Vernetzte Welt #43: IBM und „Blockchain-as-a-Service“

IBM, Particle, Identitätsmanagement, Apple Watch, Kopenhagen

Immer Mittwochs -aus Krankheitsgründen diese Woche am Donnerstag- erscheint auf eine kommentierte Übersicht zu den wichtigsten Entwicklungen und besten Analysen aus der Welt der vernetzten Geräte, dem ‚Internet der Dinge‘.
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Top: IBM bietet „Blockchain-as-a-Service“, macht große Teile seines Blockchain-Codes Open Source

The Next Web:

Smart contracts are the “cutting edge” of this technology, so says the independent researcher and consultant on alternative finance Brett Scott, writing for the UN.

„Imagine a coded blockchain-based script that is activated when two parties send bitcoins to an escrow Bitcoin account that is controlled by the script, and which will release the bitcoins in the future to whoever wins a bet on the average level of rainfall over a certain period. This smart-contract is programmed to read data from weather agencies, and after a set amount of time releases the bitcoins from the escrow, sending it to a farmer who requires protection against low rainfall. This is a blockchain-based weather derivatives contract.“

IBM’s clearly got a bit of a head start on this and is now also offering ‘blockchain as a service’ for developers to use within the IBM Cloud via a service called Bluemix, with API infrastructure for plugging in outside data.

It’ll also let you to plug IoT information into its blockchain suit, via the Watson platform, so you can include data from physical world activity communicated via something like RFID chips, barcode scans or mobile devices.

The Register:

Big Blue has dumped the Apache 2.0-licensed source on GitHub, providing a limited but functional dev environment to build on. The IT giant has pledged to maintain the code as others build on top of it, including big-name Hyperledger partners that include Intel, Fujitsu, Cisco, JP Morgan, Accenture and others.

Key elements in the code dump are a „consensus algorithm“ which is vital for proper functioning of a decentralized system, and a contract template that helps people code agreements into the system in Java.

Das ergibt Sinn. Mittels Open Source vergrößert IBM die Reichweite seines Blockchain-IoT-Ansatzes, indem es kompatible Projekte ermöglicht, eine gewisse langfristige Sicherheit schafft, und Entwicklern den Raum gibt, mit den technischen Details vertraut zu werden. (Aus gleichen Gründen hat etwa Google sein Machinelearning-Tool TensorFlow Open Source gemacht.)


Using a cloud service like IBM’s, „in 12 seconds, a developer could have their own mini blockchain sandbox running,“ said Jerry Cuomo, vice president of blockchain technologies for the company. „A minute or so after that, they can have their first blockchain sample application up and running.“

IBM’s Bluemix cloud service also offers integration with other technologies that developers „can start mashing up“ into their blockchain apps, he said. „You can build mobile front ends, you can build APIs to the blockchain.“


In late December, several big-name companies from across both the tech and financial industries—including IBM, JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, and the London Stock Exchange—unveiled a new open source software project based on the blockchain, the global online ledger that underpins the bitcoin digital currency. The project aims to build blockchain-like software that can more efficiently, reliably, and openly track the exchange of financial assets, including stocks, bonds, futures, houses, and car titles. And considering the names involved—particularly the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation, or DTCC, which oversees Wall Street’s stock settlement system—it’s an enormously significant undertaking.

Unlike the blockchain itself, the Hyperledger software isn’t battle-tested. In fact, it’s still being built. But on Tuesday, IBM unveiled a new cloud computing service that lets anyone kick the proverbial tires on this fledgling technology.

Mehr Einsichten auch bei CoinDesk.

„Blockchain-as-a-Service“ ist auch eine schöne Buzzwordkonvergenz. Hier die Pressemitteilung.

Daran anknüpfend: „Quarks: IBMs Open-Source-Werkzeug für das Internet der Dinge“:

Quarks ist eine API und Runtime zur unmittelbaren Analyse von IoT-Daten dort, wo sie erfasst werden. Es soll bei der lokalen Aufbereitung ebenso helfen wie beim Filtern vor der Übermittlung ans Backend.

Siehe auch Thingonomics 3: Xiaomi als zentrale IoT-Plattform, Blockchain als dezentrale Lösung.

