Toward Networking Humans and Objects — At the Edge

co-authors — Giovanni Guerri, Nicola Iotti, Simone Cirani and Marco Picone — @caligoodev

As the world of computing evolved over the last 30 years — from the mainframe to the cloud and now to the edge — access network architecture and technology has unfortunately failed to keep up with this evolution. These networks were designed and functionally remain a system of “pipes” moving “bits”. To date, their purpose has been to conveniently move information from clients to the cloud or web-based applications around the globe. With respect to its technical advancement, intellectual investment in access network architecture has been limited to boosting access point performance or adding features such as analytics and cloud-based management, but the fundamental network architecture, the foundation (or bridge) critical to data transfer, computing, device control and communication is essentially the same as designed and built 30 years ago.

When we think of the global “infrastructure” issues facing advanced economies — like a rusting bridge over a river (view image above) that is indispensable for commerce between cities, regions or countries, we see similarities, an at-risk rusting access network bridge that can easily become “temporarily” out of service or worst — closed for extended repairs.

Our thesis is that there will be massive challenges on the access network bridge. This future pain represents enormous network design and investment opportunity.

So — Why is access network architecture so vitally important?

Staggering Growth in Demand for Internet Connectivity

Because over the near term, the magnitude in the increase in demand to connect to access networks will be staggering. The effect of this conflation of humans and objects was clearly not a concern when the existing network architecture was designed and deployed. A conflation that will also create network stress and presents the opportunity to innovate. We believe ideation for access network architecture and its mission critical purpose needs to be considered as a high priority for business leaders in networking and computing, in cybersecurity, in the OEM space — across all business categories.

For our part, we see the future in the present and focused our attention and intellectual capital on underlying elements in order to have a meaningful impact on the computing and IoT economy.

It’s our firm belief that “focus determines (y)our reality.”

During the nascent stage of developing Caligoo’s technology — let’s describe it as the lab phase — it became crystal clear to us how transformative our technology is for access networks and more broadly how it impacts computing and IoT strategies in categories and markets — robotics, manufacturing, healthcare, hospitality, retail, energy, cybersecurity, cities, buildings and homes — and this list is incomplete. Essentially, the Caligoo technology redefines the meaning of network protocols by creating a new category — the cognitive network — allowing for unique and customized (or modular) flexibility in network infrastructure that currently does not exist and which sets the stage (or are building blocks) to design future services (e.g. augmented reality, AI and cognitive machines) for and uses of access networks. As a result, we have created a flat and flexible software solution (and methodologies) for computing and the IoT technologies that we predict will emerge for humans and objects in all categories and markets that embed the use of access networks in their product design and/or in their business model.

Our idea is to have a global approach to a future that is predictive by the present opportunities originated by the explosion in the quantity and heterogeneity of connected devices (e.g. activity where humans and robots or robots and wearables, sourced by different OEM’s, cognitively interact on the network) and the ever increasing complexity related to services and applications based on real-time interaction, connectivity and mobility. Fundamentally, we are not talking about adding advanced features or fancy applications to the traditional network construct of “pipes” moving “bits”.

Instead, our team has designed, built and shipped a new category of access networks — from scratch — a cognitive software platform that lays to waste the existing “pipes” moving “bits” assumption and changes its future role in connecting people and smart objects. The consequences of this new category of cognitive networks — for computing — are huge.