Start of a journey
I started as Head of Emerging Technologies at tarent solutions in September 2018. After a year well spent, it was time to draw a conclusion. As part of Business Development, the Emerging Technologies division is responsible for identifying relevant technologies for our customers and expanding the company’s existing know-how with new technologies. As a company for individual software development projects, tarent’s strength lies in its mastery of current technologies in software development: early in agile, explorers of microservice architectures, first to use the GO programming language productively. The focus in the first year was on IoT & KI.
Developments in the IoT area
First, we decided to explore the Internet of Things (IoT) technology field. We already had solid expertise through projects with the CumulocityIoT/Cloud of Things platform. There were also projects to develop NB-IoT technology. From this, we then developed the positioning.
Full Stack IoT Integrator
Individual software development occurs in the IoT environment when users want to integrate different building blocks. Since we have experience in the development of embedded components as well as cloud/backend components and integration plays an important role, the role of the IoT integrator naturally arises. Tarent can cover all areas here, so we serve the entire stack: results in Full Stack IoT Integrator.
Implementation of SmartBuilding projects
We used the existing expertise for the implementation of SmartBuildings. This involves the digitization and automation of building management processes. There are many devices and technologies in the field. However, these cannot simply be plugged together. Therefore we have integrated the existing parts as Full Stack IoT Integrator and made them usable. The technologies/protocols Zigbee, wMBus, Wifi, LoraWAN, MQTT are used. The devices are networked via these protocols and integrated into an IoT platform. The implementation was very successful. The special insight, which is already known from other IoT projects: Go from your desk to reality quickly and solve real problems and create added value. Time to Market (TTM) is the No. 1 success factor.
Implementation of Industrial IoT projects
Industrial IoT (IIoT) has a maximum of technologies and ecosystems. It is also important to combine the cultures of operational technology (OT) with information technology (IT). As a full stack IoT integrator, tarent has also integrated individual parts into an overall solution. I talked about the individual challenges in IIoT in a lecture at the IoT Rhineland Meetup.
Implementation of telematics projects
Some IoT solutions go beyond simple status monitoring and remote access. This can make the analysis of high-frequency data necessary. The challenges involved are very similar to those encountered in big data systems. Stream and batch processing for the evaluation and provision of the gained information is done by existing components, but they do not do this on their own. tarent has made developments in existing IoT platforms to make the streaming analytics work.
There is always talk about the fact that no one can do IoT alone. It’s a partner business. But often it is tried alone. We have looked for some partners with whom we want to implement projects and have done so.
With Unitymedia we offer as a partner for Unitymedia “IoT Connect” integrations based on LoRaWAN. I wrote an article about this in the Industry of Things Online Magazine.
Software AG Partnership
There was already know-how about the CumulocityIoT platform. This was further deepened in projects. So it was a natural thing to start a partnership. It’s a very invigorating partnership on both sides and that’s very refreshing. From my point of view, the platform is the best in the market in terms of features.
In addition to IoT, we have intensively dealt with the field of AI. Here we are still working out a specialization. In several projects, we have experienced problems with data quality. The amount or quality of the data was insufficient for a successful implementation. This is a feared circumstance that makes many people hesitate to start an AI project. Therefore we have developed an offer “Data Deep Dive” to get fast and cheap certainty. The result is a kind of data passport that describes what is possible with existing data.
Data and combination with IoT
Data evaluation for optimization in the industry holds great potential. Unfortunately, these potentials are currently not easily realized with the tools used in practice. The increased penetration of IoT in the industry gives hope that data collection will become an optimum for the gathering of information.
In summary, it was a really successful start. In the end, we didn’t do more than experiment and use well-known methods from marketing and Lean Startup. Through implementation and direct customer contact, we receive direct feedback. This is pleasant and sometimes unpleasant at the same time, but it ensures quick recognition and this is important to us.
I am looking forward to next year!