Analysen & Berichte

Particle will (u.a.) Aggregator für IoT-Datenpläne sein

Im Porträt von Particle („Particle is a prototype-to-production platform for developing an Internet of Things product.“) auf FastCompany:

The Internet of Things isn’t (yet) a big business, and the concept favors lots of small-scale devices, rather than a handful of hits. Certifying, provisioning, and managing data plans for all of these devices is a tall order for wireless carriers, who are used to selling smartphones by the million.

„There are a lot of really interesting customers out there that they would love to support,“ Supalla says, „but they’re just not built to support smaller companies, and interestingly their definition of a smaller company can be quite large.“

Naturally, Supalla hopes that carriers will be drawn to aggregators like Particle, which can negotiate one-size-fits-all data plans on behalf of many startups. If Particle ships Electrons to 10,000 companies that are building IoT devices, and those customers in turn ship thousands of Electron-based products, carriers get to scale their Internet of Things business without much extra effort.

Particle arbeitet als ein Betreiber eines virtuellen Mobilfunknetzes. (eine Art Wiederverkäufer von, in diesem Fall, Datenplänen unter eigener Marke)

Ein anderer Ansatz als jener von Sigfox, das ein eigenes auf machine2machine spezialisiertes Funknetzwerk aufbaut. (Siehe u.a. „Samsung investiert in Sigfox“)

CB Insights: „The Industrial IoT: 56 Startups Transforming Factory Floors, Oil Fields, And Supply Chains“

CB Insights mit einer weiteren Branchen-Karte:

(Siehe etwa auch „Übersicht über Wearables-Startups“)

The Things Network

Porträt von The Things Network auf The Verge:

The city of Amsterdam was blanketed with LoRaWAN last August using only 10 gateways at a cost of $1,200 dollars each. In just six weeks the community-owned network was funded and implemented by volunteers without the help of a telecommunications company. It’s completely free to use by anyone in the city — no subscription or logins required. And costs are about to drop dramatically in July when TTN starts shipping its $200 LoRaWAN gateway to Kickstarter backers. (..)

Build it and they will come, echoes the voice around the world as LoRaWAN networks take root in Sao Paulo, Boston, Buenos Aires, Kochi, and Sydney. 36 cities are now on the map as TTN’s community-driven campaign goes global.

Siehe auch Thingonomics 11: ‚The Things Network‘, von Amsterdam in die Welt

„Internet of Things Momentum Depends on Identity Management“

Business 2 Community:

In addition to sensors and networking capabilities, another technology needed to drive IoT forward is data management, specifically identity data management. A defining characteristic of IoT is that people, devices and apps all have digital identities, and a tremendous volume of data is generated and used by each one. Identity management is a key enabler of IoT’s data-intense relationships between people, devices and apps.

Identität ist eine große Herausforderung im Internet der Dinge. (Neue Accounts? Bestehende Accounts (FB, Google, Apple)? Datenfingerabdruck? Interoperabilität der Identitäten? etc. pp.)

ASICS übernimmt Runkeeper


Ein Preis wurde in der Mitteilung am Freitag nicht genannt. Asics folgt damit dem Vorbild von Adidas. Der deutsche Asics-Konkurrent kaufte im vergangenen Jahr für 220 Millionen Euro die ähnliche App Runtastic. Und der amerikanische Rivale Under Armour schluckte vor einem Jahr für 85 Millionen Dollar die Anwendung Endomondo.

Im Gegensatz zu seinen Konkurrenten ist Runkeeper noch nicht in das Hardwaregeschäft eingestiegen. Siehe zu Wearables auch Thingonomics 12: Status Quo bei den Wearables.

Smartwatches: Warum die Apple Watch aktuell gewinnt

„One Year In: Why A Die-Hard Mechanical Watch Lover Can’t Get The Apple Watch Off His Wrist (And Why That Matters)“:

I think the Apple Watch is winning the smartwatch wars right now for several reasons: better UI is one (I struggle to find Android Wear compelling, in any form, at least so far) and its ability to keep your phone in your pocket, and your head up, is another. One of its biggest secrets, though, is this: it shows every indication of having been made by people who love and understand watches, and who know that for any kind of wearable to succeed, it has to be love at first sight. And that’s why it’s not only a threat to other smartwatches, but to mechanical watchmaking.

