Last week, my friend, Metilda, and I went for a Amazon Web Service User Group (AWSUG) meetup. It was a pretty enjoyable experience and AWS presented on their latest update – Internet of Things SDK.
In case you have no idea what Internet of Things (IoT) means, I’ll do a really quick introduction to it. IoT devices are electronic devices with network connectivity that allows the collection and exchange of data. An example would be a LED lightbulb connected to a Raspberry Pi with wireless network. We would then be able to switch the LED lightbulb on or off through applications or software installed on our computer, mobile phone or other devices.
Coincidentally, I’ve also met Alex, the guy who I previously networked with during Walkabout@SG. We had a little chat after his presentation.
In his presentation, Alex talked about how AWS IoT can be used with Amazon Echo and Raspberry Pis to play a tic-tac-toe game. The tic-tac-toe game was played using 9 Rasberry Pis, with LED displays, that were connected to the Internet through WiFi. He issued voice commands to Amazon Echo to initiate the game. I recorded a demonstration of what he has done, do watch the following video.
So basically, the state of the Raspberry Pis are controlled using “Things Shadow”, which acts as a middle-man for states. Let’s say if the Pi was to get disconnected from the Internet and the command to switch off its LED was issued, the Pi’s LED will not switch off (for obvious reasons, of course). What “Things Shadow” will do is that it will save the “switch off” state and once the Pi gets reconnected to the Internet, the Pi will then switch off its LED. This is very useful for IoT devices as network connectivity is not guaranteed on them.
AWS’s IoT SDK also has other various features for you to play around with, so do make sure to try it out. And if you’re interested in getting an Amazon Echo for yourself, it’s available on the Amazon web store.
Thanks for reading and have a great day ahead!