Computerworld reports on the emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT)--"where anything with intelligence (including machines, roads and buildings) will have an online presence"--and ways in which classic science-fiction scenarios are coming true. A representative from Cisco predicts that there will be 50 billion connected devices by the year 2020. Social networks would act as the connective tissue between them. "In the coming years, anything that has an on-off switch will be on the network...I foresee it in just about every industry and stream of life," he says. The IoT brings with it concerns about security and privacy protection. A representative from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology said, "Basic e-mail is still getting hacked, and we've had that for 25 years."
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