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IoT Platforms meet Web 3.0

Speakers: Nicolas A. Duerr, Jose Fernández-Díez, Alber Peci, Christian Sander

As the digital landscape evolves, the gap between the status quo and the IoT realm expands. The phenomenon known as the “oracle problem” is one of the main focus points for several industries when trying to unify the physical world and the digital world.

This process grows in difficulty as the existing IoT platforms are integration-driven in terms of DLT but their participants are not willing to share their data with others. European IoT insiders Nicolas A. Duerr, Jose Fernández-Diéz, Albert Peci and Christian Sander, look into how transitioning to Web3 could offer solutions to these problems, leaning towards openness, transparency and trust.

Most companies want to consume data from others but are not willing to share their own data - this hinders network effects between the platform participants, says Duerr.

Most of the 600 IoT working platforms in the world are still industry-specific, with specific use cases and little network effects. According to Fernández-Díez, this starts in the sensing technology, moving on to affect the whole processing of data and its application.

There is a need for intelligent ready-to-use custom solutions but, to provide them, we need a standard which allows and enables the exchange of data between platforms in a unified way, adds Albert Peci.

This kind of open sourcing would necessarily have to be compliant with GDPR so that companies would not have to deal with trusting the platforms with their data, especially in a B2B context. Instead, it would never leave their servers but the algorithm would move to them. This is called Compute-To-Data.

This kind of infrastructure would allow a marketplace not only for data or trained models but also for the algorithms to do the analysis, which in turn would provide the companies with a new source of revenue. Moreover, Sander adds that the accuracy of the resulting statements should be proven by independent authorities or roles.

The best system for managing digital identities and their properties is worth nothing if the truth from the real world cannot be transferred credibly to the digital one.

Sander adds that in a next step, those independent roles could also authorize devices to check the credibility of properties.

Above all, we need to continue learning how to use new technologies to share data in a decentralized way while keeping sovereignty over the data at the owner. Then, have a strong legislation has to be established to protect these data honeypots, which could become valuable attack services for malicious attackers, as well as to found an open marketplace where a fair and transparent price can develop. Data security is a major challenge for organizations and a key capability that platforms must offer if they aim to be successful.

The European cloud ecosystem Gaia-X provides a common set of protocols and rules to enable interoperability between different service and data providers. Customers can now select offers from different providers across platform boundaries. “Providing a trust framework and open standards would start the shift from a data platform economy to a true data economy”, concludes Peci.

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