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Led By Nest, 'Thread' Might Be Most Promising IoT Initiative Yet

Unknown Lamer posted about a month and a half ago | from the n+1-standards dept.

Networking 79

An anonymous reader writes Nest, Big A%@ Fans, Yale door locks, ARM, Freescale, Samsung and Silicon Labs launch the Thread Group, a standards initiative for using 6LoWPAN-based network technology with mesh capabilities optimized for home automation. Because it blends IPv6 with low-power 802.15.4 radios, a layer of security, peer-to-peer communications, and other special sauce for whole-house connectivity, Thread looks extremely promising in an increasingly crowded field. Plus, millions of units of enabled products are already deployed by way of Nest's little-known Weave technology. There's a press release. Thread is based on open technology, but it's not clear that the protocol specifications will be available for non-members. No hardware changes are required for devices with 802.15.4 radios, and the group claims the new protocol fixes enough flaws in existing standards (mostly ZigBee) to be worth the software upgrade. Promises include increased reliability (mesh network with multiple routing points), lower power use (by not requiring sensors to wake up for traffic from other sensors), and easier bridging between the mesh network and Internet (thanks to using IPv6).

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WTF (3, Funny)

rossdee (243626) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456011)

Would someone like to translate the summary into english?

" and other special sauce "

Is this open sauce or propriety like whats on KFC

Re:WTF (3, Funny)

Sockatume (732728) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456185)

"If you can't season it, you don't known it."

RMS prepares scrambled eggs using home-grown peppers according to a GPL recipe.

"2014 is the year of Linux on the hot dog".

Re:WTF (2)

halivar (535827) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456187)

In laymen's terms, they've found a way to upding the samoflanges by a full quarter millithingy while preserving the quantum resonance of the flux capacitor. Theoretically this could mean you get an extra bar on your WLAN while sitting in the dining room. Could be the biggest thing since token rings.

Re:WTF (2)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456303)

You kiss your mother with that mouth?

Re:WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456693)

No my mother, but your mom seems to like it.

Re:WTF (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about a month and a half ago | (#47457247)

No my mother, but your mom seems to like it.

Dad?

Re:WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47459187)

Yeah, him, too.

Re:WTF (1)

billstewart (78916) | about a month and a half ago | (#47460735)

Luke???

Re:WTF (1)

davester666 (731373) | about a month and a half ago | (#47462719)

Well, he is one of several who could possibly be your dad...at least from what I could see on a variety of video tapes I rented...

Re:WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456317)

Great. So you're telling me I'll have to upgrade my entire home automation system again just to run my turboencabulator wirelessly?

Re:WTF (1)

Noah Haders (3621429) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456619)

Didn't apple already solve this problem with home kit? Why reinvent the wheel, especially with google at the helm.

Re:WTF (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456191)

Agreed, I've no idea what this article is about. It's like a word jumble and I can pick out the words "Home automation" and "Nest" so I think it has to do with thermostats... but it could just as likely be about Barbeque sauce... I've no idea.

Re:WTF (2)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456877)

Agreed, I've no idea what this article is about.

The first clue was when the author wrote "A%@" instead of "Ass". "Big Ass Fans" has a donkey in their logo. It is okay to say "ass" when referring to a donkey. Even the KJV Bible uses the word. It only has to be written as "A%@" when referring to a human posterior. Just like it is okay to say "dam" when you precede it with "hydroelectric" or "beaver". It is only cursing if you append an "n". If the author doesn't even understand the basic rules of obfuscating profanity, it is unlikely that anything else will be right.

Re: WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456933)

You said "beaver"!

Re: WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456967)

You mean, like, "Jesus rode on his ass"?

Re:WTF (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456891)

My cynical self translates it to "more security nightmares.", even with "banking class security" as touted:

That deadbolt might be cool that opens via BlueTooth... but the reason I use high security mechanical locks [1] is that some guy with a magnet can't wave it and open the lock, or the BT security had corners cut so someone can make a universal lock opener, similar to a TV-B-Gone, except for deadbolts.

