Having been a researcher at Inria Lille-Nord Europe in France since 2006, Dr. Nathalie Mitton is currently the scientific head of the Inria FUN team focused on small computing devices like electronic tags and sensor networks. Her research interests are mainly focused on IOT, self-organization, self-stabilization, energy-efficient routing, and neighbor discovery algorithms for wireless sensor networks, as well as RFID middlewares. She is involved in the setup of the SensLAB and FIT platforms, and in several program and organization committees, including that of InterIoT 2015, the international conference on Interoperability in IoT co-located with the IOT360 summit, of which she is a General Co-Chair.
Why is it important to implement interoperability within IOT?
We witness a lot of sporadic IoT networks and systems arising today – in cities, in industry, and so on. As often in new technologies, each manufacturer has their own way of programming and interfacing it. To allow a wider use and reduce the costs, it is paramount to enable interactions between all these networks. This will allow, firstly, a better competitiveness in the market, but also more flexibility in terms of hardware and, above all, enhanced services that could benefit from, first, the data issued from different systems, and then the actions that could be performed by a set of heterogeneous systems.
What challenges are slowing the implementation of interoperability down?
Actually, there are several challenges slowing the implementation down. The most important of them is the large set of heterogeneous hardware, networks and systems. IoT devices feature different hardware capacities in terms of memory storage, CPU, and energy, and follow different mobility policies. Some are static, some move in a random way, while others follow predictive or fixed mobility patterns. In the same way, they do not all benefit from the same connectivity in terms of throughput and time of connections. Also, each device may use its own language to communicate and to exchange data. There is thus a need to find common standards to allow devices to communicate in a comprehensive way.
How will InterIoT contribute towards solving these issues?
InterIoT will bring practicing engineers and advanced researchers together to share state-of-the-art knowledge concerning interoperability in the IoT, analyse what is needed, and identify the work that lies ahead, to increase the number of interoperable IoT products. It will allow the main actors within IoT to discuss and exchange their points of view in order to move towards interoperability, and establish standards that meet the most expectations in order to be adopted in large, and limit frustrations.