Let's Get Physical

Maciej Ceglowski, on his Pinboard blog:

While certainly motivating, spending hours trying to unbrick a five thousand dollar server was not a joyous journey of discovery that I wanted to repeat. Even though I had had expert help in physically assembling the machine, getting it running had still consumed days of my time. I decided that building these things from scratch was best left to people who knew what they were doing, or had time to spare.

And here I am spawning (and killing) Amazon EC2 instances while extolling my new found bash skills. I last ripped apart and fiddled with a PC, an actual physical machine, probably around five years ago. I've been hosting on virtual machines since it's been cheap enough: machines inside machines. Many, many virtual machines on physical machines. There's no grey area here: it's apples and oranges.

Julian Cole:

I have heard this area being called a number of things from Physical Computing, Pervasive Computing, Digital Physical, Phygital, Ubiquitous Computing and the Internet/Web of Things.

Interesting that hardware is not on the list, probably because it's too defined: Cole is talking about Internet-connected devices in the physical world. I think all the terms listed above, except one, miss the mark as they don't convey a sense of connectedness which is kind of the point. And besides, I've always liked the term Web of Things as it brings to mind all number of different objects, interfacing with each other, getting things done. It's got my vote.

Oh and Berg are doing amazing things in the space and have been for a while. Olinda, a prototype social networking digital radio, was built back in 2008. And before you cry "Spotify", we're talking solid-state electronics here.

Also: Pictures Vs. Vision