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IoT Solutions Need Data Standards, Too


There has been an increase in the number of building IoT solutions and products that overlay traditional building automation systems. For example, occupant comfort and health, predictive maintenance, energy management, and occupancy optimization. Although they provide value within their siloed offering, there are additional opportunities to add value through the use of open protocols and data standards. 

Open Protocols

A recent article published in Smart Buildings Technology, "Why IoT Desperately Needs Open Standards," highlighted the benefits that could be derived from IT/OT management platforms "playing nice together." Those benefits include simplified end-to-end visibility, increased cross-solution functionality, improved security monitoring and control, and opportunities for advanced automation.

By embracing open protocols such as BACnet or Modbus, IoT solution providers can interoperate with building sub-system information, provide a better user experience, and offer increased functionality. For example, an occupancy optimization overlay system would provide more visual insights to help optimize the HVAC system. The information can flow the other way as well. For example, the electrical metering system can share consumption and demand data with an energy management optimization algorithm to reduce carbon emissions. 

Open Data Standards

Smart Building IoT manufacturers have the opportunity (responsibility) to embrace open data standards in addition to open protocols for the information that originates in their applications. By embracing data standards such as Project Haystack, the data can be shared with other applications without the "complexity of mapping."  This provides a simple integration to third-party technology and applications, such as analysis, reporting, and control. New IoT solutions can more easily be integrated and contribute to the smart building solution because the data is normalized and ready to use. 

As buildings become more connected and smarter, the number of options for IoT solutions continues to increase, highlighting the need for both open device protocols and open data standards. J2 Innovations has created the FIN Framework technology to help OEMs bring new products to market faster and easier. 


B. Scott Muench

Scott joined J2 Innovations as a partner in 2011, and is now Vice President of Customer Experience. He has a wide range of responsibilities including evangelism, business development, training, and operational excellence. Scott is well known as an industry expert in smarthomes and smart buildings. He is a past president of ASHRAE, and is currently a board member for Project Haystack. Scott attended Clarkson University for Mechanical Engineering and graduated with a BS/Business in Organizational Innovation.

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Topics from this blog: Project Haystack FIN Edge2Cloud IoT FIN Framework Technology

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