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Lacey Thoms

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Open Source & the Internet of Things: A Growing Companionship | @ThingsExpo [#IoT]

Drone control, once limited to proprietary software, has now entered the open source realm

Open Source and the Internet of Things: A Growing Companionship

It was recently revealed that Linux-powered drones were released that has unveiled a new frontier for open source software. Drone control, once limited to proprietary software, has now entered the open source realm. This opens up new possibilities of more flexible platforms for many Internet-connected objects as well as sparking conversation among the open source community about its potential relationship with the Internet of Things (IoT).

Open source software has allowed drone builders and programmers to create a platform using a free open source software development kit. In some cases, individuals can operate drones from a smartphone or tablet and include sophisticated features in the drone’s operating system, such as gyroscopes, cameras, altimeters and GPS. Open software development kits have the potential to allow individuals to create drone applications suitable for use in a wide range of fields and with a wide variety of physical shapes. Open source powered drones are proving to be more cost effective and accessible, meaning that they can easily be applied in more areas and for more uses besides their traditional military applications.

Open source software can also be used to create a platform for other Internet-connected objects, such as cameras, automobiles and household appliances. Open source software offers nearly endless possibilities for programming everyday objects by removing the barriers and expense imposed by proprietary software platforms.

Leveraging open source software enables developers to create products faster, through bypassing the lengthy proprietary development process. As such, if a developer feels a certain industry is lacking a particular technological solution, they can speed up time to market by creating a product based from open source software. For example, the creators of the open source Axiom camera allowed developers to fill a niche in the camera market with a video camera capable of taking cinema-quality videos well beyond the capabilities of the digital cameras that were currently available from proprietary platforms.

By democratizing the programming process, open source software makes it possible for developers to take an active role in creating more IoT objects that will help them in both their personal and professional lives.

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Lacey Thoms is a marketing specialist and blogger at Protecode, a provider of open source license management solutions. During her time at Protecode, Lacey has written many articles on open source software management. She has a background in marketing communications, digital advertising, and web design and development. Lacey has a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications from Carleton University.