about iota

The internet of things is not the goal

We have built the IoTA platform to inspire a revolution in open connectivity, devices and sensors to help people shape the world around them and tackle issues that are important to them. The future of the Internet of Things (IoT) is about you and what you can do with it. We can use this revolution in sensor technology to make an increasingly personalised life for the few or we use it to create real change within your community and beyond.

IoT shouldn’t be limited to big data, smart cities and a select few having access to enormous piles of incomprehensible datasets. Our platform helps you to stop being a data spectator: measuring or being measured with no insight into where the data goes or what it means. IoTA encourages people to understand the data they create and use it for meaningful change. Please see our report 'CONNECTIONS TO CHANGE' for more.

Sharing and collaborating

Since the creation of devices like Arduino & Raspberry Pi, makers and technologists have been collecting data and monitoring everything from air quality to energy use. Although this technology is far more accessible than it was there is a great opportunity to join up people with clear needs and those with the technology to solve them. Opportunities that come from being part of a larger community: IoTA is making that possible.

We aim to connect people and launch sensor based ventures that will make a meaningful difference. We will also profile projects done elsewhere to promote them. Where possible all the tools and resources; the recipes, generated by the different projects within IoTA open and shared within the IoTA platform. As a user, you will have access to ideas and people that have done projects before. That way you can reuse, adapt and learn with other people’s discoveries.

Re-imagining Your World

Anyone can be involved with IoTA: hobbyists, tinkerers, technologists, community leaders and those who have never turned to technology to solve a problem. By bringing these different people together, we allow you to learn and explore the different ways in which IoT technology can be used.

IoTA gives you a space to ask the questions you never thought you’d have the answers to: How much pollution does my baby inhale on our daily walks? How much do flight paths impact on my sleep? But IoTA is about more than asking questions: your  data can become an important tool for change.

guide to iota

who can use iota?

• Anyone who is affected by an issue eg. flight noise or pollution.

• Anyone who is interested in helping their community prepare or anticipate problems for the future, for example, the installation of flood sensors which warn the community and government about rising water levels before it's too late.

• Technologists, hobbyists, community groups, lobbyists, anyone passionate about their community who has a problem to solve.

By participating in projects you create the data needed to provide evidence to address the problem, whether that’s walking a different route or campaigning against flight paths.

How does IoTA work?

The aim of IoTA is to launch sensor based ventures that tackle meaningful problems. We are building our own projects and available for consultancy on projects you are working on. You can also come to us with a problem you would like to solve, an idea for a project or an offer of a skillset that might be useful. If we can we will help match you up with others who you can work with. You can come in at any stage of a project, but here’s an example:

step

1

You have a question about something you feel passionate about:

eg. You’re a new parent living on a busy road, when you push your pram you can’t help but notice your baby is at nose-level with the exhaust-pipes of vehicles. You want to know how much pollution is actually being inhaled by your child.

 

step

2

You contact IoTA & we will help you shape & start your project

We will help you frame the problem and connect you with other people (sensor experts for example) and put the question to our network.

 

step

3

IoTA will help you refine your project and connect you with technologists if necessary

who can e.g. help build sensors to put on prams to geo-locate where the pollution is worst and measure the levels that go into your pram.

 

step

4

You will work with IoTA and your own personal community

e.g. to find volunteers who are happy to use the sensors and keep a record over a trial period.

 

step

5

Set up a project page and start collecting data

We will help you set up a project page and help you display the data (depending on what you want to display).

 

step

6

You and your community can chose

whether to continue collecting data and e.g. make a case for policy change or simply to continue mapping routes for your community.

 

Do I have to know how to use Arduino or other pieces of hardware?

Absolutely not. IoTA fosters a community with diverse skills. We want to make sure those with little or no technical capabilities find those who do.

I don’t have any ideas but I love making things, can I get involved?

Of course, we will put you in touch with the people who have ideas and you can choose which project to get involved in.

What happens to the data?

Good question. Adding connectivity to the devices around you means that you generate far more data. This data can, of course, be used for good and for rather less savoury goals. At IOTA we start with the premise that the data you generate belongs to you. Any data you generate, especially if it might be used to identify you, is managed very carefully but you are in control. You get to decide if you would just like to hold onto it yourself or if you are interested in sharing the data with others in your community or wider to help generate change.

who we are

IoTA was a joint venture from Superflux and Forum for the Future which has now been set up as an independent enterprise. The team have an invaluable mix of design thinking, technology expertise and innovation experience combined with a comprehensive understanding of the big challenges we face in the world.

directors

Anab Jain, director

Anab is a designer, strategist, filmmaker and founder of the award winning design studio Superflux. She has lead multidisciplinary projects for organisations such as Sony, BBC, Nokia, NHS, Design Council, Forum for the Future and Govt. of UAE. Her work has won awards from Apple Computers Inc., UNESCO, and ICSID, and has been exhibited at MoMA New York, Science Gallery Dublin, National Museum of China and London Design Festival amongst others.

Hugh Knowles, director @hugh_knowles

Hugh uses futures intelligence to help a wide range of organisations develop new ideas and experiment with tackling the big challenges of the 21st Century. He is Head of Innovation at Forum for the Future, an independent non-profit working globally with business, government and other organisations to solve sustainablity challenges. A degree in Zoology and Ecology followed was followed by a few years in the wilderness of IT consultancy. Rescued by the UK Centre for Economic and Environmental Development where he spent many days spent looking at waste electronics which led to the idea of the www.weeeman.org which resides at the Eden Project.

 

core team

Jon Ardern, Interaction Design, Maker

Jon is designer, technologist, maker, and director at Superflux, leading the creative and technological development of projects for a diverse range of clients such as Sony, Snibbe Interactive, Demotix and the Government of UAE. His work has been exhibited at the MoMA New York and V&A London, and has won prizes from UNESCO and New York's Social Design Network.

Philipp Ronnenberg, Creative Technologist

Philipp Ronnenberg is a designer and technologist passionate about democratizing technology, open-source phenomena, making-hacking culture and digital protest. Philipp’s work investigates the relationship between technology and society, using various programming languages, electronics, software-hardware-prototyping, graphics and animations.

Martin Charlier, User Experience Design

Martin is a product and interaction designer specialising in the intersection of digital and physical, who has worked with Frog Design, Random International and Fjord. He is most comfortable in the strategic end of design and believe in the importance of iterative, experimental prototyping and real human insight to inspire and inform new ideas.

Daniel Pomlett, Visual Design

Daniel is a graphic designer and founder of The Space Room, a design studio specialising in print collateral, logo design, web graphics and website building for a wide variety of clients.

Ana Bradley, Wordsmith

Ana is the founder of Pypr, a consultancy who focus on community building and storytelling, and a partner at Designswarm, an internet of things consultancy. Her work focuses product & delivery roadmaps, IoT consultancy, brand developing, writing and organising events.

Vivian Schlömer, Wibke Murke, Graphic Design

Supersynchron is an interdisciplinary design studio based in Hamburg (Germany) founded by Wibke Murke and Vivian Schlömer. They shift between analog and digital and love every kind of challenge. Having an eye for the details AND the big picture they develop ideas, concepts and designs that work either in function and aesthetics.