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Industrial IoT

Photos: GE's Internet of BIG Things

GE's Minds + Machines event is about software, but one reason to come is the hardware. We're talking about the Internet of Things where the "things" aren't table-top gadgets and wristwatches. They're towering wind turbines and massive oil-rig drills.

I happen to think that's fun, and it's refreshing to dip into this industrial world once in a while.

But the conference, held by GE Digital last week in San Francisco, is really about developers. Predix is a platform for building cloud-based applications that use data from machines and sensors to make decisions about the things. Does an aging turbine need routine maintenance? Is that 1% performance drop a sign of deeper problems?

No Small Thing
GE's Predix applies to small things too -- teeny soil sensors in agriculture, for example. But it's more fun to take a photo of the big jet engine.
GE's Predix applies to small things too -- teeny soil sensors in agriculture, for example. But it's more fun to take a photo of the big jet engine.

So, the story here is a lot like what's happening in networking. Applications are moving to the cloud, and separately, the feedback loop of telemetry and analytics is creating new possibilities for automation.

Click the photo above for a slideshow from Minds + Machines, featuring an appathon, a smattering of smart city work, and an honest-to-goodness payphone (not a GE Digital product). You can also click here for thumbnail views.

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— Craig Matsumoto, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

Duh! 11/13/2017 | 1:49:37 PM
Re: Long-term vision In the interest of saving half of the sacred dividend, Flannery has been chopping corporate labs and GE Digital. R&D moves into the operating units. Digital focuses only on GE lines-of-business.

I have seen this movie before, and it does not end happily.
kq4ym 11/13/2017 | 12:55:37 PM
Re: Long-term vision From low code app building, small boxes, huge jet engines and low tech pay phones, it looks like the attendees had quite a bit of fun and education at this one courtesy of the GE folks.
Phil_Britt 11/1/2017 | 12:06:07 PM
Re: Long-term vision If Immelt had put resources into a backup jet for his own use, as some have charged, investors were right to push him out. He was sort of stuck with the GE Capital at an extremely bad time to be in that business. But GE seems to have fallen in the trap of many mega-corporations that are just to big to change directions quickly when previous decisions have gone bad.
Duh! 11/1/2017 | 10:14:47 AM
Long-term vision Great stuff!  Clearly the product of Jeffery Immelt's strategy for transforming the business from a non-bank bank to a company that makes big, software-driven, industrial things.  Exactly the kind of strategy that deserved to succeed.

Immelt was pushed out by "activist investors", who are now looking to dismember the company. Smearing him, to add insult to injury. We gotta hope that his vision will survive in some form.

I have to wonder when and how Predix will touch on telecom analytics.
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