Crafting The Future Of the Internet of Things Through Edge Computing and the Blockchain

in #computing4 years ago (edited)



Bob came home really angry, the day had been really hectic and Jane turned down his proposal. The gate had turned itself open once a smart contract was triggered by the distinctive flash of his headlights which fell on the gates, the garage door opened itself in response to the hum of his engine while his apartment which remained dark was suddenly flooded with lights in response to the opening of the garage door. Back in his room, his SmartX wearable dutifully read his temperature and finding it a little bit too high triggered the mechanism to start the air conditioner at the same time finding his blood pressure a bit on the high prompted his stereo to start playing Adele's Hello which is Bob's very best. Bob is sucked into the Utopian perfection of the excellent communication between his devices which are the definition of the very best of what the Internet of Things stands for and soon forgets his worries. Four minutes later, Bob jerks awake, he had been dreaming, a dream makes reality.



The Internet of Things is a thing that really fascinates me, a collection of billions of devices around the world that are connected to the internet, collecting and sharing data and therefore adding a level of digital intelligence to almost anything that would otherwise be simply dumb while also enabling them communicate without human interference and therefore merging the gap between the digital and the physical. However, this understanding of what the Internet of Things is unfortunately just the ideal of what should be and not what is presently obtainable. The IoT is fairly considered to be the next revolution of information technology after the emergence of computers and the internet and so deserves mechanisms which would allow for its optimal development in order to open new paradigms of experience in Information Technology. The IoT industry on the whole is rapidly ascending in investments and number of devices with a reported expected increase of investments from $736.9b in 2015 to $289.9b by the year 2020 and also an expected increase of connected IoT devices from 14.866 billion 30 billion by the year 2030. The Internet of Things however is far from its Utopian state as was experienced by Bob, it is plagued by a whole of problems which so far limited its impact and tamed it growth.  

Problem Definition: The Internet of Things and Current Flaws


While the Internet of Things in itself is a phenomenon with true revolutionary power, it is plagued by a host of problems that continue to impede its impact and use cases. Foremost among these unresolved issues include;     

(a) Lack of Security and Privacy of Data Collected By The Internet of Things:

IoT devices collect a lot of data from personal to corporate. However, devices of the Internet of things are highly vulnerable and so pose great security risks to private data. This lack of security is indeed a cause of concern hence individuals also do not have the ability to control over their data collected by the Internet of Things. Moreover most embedded software running connected devices is insecure and highly vulnerable leaving an indeterminate number of critical systems at high risk. Back in October 2016, the largest cyber attack was launched on Service Provider Dyn through an IoT botnet. This IoT botnet was made possible by a malware called Mirai. Once infected with Mirai, computers continually searched the internet for vulnerable IoT devices and then used known default usernames and passwords to log in, infecting them with malware. These devices were things like digital cameras and DVR players, a classical example of the security vulnerability of the IoT.    

(b) Inefficiency of Cloud Computing Based IoT Architecture;

The Internet of Things today is mostly based on Cloud Infrastructure because of the levels of speed processing it can afford. However, Communication between devices of the Internet of Things needs to be real time in various scenarios and applications such as in autonomous driving and virtual reality. Cloud based infrastructure falls short of this major requirement hence latency is experienced lasting for up to hundreds of milliseconds a situation not so ideal for the development of the IoT.  

(c) Lack of Interoperability and Data Sharing Between IoT Platforms.   

Every new frontier of human advancement always comes as a result of the free flow of some kind of information be it architectural, medical or scientific. The IoT industry is however, currently highly centralized with each competitor company trying to control major stakes. There is therefore a centralization of IoT data which does not allow for easy sharing of data between various stakeholders. This challenge greatly impedes the development of the IoT as a whole hence valuable data which could have caused development is not shared.     

(d) Lack of a Clear Cut Business Model for the IoT.   

For every new paradigm that is achieved, wat really keeps it going is a clear cut line of action, and in this case a business model that can put commercal meanig, purpose and usability into such venture. The IoT rather than providing conveniences has not had such a clear cut business model despite enormous possibil1ities and applications.    The IoT industry is however set to be revolutionized by a truly ingenious solution embodied in the project IONCHAIN.  

Introducing IONChain

 Let's start with some history and science first. In1887, the Swedish Scientist Svante Arrhenius proposed that Ions are also very much a fundamental particle in the formation of substances as much as atoms and molecules. IONChain is therefore that fundamental particle that is solely needed for the formation of the ideal Internet of Things. Thus IONCHAIN would act as the link that connects various devices of the Internet of Things from a Smart Wristwatch to an Aeroplane such that they are able to communicate through smart contracts and in a decentralized environment that guarantees safety of data.   The secure, real time, non latent exchange of values between IoT devices opens up a new paradigm of IoT experience which would not only enhance Information Technology but also mainstream the Internet of Things and open up a whole wide area of new possibilities and applications ranging from industrial applications to intelligent devices and Logistics/Supply Chains. Furthermore, the IONChain addresses the problems of the IoT industry and ensures security of data, data circulation, data sharing and data optimization bringing the world yet to another possibility. 

Edge Computing and Decentralized BlockChain Technology: IONChain's Super Combo For the Perfect Internet of Things.