That burglar alarm remote is cool as well... but I like having my remote change the door from going off instantly to a delay. That way, I have the ability to use a duress code. I also like not having someone with remote access set it off in the middle of the night.

The thermostat? Someone deciding to turn off the A/C, turn on the furnace, just so my pets overheat and die? No thank you.

The fire alarm? Someone deciding to hack it so it constantly calls the FD while I'm at work... no thank you.

The refrigerator? If someone can shut someone else's fridge off via the Internet, causing their food to spoil, they would.

Others can have their IoT. I'll continue to pull out my key and lock my front door, and take the time to push the silence button on my fire alarm if I burn something in the kitchen. Technology for technology's sake can do more harm than good.

[1]: The ideal is Abloy Protec2 + CLIQ for the keys. This way, even if someone were able to 3D scan/print my key, the CLIQ chip will keep the lock from opening. Not cheap, but insurance covers forcible entry... they don't cover entry via bumping/lockpicking.

Re:WTF (2)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a month and a half ago | (#47459733)

I was laughing because we're involved with 6LoWPAN at work, and I chuckle everytime someone says that because I can't help but think of Big Trouble in Little China.

Basically, Zigbee was a so-so standard early on but the later versions are silly as they want to use XML when most of the devices are on a severely limited bandwidth. 6LoWPAN is essentially ipv6 for underpowered devices on underpowered network links. 802.15.4 relates to low bandwidth wireless networks (mesh or otherwise).

A lot of Internet of Things is just like The Cloud, a marketing term which can be stretched and morphed to mean whatever it is you want it to mean. A lot of these networks will not be on the internet per se or addressible from the outside world, despite using IPv6. Some networks are very proprietary despite nods towards the standards, and these exist and are widely deployed today. Basically this new announcement is political (like most "standards"), it's just another consortium of vendors declaring that they like a certain subset of standards. No one is creating any new standards based upon technical merit from what I can see.

Re:WTF (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456249)

Would someone like to translate the summary into english?

" and other special sauce "

Is this open sauce or propriety like whats on KFC

Since when is the NSA referred to as "KFC"?

Oh, I'm sorry...was that just too much truth for you? Yeah, I know. Go ahead, label me as a Troll. At least you'll feel a little better about the obvious.

Re:WTF (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | about a month and a half ago | (#47457607)

Would someone like to translate the summary into english?

"Buy My Book! Buy My Book! Buy My Book! ....."

'Big Ass Fans' (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456019)

Seriously? There is a business called 'Big Ass Fans'?

I don't want to live on this planet anymore.

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (4, Informative)

thebigmacd (545973) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456029)

http://www.bigassfans.com/ [bigassfans.com]

They are actually quite a successful and respected company.

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (1)

Muad'Dave (255648) | about a month and a half ago | (#47459003)

There's a big ass fan at a local BBQ joint - Buz & Ned's [buzandneds.com] . The thing is monstrous.

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (1)

jrmann1999 (217632) | about a month and a half ago | (#47460965)

Pricey, what do they offer in terms of real-world savings? $990 for a house fan is going to be a steep hill to climb in the Lowes/Home Depot retail space.

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about a month and a half ago | (#47461273)

Better not tell him about the coca-cola cocaine name connection, he might jump off a bridge.

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (2)

Chrisq (894406) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456045)

Seriously? There is a business called 'Big Ass Fans'?

I don't want to live on this planet anymore.

Some donkeys get quite hot - they're filling a niche

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (1)

Dins (2538550) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456071)

The fact that there IS a business called "Big Ass Fans" actually makes me want to live on this planet - at least for a little longer.

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (2)

Zembar (803935) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456079)

Obligatory really old XKCD: http://xkcd.com/37/ [xkcd.com]

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (1)

Jose (15075) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456099)

...have you seen their fans? http://cdn2.bigassfans.com/images/BAF-Dairy1.jpg [bigassfans.com]

I don't think there is another accurate way to describe them. other than, 'whoa, that is a big ass fan!'

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456973)

The Big Ass Fans are quite spendy.

Their residential fan line that will use the technology, the Haiku, starts at $900. The add-on that makes it a smart fan (i.e., recognition that a person is in the room, etc.), is another $150.

