Jim Kohlenberger recently released a paper outlining what the Internet’s third act might look like. He is a former White House policy adviser to two U.S Presidents and is President of JK Strategies – a public policy consulting practice.

The report points out a now well understood concept by the geekiest amongst us, the “Internet of Things”. Marissa Mayer, Google’s Vice President of Location and Local Services, back in May 2010 started explaining in her presentation entitled: “The Physics of Data”, what the impact of the average person uploading 15 times more data in 2009 than they did just three years ago, might do to the web as we know today.

In hi report, Jim Kohlenberger outlines that the nternet has undergone three major revolutions in connecting: places then people and now on its way to connect things. In it Jim Kohlenberger outlines a series societal benefits but also the risks that may stifle this coming revolution.


Smarter transportation: mobile applications like Waze are already in that field, connecting cars to each other:
Fully utilizing smart traffic technology could cut fuel consumption on urban roadways by as much as 20 percent
Smarter energy and better environment: By 2020, the utility sector is expected to make up to 62% of M2M connected devices
Smarter Business
Smarter payments /POS: One especially powerful device application is new point-of-sale services that can create new business opportunities, give consumers more choices, and created new pay-as-you go business models. Smarter homes
Smarter Security
Smarter Cities
Smarter healthcare and patient monitoring
All of this will be accelerated by technological advances; Moor’es Law making it that faster, smaller, smarter, and more capable devices are possible every 18 months. Higher resolution sensors can enable to us to connect to our world in ways beyond just our seix senses. Steve Jobs was definitely on to something by democratizing access to touch devices; thin film technologies could soon turn almost any surface into a connected touchscreen display, and enable affordable intelligence to be implanted into almost anything. Near Field Communication (NFC) technologies can enable new forms of mobile commerce and better human comuter interaction can unlock new applications.

google/Ipsos’ latest research report on Mobile Internet and Smartphone Adoption is already demonstrating a current trend in the 3.0 direction where people are now more often using phone-like devices than laptops or desktops to access the internet.

Stifling Risks. This coming digital device deluge will further accelerate mobile opportunity and exacerbate the looming spectrum crunch. But lack of available spectrum could stall, stifle, or even stop these benefits from coming to fruition.

Facilitating Steps

Five key steps are advocated by the report:

Catalyze innovation Through a Wireless Innovation Fund (WIN)
Accelerate Smart infrastructure Development and Deployment
Advance a Smarter Electric Grid to Boost Efficiency and cut energy costs
Speed up the Medical Device Approval Processes for Wireless Connected Technologies
Ensure that more of these connected devices are made in America by Supporting American Leadership in Advanced Manufacturing
The Full report can be accessed below. Privacy remains is of course a concern and plenty of conspiracy theories can be imagined from here. What’s the craziest one you can think of? Let us know in the comments below.

The Internet’s Third Act: The Connected Device Decade

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