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Internet of Things, Smart Cities and Hypercat

The huge number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices are set to unlock $11.1 trillion of economic value by 2025. One effect of the IoT is allowing the concept of smart cities. Wikipedia defines a smart city as an urban area that uses different types of electronic data collection sensors to supply information which is used to manage assets and resources efficiently. As an example, the IoT is revolutionizing the way smart cities process traffic and utilities monitoring. To enable smart cities, it is necessary that the various IoT devices provide a standard means of communication. Hypercat has been developed for this purpose.

HyperCat is a new open specification developed by a consortium of 40 UK-based companies, educational establishments and local authorities that's designed to spur on the development of the Internet of Things.

Backed by £6.4 million of Technology Strategy Board funding, it works by creating an online catalogue that can be read by other IoT devices. As an example, streetlights could theoretically automatically communicate with parking sensors instead of only other streetlights. Car park sensors could be allow devices to route vehicles to car parks where there are spaces.
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The British Standards Institute (BSI) is promoting Hypercat. BT have worked on the standard and developed resources to help third parties to expose data to Hypercat. IBM have been working on uses for it.

The BSI contracted John McMillan to work with BT and IBM to investigate and document the work done by them. His contract included a review of the source code and hence preparation to make the resources available as open source.

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