At release, the application is going to be iPhone only. It will be 1/2 to 1 year for the Android app.

Re:'Big Ass Fans' (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47457673)

Every big ass deserves a fan.

That good, eh? (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456031)

The 'insecure-device-to-internet-attachment-protocol' field is crowded with nominally standard and/or standards-based flavors, generally not the sort that play well together, each with its own acronym soup, optimistic vender coalition, and lofty promises. Does this one have anything going for it aside from the installed base of Nest thermostats?

Re:That good, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456403)

If you read the press release they claim this:

"Secure networks: Thread networks feature secure, banking-class encryption. Thread closes identified security holes found in other wireless protocols and provides worry-free operation."

Given the long history of supposedly-secure wireless protocols that turned out to be horribly insecure after closer examination, I'll have strong doubts until (if) they provide the source code for others to scrutinize.

Re:That good, eh? (1)

master_kaos (1027308) | about a month and a half ago | (#47457629)

Well OpenSSL provided the source code for others to scrutinize and look at how long that took

Re:That good, eh? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47462413)

Yes. Releasing the source would only mean I would have regular doubts rather than "strong" ones ;-)

Re:That good, eh? (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456773)

Here is the thing, that is often missed by these types of technology insertions into typical analogue world, they are usually LOCKED in such a way, that they cannot be extended or upgraded easily, and because they don't include "what happens when script kiddies can crack the security in two seconds" upgrade plans. Because replacing something that requires a small level of skill break (tumbler locks) with one that requires no skill (just download MSTRLOCK-CRK-ZIP) is infinitely better /sarcasm

I'll wait till 3.0 of the spec is released and all the kinks are worked out.

Re:That good, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47457835)

Here is the thing, that is often missed by these types of technology insertions into typical analogue world, they are usually LOCKED in such a way, that they cannot be extended or upgraded easily, and because they don't include "what happens when script kiddies can crack the security in two seconds" upgrade plans. Because replacing something that requires a small level of skill break (tumbler locks) with one that requires no skill (just download MSTRLOCK-CRK-ZIP) is infinitely better /sarcasm

I'll wait till 3.0 of the spec is released and all the kinks are worked out.

Make downloading things like that, illegal. Problem solved forever.

Re:That good, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47461077)

Make downloading things like that, illegal. Problem solved forever.

Which sounds good to you because you're an idiot. If you had any inkling of what that would actually mean, you would be able to see quite clearly that it would work neither legally nor technologically.

It's also a rather stunning level of naïveté which assumes that someone intending to commit a crime will avoid obtaining the tools to do so because they're illegal.

Re:That good, eh? (1)

mlts (1038732) | about a month and a half ago | (#47459217)

The advantage of a even an easy-bump tumbler lock is that it requires physical presence to do that, with immediate risk (big dog waiting for his/her next meal behind the front door.)

The problem with these devices is that someone can be -anywhere- and break them. Done right, one button push from a script kiddie in Elbonia can unlock hundreds of thousands of deadbolts without warning, and no way for the perp to ever face consequences. This can be done either out of sheer malice, or perhaps extortion/blackmail against each and every user of the device, as well as the device maker.

Of course, if they have an easy mechanism to get flashed, that means an easy mechanism to get hacked, or perhaps bricked as well.

I can put packages down for a second while I stick my key in the lock. Fumbling for an app on my smartphone to unlock the deadbolt actually would take longer.

Re:That good, eh? (1)

billstewart (78916) | about a month and a half ago | (#47460881)

That's why you want the app on your smartphone to be always running in the background, noticing that it just heard an SSID from your home Wifi, and starting to poll for the front door-lock lowpan so it can unlock the door when you're walking toward it. OTOH, it also needs to do the right thing if you leave your phone in your purse or briefcase on the chair by the front door.

Re:That good, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47461263)

If we had to have a deadbolt operated via standard protocols, I'd leave Wi-Fi well alone.

