Wily Scots develop search engine for ‘Internet of Things’

People have been promising us The internet of things for some time now (the term dates back all the way to 1999). Things were pretty slow to get off the ground but now it seems that it is big enough to need a search engine.

The term “internet of things” essentially refers to uniquely identifiable objects (things) and their virtual representations in an internet-like structure. A group of Scottish academics has developed a search engine that uses the connected sensors on these real-world objects to provide answers to search queries.

According to Tech World, the scientists at the University of Glasgow reckon they can collate data from sensors such as cameras and microphones, and cross-reference it with results from social networks such as Twitter.

That means that people can get detailed answers to questions like “What part of the city hosts live music events that my friends have been to recently?” and “How busy is the city centre?”

The project, known as SMART (Search engine for MultimediA Environment geneRated contenT), will reportedly be built on an open-source search engine technology known as Terrier that the university has been developing since 2004.

“SMART builds upon the existing concept of ‘smart cities’, physical spaces which are covered in an array of intelligent sensors which communicate with each other and can be searched for information,” said Dr Iadh Ounis, of the University of Glasgow’s School of Computing Science.

“The search results sourced from these smart cities can be reused across multiple applications, making the system more effective.”

The team hopes to test the system out on a real city some time in 2014.



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