Guide to the Building Blocks of Enterprise IoT Platforms Updated

The MachNation wall chart will make sure you don’t miss something important.

MachNation updated its definition of the functional components of an enterprise IoT platform with a detailed breakdown of its most important building blocks.

MachNation’s functional architecture of Internet of Things (IoT) platforms makes for a 10-page document (available here) that breaks down an IoT platform into its cloud, edge and device layers and groups 33 “functional blocks” into eight categories: access control, analytics, application, data management, device management, event processing, integration and monitoring. An edge layer, missing in earlier block diagrams of IoT systems, is included. Edge computers process data close to the source, allowing for quick reaction and reduction in data volume.

The Importance of IoT Platform Organization

The complexity of IoT platforms is reduced to an easy-to-understand building blocks approach, with each block having the briefest description.

With IoT systems becoming more and more important for product designers to implement, and with most companies in a hurry to implement them, a wall chart such as the one above can make sure that no vital part of an IoT system is overlooked, such as now famous fails in which hurried IoT products revealed glaring security breaches.

In perhaps the most famous and earliest of network breaches that occurred even before IoT was a buzzword, clandestine forces hacked the centrifuges enriching uranium for the Iranian nuclear reactors. Following quickly on its heels was the Mirai botnet attack in 2016 that attacked IoT devices and used them to flood a DNS provider with a denial-of-service attack, stopping major sites like GitHub, Netflix, Spotify and Twitter, among others. And as serious as a heart attack, pacemakers and defibrillators were exposed as being vulnerable to hacks at St. Jude Medical, as was the Owlet Wi-Fi baby monitor. Cars were hijacked and made to speed up, slow down and even run off the road.

MachNation’s chart, which  breaks down general IoT architecture into something that is digestible for both business owners and IT experts, brings an element of organization to industry’s implementation of a fast-moving emerging technology.

MachNation, which was cofounded by Steve Hilton, a speaker and telecom analyst, is in the business of testing and benchmarking IoT platforms, middleware and services with its IoT Test Environment (MIT-E) and maintains a benchmarking lab for IoT platforms.