Instead, I'd use Bluetooth which works without having to be on any other network, much less have Internet access. It is ideal because of the power savings it offers versus Wi-Fi. Bluetooth (assuming a sane pairing mechanism with a six digit ID from one device typed on the other) has far better encryption than just the single shared secret of most Wi-Fi installations. Ideally, the PIN shown should be on an e-Ink display normally covered up, so re-pairing the deadbolt to another Bluetooth device can't be done without some dissassembly.

The next thing would be the app that runs atop the BT stack. This app shouldn't run in the background because there are many other apps that do this and cause issues, no matter how the coders promise that they don't take up much space. Instead, the app should initally set up a pre-shared key, as well as swap public keys between devices.

From there, when the user presses the unlock or lock button on their phone's app, the app starts the handshake process, the lock then presents a non-repeatable nonce (randomly generated number, could even just be a hash of the data to a high precision), the app signs it with its key and adds what command the lock should do (unlock or lock), and the lock should either accept it or give the middle finger.

One (4, Funny)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456059)

One protocol to supervise them all, One mesh to find them
One protocol to bring them in, and in the darkness bind them.

In Mountain View, where the Shadows lie.

(Hey, sorry. It's early.)

Re:One (2)

Joe Gillian (3683399) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456155)

Your post just gave me the terrible, terrible mental image of RMS in an eagle costume attempting to fly so that he can drop a printed-out spec sheet into the fires of Mt. Redmond.

Re:One (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456225)

Mountain View is Google, not Microsoft - so the Redmond reference is a bit off.

Re:One (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a month and a half ago | (#47459765)

Microsoft has a big-ass building in Mountain View, right in the middle of all the big-ass Google buildings, and they have big-ass Microsoft signs as if to say "don't forget about us dammit!"

Re:One (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47457133)

Surely you mean "where the marketing teams lie"...

Re:One (1)

T.E.D. (34228) | about a month and a half ago | (#47458821)

In Mountain View, where the Shadows lie.

Hey! In Mountain View that's called "marketing".

OK (1)

koan (80826) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456093)

I'm all for automation and I think it looks promising.
What I don't want to see are solutions that are dependent on outside resources (for example SIRI on the iPhone, it has to use a connected server to do what it does), I prefer to see solutions that are autonomous, inclusive and complete without the need for Internet or an outside server (unless you choose to do so)

Re:OK (2)

internerdj (1319281) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456161)

It does look nice but next time we make a hardware standard can we avoid naming it so close to an important programming concept. Using threads in my thread device would get incredibly annoying in the comments and source searches.

Re:OK (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47459219)

Good point. How hard would it have been to call it THRED?

Re:OK (2)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456169)

Same. I'm wondering when all this external provider bullshit ("Cloud") is going away and we can just have the smartphone connect to the Wifi, pulling out Avahi and mDNS to find devices, then ask the devices about their Internet connectivity. The device can say, "I have this public [IPv6] address", or it can say, "Connect to me through this service". You could configure the device for either. Key exchange with it through the local Wifi so you have PKI both ways.

Re:OK (2)

NotInHere (3654617) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456309)

It is going away when:
1.(
a) one guy implements it in open source (likely) and it has the neccessary features (less likely) and usability (least likely), and which will get popular (rather unlikely)
OR
b) people become less greedy and companies get popular which get money by selling the devices and not the data or ads on the devices.
)
AND
2. Internet providers assign static ipv6 subnets (perhaps additionally to the dynamic privacy-friendly ones) (hey they could use this for lock-in: change your provider, change your bookmarks)

It took a long time since cyanogenmod came out, and even CM isn't fully respecting the user in its default setup, and CM still lacks some drivers.

Re:OK (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456537)

IPv6 privacy extensions are elective, and operate inside a /48 or /56 as assigned.

Re:OK (1)

NotInHere (3654617) | about a month and a half ago | (#47457221)

privacy extensions only rotate the local host part of the address, the subnet prefix (which is unique but neither static nor regularly changing for your router box) stays untouched. my post was about the subnet prefix. It would be great for the providers to assign a static one and a dynamic one.

Re:OK (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456505)

Exactly what looks promising? They don't say anything about the technology. Well, nothing that hasn't been said before anyway. There are solutions based on this technology out there today. What is it that they are providing? Help me out here...