„Copenhagen’s New Traffic Lights Recognize and Favor Cyclists“


To do that, the city is spending $8.9 million installing 380 “intelligent traffic signals” that will spot, and prioritize, buses and bikes.

“These systems will ensure traffic that flows better so that as many people as possible can save time in the greenest possible way,” Morten Kabell, the city’s technical and environmental mayor, told Copenhagenize. “It means that Copenhageners won’t waste time on their way to and from work and that is good business. Copenhagen will be a laboratory where we develop new solutions.”

„Ex-Mozilla Team Unveils “Sense,” An Intelligent, Secure Hub For The Smart Home“

Ex-Mozilla Team Unveils “Sense,” An Intelligent, Secure Hub For The Smart Home | TechCrunch:

Today, a company called Silk Labs, co-founded by former Mozilla CTO Andreas Gal, is launching a device that aims to address those concerns with its smart home sensor dubbed “Sense” that interoperates with your home’s connected devices, and automatically adapts to your needs over time by learning from your behavior and patterns.

At launch, Sense, now live on Kickstarter, will function as something of wqa digital brain for the connected home, in order to do things like turn on or off the lights, adjust the music or thermostat, and more. But what’s different about how this device operates, versus other smart home hubs on the market today, is that it acts on your behalf by developing an understanding of the people in the home, and their specific needs.

„The Internet Of Medicine Is Just What The Doctor Ordered“


It seems technology, driven by the Internet of Things (IoT), could well make the biggest transformation of all. In many respects, IoT is just what the doctor ordered. It holds the key to lowering medical costs, improving quality and making healthcare more personalized, accessible and affordable for average patients.

Siehe auch „What’s Driving the Wearable Medical Device Market?“ und „Internet of Things + Big Data = Top Healthcare“.

Eine Geisterstadt für IoT-Tests


Why would a company spend $1 billion to build a city where no one will live? Because, presumably, a lot of other organizations will pay to test their technology there.

Washington, DC-based telecommunications and defense equipment vendor Pegasus Systems devoted a reported $1 billion to build the Center for Innovation, Testing and Evaluation (or CITE for short) in rural New Mexico. The idea is to build the equivalent of a medium-sized city, defined as big enough for about 35,000 people, but with no actual population. That way, companies with potentially dangerous technologies can test their prototypes in an actual urban environment without worrying about inflicting injury or death on innocent bystanders. This will naturally lend itself to researching connected car technology – Wired’s Jeep hack from last year comes to mind – although the project’s website lists several other fields of study, many of which would involve the Internet of Things. The project’s website lists federal labs and university research institutions among the kinds of customers it aims to serve, but Pegasus managing director Robert Brumley told Fortune in October „the facility is open to anybody who wants to test.“

„HaLow Is The Natural Next Step In The Evolution Of IoT“


The Wi-Fi Alliance recently announced the long-awaited Wi-Fi HaLow standard for products incorporating IEEE 802.11ah wireless networking technology (HaLow is pronounced just like the title of the popular video game from Microsoft). (..)

Despite these cautions and drawbacks, the arrival of HaLow is exciting. It’s a step in a smart direction that builds on existing technologies to broaden the possibilities that anything and everything can be connected through a common world-wide standard — just like our televisions, laptops, phones and tablets are today — the importance of which cannot be understated as IoT evolves.

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About Marcel Weiß

Marcel Weiß, Jahrgang 1979, ist Gründer und Betreiber von
Er ist Diplom-Kaufmann, lebt in Berlin und ist seit 2007 als Analyst der Internetwirtschaft aktiv. Er arbeitet als freier Strategy Analyst und schreibt als Business Analyst regelmäßig bei digital kompakt, ist Co-Host des Exchanges-Podcasts, schreibt für diverse Publikationen, unterrichtet als Gastdozent an der Popakademie Mannheim und hält Vorträge zu Themen der digitalen Wirtschaft. Mehr zum Autor.
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