David E. Culler, UC Berkley on RESTful Sensor Networks

Today, Vlad and I had the chance of taking part to a talk from David E. Culler from UC Berkley, one of the main TinyOS contributors.

While Vlad is going to summarize the talk a bit later here, I’d like to talk a bit more about the end of the talk. One one of his slides he had a figure of what he would like to see implemented on WSNs at the node level. Besides a comprehensive IPV6lowpan (aka 6lowpan) stack he mentioned an implementation of HTTP and, moreover, a web server!

The next slide was about sense making and semantics. There he briefly mentioned the use of WS-* standards on sensor nodes (WSDL, SOAP, XML) for creating composite applications. He went on saying he was not sure XML was the right thing to use there and suggested exploring the RESTful approaches 😉

Two nice comments coming from somebody we (and the WSN community, I believe) have great respect for. Afterall, our (and yours, as a reader/maker of WOT) idea of WOT based on the existing web standards as well as this concept of semantic mashups of real-world services (e.g. Are you energy efficient?) might not be that silly.

After the presentation we had the chance to talk a bit to David about this matter. He basically said REST worked great for a number of applications they developed. He said he believed in that web-oriented model and suggested that simple ideas are often badly perceived by peers but still might be a really valuable, especially when it comes to bringing the technology closer to the real people.

A nice bowl of fresh air after having to fight for the WOT ideas for a while now! The Web of Things is going towards the right direction, let’s keep working hard on making it simple!

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