Re:OK (1)

Sloppy (14984) | about a month and a half ago | (#47457691)

What I don't want to see are solutions that are dependent on outside resources

This is totally understandable but TFA is about a tech, not a product. Relax. I think the whole point of this is that people will be able to build stuff out of this. i.e. you'll google "arduino thread" and instead of just seeing programmers talk about concurrency, you'll also see some networking stuff in your search re--

Fuck. Guys, why did you have to call it "Thread?" WTF were you thinking? I declare: strike one.

holy word salad batman (1)

nimbius (983462) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456103)

This isnt an article summary, its a cry for help. Clearly op is choking on a viscous combination of scrabble letters and entropy from /dev/random
also...its Slashdot. im fairly certain the word "Ass" is probably the most welcoming explitive most of us will have the privilege of experiencing this afternoon.

holy word salad batman (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47458479)

Oh flip you muddy funster !

Obligatory XKCD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456129)

http://xkcd.com/927/

If you need home security... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456133)

You won't be networking everything in it. Period.

Security (2)

OzPeter (195038) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456163)

The press release and the website talk about banking class security, and things like Thread closes identified security holes found in other wireless protocols and provides worry-free operation.. But what I see is that every product in this wireless mesh network is a potential point of access from outside, and must be up-dateable if you are going to maintain a current "best practices" of threat mediation - which IMHO is going to be a security maintenance nightmare. So what am I missing?

And that's not even considering things like a DOS attack by firing a high-powered radio signal at your target.

Google Claws (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456649)

"He knows when you are sleeping, he knows when you're awake,
he knows when you will leave the house, so make sure your jewels are fake."

Google Claws already has your data - no need to "access from outside"
Nest sends it to the server at home cloudbase so the server can crunch the data to tell Nest what to do.

Just one bad elf out of the list with access to that data, and it will be sold to grinches everywhere.
Oh and that list includes Google as well as NSA elves.

Re:Security (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456843)

The press release and the website talk about banking class security

Well, have you actually looked at bank security lately?

Re:Security (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47457305)

If you care about security, you don't use wireless for networking. Wired is not impervious, but it requires the baddies to actually physically show up to compromise your network.

Re:Security (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month and a half ago | (#47457927)

Yeah, Nest isn't the company you can trust [engadget.com] when it comes to security [gigaom.com] . Their products have been known to have some serious flaws, showing they either don't prioritize that, or they don't know how to handle it. Pretty matters more to Nest than functional.

Much Happy. Very spying. NSA! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456321)

So secure. Wow!

Over complicating a simple problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456345)

Whole house connectivity - what am over complication of a simple problem.

I have light switches, a programmable thermostat that sets the heating or cooling based on time of day and I can overrride the program at any time.

When I worked wharehouses, they had the same things and at night we just turned off the circuit breakers and shut everything down.

Nice simple and very effective.

Looking at this technology, it looks very complex and prone to bugs, errors, and a large learning curve - to have a computer casically turn off a switch. And allows Big Ass Fans et al. to charge more for an otherwise low tech product(s).

And of course, this technology also uses electricity and I think it's a bit of a wash at best to have a server running to control all of this stuff in order to save energy.

We have this technology and folks are trying to use it because they can and because it adds to their margins. It also makes the product flakier. For example, all these computers are being put into devices that did quite well without them in order to make an old thing look new and add to the margins. It's getting near impossible to get a car that doesn't have all these touch screens and ridiculous buggy expensive electronics that add nothing to functionality.

Ranges - like cooking ranges - and other appliances have the same issue. What once was a reliable product is now a buggy POS that requires service people to come out and replace boards until it works again - only to have the board go out. And when the warranty is up, those boards go for $200 (even though they're made in China for $5).

And the more electronic shit we put into stuff, the more energy it uses.

Now we're into Jevon's Paradox.

Re:Over complicating a simple problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47459985)

I'm sorry you got fucked a range manufacturer. That sucks. You should name the brand and get some "avoid ____" word-of-mouth going.

to have a computer .. turn off a switch

Beats driving home and manually doing it. A lot of things are getting computerized which don't need it, but that doesn't mean there aren't some genuinely useful things to be done.

