Wed. Aug 4th, 2021

Experts argue about whether the IoT needs humans

Panel at IPExpo disagrees about the need for humans in an interconnected world

Experts at the IPExpo conference argued recently about the value of humans in the age of the Internet of Things (IoT).

Some said that the IoT is about providing data for people to analyse, while others suggested that it should be independent and outside human control.

Harvey Lewis, director at Deloitte MCS, was in the former camp. “When you realise that the IoT is about supporting human decision making, and is a measure of human behaviour, that’s the ‘Aha!’ moment,” he said.

“The IoT is really about human augmentation. The information that the IoT collects isn’t really useful unless it’s put into the hands of a person who is then able to take decisions and act on it.

“We’re used to thinking of the IoT as machine-to-machine, and we need to start thinking about it as machine-to-human.”

This statement did not sit well with James Hatch, director of BAE Systems Applied Intelligence.

“I don’t agree. The information will be put to people for the next few years, but after that you can just take people out of the loop. As automation improves you should get to the stage where things just work,” he said.

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