Tiny computers have big implications for the Internet of Things

CREATED May 15, 2014

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MILWAUKEE - Even though it's only a little bit bigger than an index card, Intel's Galileo computer is moving some big things.

The new computer is a vital part in the ever growing Internet of Things: an invisible web of internet-connected devices running everything from remote controlled thermostats to freight trains.
At the Internet of Things conference in Milwaukee, Joe McCann with Intel used the tiny computer to run a model train from his iPad, demonstrating a scaled down version of what freight companies are doing across the country.
"If the system is overheating, if we've got a weight distribution problem on there, we're going to be able to see it and take action from another location," he said.
The same technology that helps companies ship products across the country could also save consumers money in the grocery store.
"There are new devices that, when you're walking through a grocery store, will pop up something on your phone maybe some kind of deal that's going on," he said.
"It's actually going to be run by a computer under the rack."
The technology isn't stopping at stores, either. McCann believes we'll soon see the Internet of Things spreading to our homes, popping up in places like refrigerators that let you know when food is spoiled or a thermostat you can adjust from your smartphone.