Vint Cerf is known as a “father of the Internet,” and like any good parent, he worries about his offspring — most recently, the IoT.
“Sometimes I’m terrified by it,” he said at the Heidelberg Laureate Forum in Germany. “It’s a combination of appliances and software, and I’m always nervous about software — software has bugs.”
The Internet of Things will offer the ability to manage many of the appliances we depend on, acknowledged Cerf, who won the Turing Award in 2004. With its ability to continuously monitor such devices, it also promises new insight into our use of resources, he said.
Devices such as Google’s Nest thermostat, for instance, can “help me decide how well or poorly I’ve chosen my lifestyle to minimize cost and my use of resources — it can be an important tool,” he said.
As with so many technological tools, however, there are plenty of potential downsides. Safety is one of them.