Thanks to ubiquitous and mobile technology, such as smartphones and tablets, it is estimated that globally more than 1.1 trillion megabytes of data are created each day. Entire sectors of the economy are dedicated to figuring out how to best capture information, analyze it and exploit it for both good reasons and bad. We truly are in the Information Age.
The collection, processing, and integration of data within our daily lives are evolving so quickly it can be difficult to keep up. The commercial world once looked to the government and military – the originators of the Internet – for inspiration and innovation. However, it is now the government and military that turn to private industry to innovate at the speed of business, remain relevant, and stay ahead in a highly competitive marketplace of great power competition.
Modern software architectures and technologies are being driven by tech giants offering cloud computing, streaming video services, e-commerce, and others. These technologies include virtualization, containerization, open standards, and perhaps the least understood, event-driven architecture (EDA).
Open standards and EDA are areas where the government can greatly benefit from the thriving commercial cloud computing industry. One of the best examples of EDA in everyday use is home automation. Routine tasks providing us with security, convenience, and comfort that are simple to set up and run without us even thinking about them, actually rely on a larger, digital ecosystem that could not even exist 10 years ago.
Undoubtedly, consumers can relate to these now commonplace examples:
Our smartphones automatically calculate the fastest route to work, providing the distance, the estimated time of arrival, and instant notifications of any accidents that occur in our path (followed by immediate adjustments to the ETA).
Closing the garage door triggers other events throughout the house such as the activation of an alarm, turning off all the lights, and setting the thermostat to save energy.
While at work, cameras employ computer vision algorithms that notify homeowners of package deliveries, water leaks in the basement, or attempted break-ins.
The phone learns that your workday lasts until 5:30 pm most days. With this information, it knows that when it connects to the car’s Bluetooth at 5:32 pm, it automatically suggests the fastest way home and can be set up to share your ETA with family.
All of these actions are made possible by EDA that ties together all the systems of your phone – GPS, CPU, applications, and even the gyroscopes that determine the physical position of your phone – and interacts with running microservices existing in commercial clouds.
These automated actions are made possible by data that is collected, structured, and tagged in standardized formats that make it artificial intelligence (AI) ready. So, even though our phones, tablets, and computers are made by a wide variety of manufacturers, they can simply write their code to a published standard, enabling the industry and the user base to drive innovation and new features in the marketplace.