If you aren’t a tech guru or even someone who hasn’t spent time on the phone with a WiFi provider setting-up WiFi in your home, then the acronym ‘IoT’ is probably just a jumble of random letters to your brain.
IoT stands for the “internet of things”. To put it plainly, IoT is a system of internet-connected sensors that work together inside of everyday objects to collect and transfer data over a wireless network. Examples of IoT could be the smart bulb in your house that changes colors via the vocal command you give to your Google Home (which would also be considered a byproduct of IoT).
IoT has been around since the 1970s, only then it was referred to as “embedded internet”. Kevin Ashton came up with its now widely accepted name in 1999. Over the years, IoT has infiltrated into the physical world, connecting people to the internet on almost every platform – our smartphones, watches, cars, alarms, refrigerators, thermostats, etc.
It’s easy to see all of the ways in which IoT controls household items, but what about when you set foot outside of your house and into a sports stadium, bowling alley, or other social entertainment venues?
Here’s a real-world example: the Painted Duck defines itself as a “distinguished drinkery, duckpin bowling, and gaming parlour” located in the West Midtown Stockyards of Atlanta, Georgia. It is an immaculate entertainment venue that can hold over 500 individuals at a time.
Underneath all of the glitz and glam of this bowling alley-nightclub-hybrid is a system of IoT networks all interconnected and working together to provide its guests with the highest level of entertainment possible. The Painted Duck uses software called Conqueror Pro. Through this, staff can have instant and easy control over the bowling lanes.
Conqueror Pro also allows the staff the ability to create a check (including the cost for the lane, shoes, and socks) that is transferred over the venue WiFi to Micros. Micros is another software that is used by waitstaff to input food and beverage. The Conqueror Pro bowling check can be picked up in Micros and added to the food and beverage check, making it simple for guests to have all of their expenses in one place. Entertainment WiFi can control the lighting, temperature, and music in the venue.
Small sensors on the actual lanes themselves register the pin-setter control after a ball is rolled, telling the lane which pins to keep up once the lane resets itself. A small scanner camera inside of the mechanism captures a quick picture of the pins and sends that information over to the scoring system, which is then projected on the screen for the guests to see.