I can't imagine why anyone would want their cooking range networked, but can you really say there's nothing, no action and no sensors, that you might not want to remotely access or automate?

I realize inside the house there's going to be a lot of incentive to just run cat6 to (nearly) everything and plug 'em into power outlets on the walls, but outdoors and with low amounts of data (or indoors on something that you simply don't want to be cabled), don't diss low-powered networking. It's cool!

Part of the reason I've started learning about this stuff is that I have a real problem, where I have to drive home from work in the middle of the day, for a (somewhat) simple thing. I'd like to do this remotely (or automatically, with me maybe just getting a "yes, it happened" message) instead. You're never going to persuade me that it's dumb to try to avoid that trip, especially if you're bringing up energy usage. And all I've read about 802.15.4 networking is that we're talking about shit that can run for weeks on a little battery and literally forever if I put a $25 solar panel on it. Wasted energy is so not the problem with the tech we're talking about here, and when we start talking about missing work hours, hardware costs can pay for themselves.

HOW'S IT GO ?? OH YEAH !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456367)

All your bases are belong to us !!

Any UPB folks alive? (1)

Horshu (2754893) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456507)

I use UPB (kinda like X10 v2). It's still wired, but every device serves as a repeater, so signal strength shouldn't be an issue. It's pretty easy to program (I had an app turning lights on and off in about an hour).

What a mess (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | about a month and a half ago | (#47456511)

The "Internet of Things" is a giant clusterfuck of proprietary "standards" that change with almost every hardware generation, and devices that talks to outside servers whether you want them to or not. It makes home entertainment remotes look good in comparison. I for one won't be buying any of this stuff until that's sorted out.

ZigBee flaws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456679)

what's wrong with ZigBee? It already has mesh, routing, and has been in active use for a decade now. This sounds like an Embrace, Extended, & Extinguish.

Re:ZigBee flaws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456783)

How does ZigBee give Google and the NSA access to your personal data like this standard will?

Re:ZigBee flaws (1)

maliqua (1316471) | about a month and a half ago | (#47457355)

exactly why use a perfectly good standard when you can create a new one that only you and your closest friends can exploit (for a while)

Re:ZigBee flaws (1)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | about a month and a half ago | (#47459305)

One flaw is the lack of standards on the device level: how do light switches, dimmers, thermostats, locks, etc work together? Z-Wave defines a high level protocol for this and has a certification programme to ensure that devices work nicely together, but even so, interoperability is still hit and miss, especially for anything that goes beyond basic on/off stuff. ZigBee is starting to address this shortcoming, with the LightLink standard for instance, but there's still a long way to go.

One thing I am extremely suspicious about is the remark about the need for a central hub being a weakness. For one, you need a hub in order to add any sort of intelligence to your home automation setup. Without a hub you are not building a smart home, you're just doing remote control. Then, they mention the fact that existing technologies such as Zigbee and Z-wave are not easily married to the Internet. Well, with a hub you do not really need them to; for remote access, you tunnel into the hub or you use a gateway service that you can more or less trust.
Having/needing a hub is not a weakness, it ensures that you retain control over your local network. My fear is that for Thread there somehow will not be a local hub; it'll be in the Cloud, and subject to being raped for data 6 ways from Sunday.

Big Ass Fans (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47456797)

The company is called Big Ass Fans. We are grownups here.

NEST Is dead to me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47457341)

if the NSA wants to come into my home they can knock on the door and hope not to get shot like everyone else.
anything google touches is immediately poisoned.

Oh good, more name confusion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47457353)

I hope they use compiled Forth running in light-weight processes, so that they will be implementing Thread with multi-threaded threaded code.

Big Trouble in Mountain View (2)

T.E.D. (34228) | about a month and a half ago | (#47458961)

The nice thing about a LoWPAN network is that it can effectively stay up forever within its confined area. The problem with it is that it can go rogue if it comes in contact with a green-eyed girl, and it is quite susceptible to attacks from wisecracking truckers, and any hacker with access to a seven-demon bag.
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