The internet of bulbs

Bruce Sterling and many others have talked about the “internet of things” for years now, but the advent of IPv6 and increasing drives toward energy efficiency have brought an example to light. (Arf!)

NXP and Green Wave Reality’s idea for lightbulbs with individual IP addresses may well turn out to be vapourware in the long run (after all, we were supposed to have arphids in everything by now, weren’t we?) and has some basic implementation flaws (as pointed out by an early SlashDot commenter, it’d make much more sense to give each light fitting the IP address, so as to avoid readdressing every time a bulb goes), but the underlying point is valid: that ubicomp/everyware is coming, and coming fast.

One thought on “The internet of bulbs”

  1. Indeed, this is already doable. With communication over the house wiring, I believe you can already purchase a small insert that fits between the base of the lightbulb, which has an embedded microcontroller that joins a network in the house. Hook the desktop in at the circuit breaker panel, and you could have such a thing up and running darned quickly. Each microcontroller could track times the light was turned on, or off, and how long it was on. The network controller could calculate how much that cost to have that light on, and allow you to turn things on and off remotely. Look up the “X10” communication protocol, and controllers and accessories.

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