Ricky Synnot

The Internet of Things

July 5, 2015

‘The Internet of things’ (IoT) is a phrase we hear a lot today; sometimes in a serious context, and sometimes in jest.

I noticed last week when reading my regular email from IFTTT that General Electric now provide a channel for connecting your devices.

By using the ‘GE Appliances Cooking Channel’ and IF, your devices can alert you when things happen.  For example: ‘Receive a phone call when your oven is pre-heated’ or ‘Post a tweet when dinner is ready’. Nuts.

I’d always assumed this would take place ‘in the future’ – but we’re talking about every day consumer goods here, not super-high-tech imports.GE’s entry into this typically futuristic space is a turning point for the IoT – I think we’ll start to see a lot more devices ready for interaction like this. IF’s options are still fairly rudimentary in a digital context (phone, email, text, tweet etc), so we’ll likely see an improvement in the connection channels available.On this theme, also worth a look is Google’s Project Jacuard.

Speaking of the future, Web UI app prodigy ‘Macaw’ have unveiled their new editing suite ‘Scarlet’.  Showcased with a fairly impressive landing page (and tongue-in-cheek URL), Scarlet heralds a new age of web design that’s done live, in-browser.  Their new app allows the designer to keep multiple windows open at various breakpoints while they visually design and edit live presentation code.

This idea isn’t overly innovative. Back-in-the-day Dreamweaver provided live previews & visual editing, so non-developers could output code (read:spaghetti Bolognese) straight from the app.

Scarlet by Macaw do this with specific breakpoint views, so it will definitely be one to watch.  Especially if Adobe continue on their quest to emulate Sketch in CC2015.

So, Im keenly interested in seeing what this new breed of live-editing web design tools provide, and whether they can collapse some of our design thinking and prototyping time down. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how I can step away from static mockups and into a live ideation environment. This could be my first step.

NB: This post is based on the latest issue of my email newsletter.