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Apache Kafka: The Cornerstone of an Internet-of-Things Data Platform

When it comes to the Internet of Things (IoT), many developers think in terms of microcontrollers, system-on-chip boards, single-board computers, sensors, and various other electronic components. While devices are undoubtedly the foundation of IoT, the core value of a connected solution lies in the data generated by these devices.

The devices layer is only the tip of the iceberg with the underlying data platform that is below the watermark tackling the heavy lifting. One of the key pillars of a robust IoT data platform is Apache Kafka, an open source software designed to handle massive amounts of data ingestion. It acts as a gateway to the data processing pipeline powered in the data center by Apache StormApache Spark, and Apache Hadoopclusters.

If you are a developer considering IoT as a career option, it is time for you to start investing in Apache Kafka. This article explores the role that Apache Kafka plays in deploying a scalable IoT solution.

Kafka: A High-Performance Ingestion Layer for Sensor Data

IoT devices comprise of a variety of sensors capable of generating multiple data points, which are collected at a high frequency. A simple thermostat may generate a few bytes of data per minute while a connected car or a wind turbine generates gigabytes of data in just a few seconds. These massive data sets are ingested into the data processing pipeline for storage, transformation, processing, querying, and analysis.

Each data set consists of multiple data points representing specific metrics. For example, a connected Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system would report ambient temperature, desired temperature, humidity, air quality, blower speed, load, and energy consumption metrics.

In a large shopping complex, these data points are frequently collected from hundreds of HVACs. Since these devices may not be powerful enough to run the full TCP networking stack, they use protocols like Z-Wave, and ZigBee to send the data to a central gateway that is capable of aggregating the data points and ingesting them into the system.

Read the entire article at The New Stack

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Janakiram MSV heads the Cloud Infrastructure Services at Aditi Technologies. He was the founder and CTO of Get Cloud Ready Consulting, a niche Cloud Migration and Cloud Operations firm that recently got acquired by Aditi Technologies. In his current role, he leads a highly talented engineering team that focuses on migrating and managing applications deployed on Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Windows Azure Infrastructure Services.
Janakiram is an industry analyst with deep understanding of Cloud services. Through his speaking, writing and analysis, he helps businesses take advantage of the emerging technologies. He leverages his experience of engaging with the industry in developing informative and practical research, analysis and authoritative content to inform, influence and guide decision makers. He analyzes market trends, new products / features, announcements, industry happenings and the impact of executive transitions.
Janakiram is one of the first few Microsoft Certified Professionals on Windows Azure in India. Demystifying The Cloud, an eBook authored by Janakiram is downloaded more than 100,000 times within the first few months. He is the Chief Editor of a popular portal on Cloud called www.CloudStory.in that covers the latest trends in Cloud Computing. Janakiram is an analyst with the GigaOM Pro analyst network where he analyzes the Cloud Services landscape. He is a guest faculty at the International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad (IIIT-H) where he teaches Big Data and Cloud Computing to students enrolled for the Masters course. As a passionate speaker, he has chaired the Cloud Computing track at premier events in India.
He has been the keynote speaker at many premier conferences, and his seminars are attended by thousands of architects, developers and IT professionals. His sessions are rated among the best in every conference he participates.
Janakiram has worked at the world-class product companies including Microsoft Corporation, Amazon Web Services and Alcatel-Lucent. Joining as the first employee of Amazon Web Services in India, he was the AWS Technology Evangelist. Prior to that, Janakiram spent 10 years at Microsoft Corporation where he was involved in selling, marketing and evangelizing the Microsoft Application Platform and Tools.