Infrastructure Definitions

Search Definitions
  • A

    actuator

    An actuator is a mechanism that turns energy into a controlled motion.

  • addressability

    Addressability is the capacity for an entity to be targeted and found. To be addressable, an entity must be uniquely identifiable, which means that it must be associated with something -- typically an alphanumeric string, although there are other possibilities -- that is not associated with anything else that exists within that system.

  • C

    control network

    A control network is a network of nodes that collectively monitor, sense, and control or enable control of an environment for a particular purpose.

  • F

    fog computing (fog networking, fogging)

    Fog computing, also known as fog networking or fogging, is a decentralized computing infrastructure in which data, compute, storage and applications are distributed in the most logical, efficient place between the data source and the cloud.

  • G

    gateway

    A gateway is a network node used in telecommunications that connects two networks with different transmission protocols together.

  • H

    headless system

    A headless system is a computer that operates without a monitor, graphical user interface (GUI) or the typical peripherals used to control it, such as a keyboard and mouse. Headless computers are often used in embedded systems and servers.

  • I

    Internet of Everything (IoE)

    The Internet of Everything (IoE) is a concept that extends the Internet of Things (IoT) emphasis on machine-to-machine (M2M) communications to describe a more complex system that also encompasses people and processes.

  • IoT devices (internet of things devices)

    IoT devices, or any of the many things in the internet of things, are nonstandard computing devices that connect wirelessly to a network and have the ability to transmit data.

  • IPv6 address

    An IPv6 address is a 128-bit alphanumeric string that identifies an endpoint device in the Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6) addressing scheme. The new IP address format was created to enable the trillions of new IP addresses required to connect not only an ever-greater number of computing devices but also the rapidly expanding numbers of items with embedded computers in them.

  • item-level RFID (item-level radio frequency identification)

    Item-level RFID involves individual unit tagging, as opposed to tagging cartons or pallets of items.

  • L

    LPWAN (low-power wide area network)

    Low-power WAN (LPWAN) is a wireless wide area network technology that interconnects low-bandwidth, battery-powered devices with low bit rates over long ranges.

  • M

    machine-to-machine (M2M)

    Machine-to-machine, or M2M, is a broad label that can be used to describe any technology that enables networked devices to exchange information and perform actions without the manual assistance of humans.

  • mesh network topology (mesh network)

    A mesh network is a network in which the devices -- or nodes -- are connected so that at least some, and sometimes all, have multiple paths to other nodes.

  • microcontroller

    A microcontroller is a compact integrated circuit designed to govern a specific operation in an embedded system.

  • microserver

    A microserver, also known as a server appliance, is a compact, less expensive, modular hardware platform designed to make installation and maintenance simpler than traditional enterprise-class rack servers.

  • MQTT (MQ Telemetry Transport)

    MQTT (MQ Telemetry Transport) is a lightweight messaging protocol that provides resource-constrained network clients with a simple way to distribute telemetry information.

  • P

    pervasive computing (ubiquitous computing)

    Pervasive computing, also called ubiquitous computing, is the growing trend of embedding computational capability (generally in the form of microprocessors) into everyday objects to make them effectively communicate and perform useful tasks in a way that minimizes the end user's need to interact with computers as computers.

  • R

    reference architecture

    A reference architecture is a document or set of documents to which a project manager or other interested party can refer to for best practices. By using a reference architecture, a project team can potentially save time and avoid mistakes by learning from past experiences.

  • remote sensing

    Remote sensing is the use of various technologies to make observations and measurements at a target that is usually at a distance or scale beyond those observable to the naked eye.

  • S

    sensor hub

    A sensor hub is a connection point for multiple sensors that uses a multipoint control unit (MCU), coprocessor or digital signal processor (DSP) to compile and process data gathered from those sensors.

  • smart grid sensor

    A smart grid sensor is a small, lightweight node that serves as a detection station in a sensor network.

  • smart sensor

    A smart sensor is a device that takes input from the physical environment and uses built-in compute resources to perform predefined functions upon detection of specific input and then process data before passing it on.

  • T

    thing (in the Internet of Things)

    A thing, in the context of the Internet of things (IoT), is an entity or physical object that has a unique identifier, an embedded system and the ability to transfer data over a network.

  • trillion-node network

    A trillion-node network refers to a near future state wherein trillions of devices, people, organizations, places and things are connected to the Internet. The implications of this ubiquitous connectivity and complexity hold both promise and risk that require the attention of multiple stakeholders.

  • U

    ubiquitous sensor network (USN)

    A ubiquitous sensor network (USN) is one that connects all possible sensors in a given network or environment which, theoretically, could be global.

  • unique identifier (UID)

    A unique identifier (UID) is a numeric or alphanumeric string that is associated with a single entity within a given system.

  • W

    WSAN (wireless sensor and actuator network)

    A wireless sensor and actuator network (WSAN) is a group of sensors that gather information about their environment and actuators, such as servos or motors, that interact with them. All elements communicate wirelessly; interaction can be autonomous or human-controlled.

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