Internet of ‘Mysterious’ Things

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This fictional story uses technological advances in the fields of sensortechnology, personal area network communications, and ambient assisted living, toexplore the possibilities for future assisted health and wellbeing. It occurs in threetime frames: past, present and slightly into the future (Sept 2011). Most of thehardware mentioned in the story is working, either in everyday life or is underdevelopment by companies for specialist sports and leisure applications. Howeverthe sensor to predict acute myocardial infarction is speculative and may be seen asthe ‘holy grail’ of sensors, facilitating prediction of adverse events, and allowingpreemptive treatment. Communication within the personal area network andto/from the Internet, realizes the concept of an “Internet of Things”. As always thesoftware struggles to catch up with the hardware, in order to provide a usable andreliable system. The software is depicted as a set of communicating intelligentagents, under the control of a dubious ‘virtual’ coach, and this introducesuncertainty and mystery. The story unwinds during the Berlin marathon 2011, afitting setting to test whether stress can be assessed using ambulatory technology.Hans Fallada’s novel, “Alone in Berlin” set in the 1940’s and David Bowie’sBerlin trilogy of alternative music recordings, produced in the late 70’s, provideominous and foreboding backdrops to the story.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAmbient Intelligence and Smart Environments Volume 10, 2011
EditorsJC Augusto, H Aghajan, V Callaghan, DJ Cook, J O'Donoghue, S Egerton, M Gardner, BD Johnson, Y Kovalchuk, R López-Cózar, P Mikulecký, JWP Ng, R Poppe, MJ Wang, V Zamudio
PublisherIOS Press
ISBN (Print)978-1-60750-794-9
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 24 Jul 2011


  • Internet of Things
  • sensor technology
  • motivational feedback
  • intelligent agents
  • Berlin marathon
  • Hans Fallada
  • Bowie
  • ageing population.


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