  IONChain utilizes the wonder combo of Edge computing and blockchain technology to comprehensively address the problems of the Internet of Things. Edge Computing is a distributed computing paradigm in which computation is largely completely carried out on distributed device nodes known as smart devices as opposed to computation taking place in a centralized cloud environment. Edge computing allows for the integration of computation, storage and applications at the edge of the network near source of data. While traditional Cloud computation solutions do not offer a viable means free from defects such as low latency, Edge computing makes possible the decrease of feedback latency and so enables for the wide application of the Internet of Things in use cases and scenarios hitherto not possible.  Edge Computing also plays a critical role in solving the problems of data privacy and security over the Internet of Things. Edge computing enables users to take control of their own data and determine who gets to access it or who does not. IONChain's core focus is therefore to ensure data privacy and security and to enable data circulation, sharing and trading. IONChain through the instrumentality of edge computing breaks down the barriers of the IoT and ensures connection of IoT devices of any type or at any scale through decentralized blockchain technology. This awesome combination of edge computing and blockchain technology presents a new era of the Internet of Things which is perfection.  

  One Device, One Code, One Coin: Integrating IoT Hardware and Infrastructure.

IONChain has come up with the slogan One Device, One Code, One Coin which serves as a perfect explanation and blueprint of IONChain's goal of integrating IoT hardware and infrastructure thus allowing devices of the IoT to communicate over even parameters. "Device" represents IoT devices, Coin is the IONC token while "Code" represents the unique identification number for various IoT devices in the IONchain network allowing them to be uniquely identified and their data traceable and also rendered secure by the IONChain's distributed ledger.  IONchain also incorporates the idea of every device being a mining machine and so enables the earning of rewards through IONChain's Ionization Algorithm.   IONChain also integrates the Inter Planetary File System (IPFS) to ensure the distributed and encrypted storage of IoT data thus enabling security of data by ensuring only holders of private keys are able to access data to the exclusion of others. IONChain also enables the emergence of a clear cut IoT business model by the use of smart contract technology which allows for data trading which would evolve into machine to machine trades.     

The IONChain Technical Architecture: A New and Better Approach to Value

The IONCHAIN technical architecture which is based on the internet of value makes use of the Ionization protocol. This algorithm is inspired by the process of ionization which is the gaining of a positive or negative charge by an atom by acquiring or losing electrons to ions. In the same way, the IONChain ionization algorithm singles out two core responsibilities of the blockchain which include value creation and value transfer.  Hence the combination of these is not suitable for the IONChain IoT ecosystem which necessitates the Ionization protocol that is mainly responsible for the separation of value creation and value transfer. The value transfer layer would therefore allow for the transfer of value freely by participants throughout the IONChain ecosystem. 

The value generation process of the IONChain ecosystem is on the other hand divided in four, these are; 

  • Value Generation: The value generation layer of the IONChain ecosystem is primarily the function of IoT devices connected to the IONChain Network and and their combination with Edge Computing Centers. Each IoT device is a potential mining machine on the IONChain Network and its information can produce IONC tokens. Once value generated is calculated, it is passed on for verification.

  • Value Verification: Just like in any consensus model of any other blockchain, value transfer in the IONChain ecosystem requires to be verified by parties interested in such data. Successfully verified data will be passed on for valuation while unsuccessful verification means data being returned invalid.

  • Value Evaluation: Verified data is evaluated in order to prevent malicious attacks as double spending.

  • Value Confirmation: Successfully verified and evaluated data is confirmed at this stage and passed in order to be transferred. 

Value Transfer in the IONChain ecosystem however comprises of five different but equally important layers. These include;

  • Application Layer:  Devices request access to the IONChain network through this layer which serves also serves as the user interface  layer.

  • Service Layer: An abstraction of the internal modules in the IONChain ecosystem which adopts a binary based gRPC protocol.

  • Protocol Layer: At the protocol layer, IONChain provides a host of various protocols including a  consensus protocol, network protocol and a host of others.

  • Smart Contract Layer: Smart contracts stand at the very center of the IONChain ecosystem. They are responsible for the interfacing of user requirements and the blockchain thereby enabling users safely access and use data stored on the blockchain. The IONChain smart contract layer is made up of the currency issuance contract,  wallet contract and IoT device life-cycle contracts.

  • Blockchain layer: The blockchain layer is one that is most core to the IONChain ecosystem and its consensus algorithm is most important. IONChain integrates both the PoS and PoW consensus algorithms into what it calls the IPOS algorithm, a protocol that is ideal for IONChain's IoT solutions.

  • Data Storage Layer: IONChain utilizes the BigChainDB as its data storage layer. The BigChainDB offers decentralized storage, is immutable and allows for asset registration and transfer.

Use Cases

Use Case 1: A Smart City Powered By IONChain

Blinkos is a smart city whose entire operations is automated  through efficient communication between smart devices of the Internet of Things made possible by IONChain. The traffic lights operate based on data shared with them by cameras, its transport system is run byautonomous cars that collect data in real time and so are efficient thanks to IONChain. Every Sector of the City Blinkos is run by smart devices who collect share and analyze data as made possible by IONChain. Blinkos is therefore very much a classical use case of the possibilities of IONChain.

Case 2: Integration of the IoT in Industrial Processes

Today's industrial processes have become very much automated allowing for the performance of highly complex operations with little or no human effort. With the ability for efficient communication being opened up by IONChain. Shola Inc has therefore implemented IONChain in its manufacturing plant. The various machines communicate securely with each other through the various processes at the same time earning IONC as well as being secure.


While i read through the IONchain whitepaper, i became filled with awe for the brilliant idea put forward by the IONchain team. IONChain is no doubt a project which unlocks the full potentials of the IoT and by removing unresolved issues which revolve around security of data collected by devices of the IoT as well as the ability to share data with other devices. A new paradigm is therefore very much here, thanks to IONChain.

The Team

The RoadMap

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