OptoBlog

Server-side JavaScript for the IIoT

Posted by Matt Newton on Apr 6, 2017 8:00:00 AM

In a previous post we introduced JavaScript and discussed its widespread adoption as a result of its interoperability between web applications, particularly browsers.

In this post we’re going to tackle some ideas related to why JavaScript is poised to literally take over the Industrial Internet of Things as the software language of choice for IIoT developers.

We’ll also discuss why, if you’re an industrial automation engineer starting to think about the IIoT, it might be a good idea to brush up on your JavaScript skills.

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Topics: Internet of Things, IoT, PACs, RESTful server, IIoT, Industrial Internet of Things

Automation 101: Adding Control to AC Motors

Posted by Matt Newton on Mar 30, 2017 9:01:33 AM

In one of our previous blog posts we talked about AC motors, the workhorse of modern industrial automation. We learned how they use magnets, electromagnets, and magnetic fields to generate huge amounts of torque to run our industrial processes.

To understand how modern motor control works, let’s take a closer look at how a 3-phase AC induction motor works.

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Topics: Process control, Discrete control, Electronics, PACs

OptoNews: New Node-RED examples for developers

Posted by Jean Femia on Mar 29, 2017 3:56:19 PM

If you're using Node-RED and the nodes for SNAP PACs and groov—or if you're thinking about it but haven't startedcheck out our new Node-RED examples on developer.opto22.com

Node-RED is the open-source tool for digitally wiring together hardware devices, cloud services, databases, and more in simple logical flows.

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Topics: groov, Internet of Things, IoT, optonews, PACs, IIoT, Industrial Internet of Things, Node-RED, OptoNews 2017-03-29

OptoNews: Send temperature data to AT&T M2X in the cloud

Posted by Jean Femia on Mar 29, 2017 3:54:29 PM

Have you tried AT&T's Internet of Things (IoT) platform, M2X? 

If you're looking at IoT platforms, you'll want to see this new technical note. It shows you how to get real-world data, in this example a temperature in degrees F, to an AT&T M2X device in the cloud.

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Topics: Internet of Things, IoT, optonews, PACs, IIoT, Industrial Internet of Things, Node-RED, Data acquisition, OptoNews 2017-03-29

Are you protecting your SCADA system from ransomware?

Posted by Matt Newton on Mar 23, 2017 8:00:00 AM

In a previous blog post we covered what ransomware is and how it’s being used to target industrial users like water and wastewater SCADA systems.

Ransomware is basically when a hacker obtains control of your data, or even your control network and automation systems, and won’t relinquish control back to you until a ransom is paid.

It's a major potential threat against IIoT applications.

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Topics: PACs, Security, IIoT

Social Engineering: Your automation network's largest security vulnerability

Posted by Matt Newton on Mar 21, 2017 8:00:00 AM


When most people think about cyber security, they probably conjure up thoughts of someone locked away in a dark room, wearing the same grey hoodie for months. Staring at a screen for days at a time looking for just the right network packet to tell them where and how to attack. But that's not always how hacking is done.

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Topics: Process control, PACs, Networking, Security

Will Blockchain Secure Your Industrial IoT Network?

Posted by Matt Newton on Mar 16, 2017 8:00:00 AM

Most people relate the term blockchain to an Internet currency or peer-to-peer payment system called Bitcoin.

But there’s way more value to blockchain technology than just a payment system.

And it just might help us solve a lot of problems related to industrial cyber security, particularly in Industrial Internet of Things applications.

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Topics: Internet of Things, IoT, PACs, Security, IIoT, Industrial Internet of Things

Building the IIoT With DevOps

Posted by Matt Newton on Mar 14, 2017 8:00:00 AM

Sure, the industrial Internet of Things sounds cool. Real cool, in fact. But how do you do it and where do you get started?

For a self-proclaimed technology geek like myself, the industrial Internet of things (IIoT) is a pretty exciting topic. I wasn’t exactly born digital (individuals who have grown up with the current state of ubiquitous computing and communications).

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Topics: IoT, PACs, IIoT, Industrial Internet of Things

Adding Cognitive Computing To Industrial Automation

Posted by Matt Newton on Mar 9, 2017 8:00:00 AM

There’s a lot of talk these days about artificial intelligence, the cloud, and cognitive computing.

But what the heck do those things have to do with industrial automation, and why should automation professionals be getting up to speed on these technologies?

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Topics: Discrete control, Internet of Things, IoT, Machine builder, PACs, I/O, REST API, IIoT, Industrial Internet of Things

Your IoT middleware checklist

Posted by Matt Newton on Mar 2, 2017 8:00:00 AM

In a recent developer survey conducted by the Eclipse IoT Working Group, IEEE IoT, and Agile IoT, 40.8% of respondents indicated that the IoT solutions they were either currently building or planning to build are IoT platforms or IoT middleware.

Almost every large IT or OT company today has some form of IoT platform or middleware.

In fact, right now there are over 150 self-described IoT platforms in the market today. Not neccessarily created equally.

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Topics: Energy management, PLCs, IoT, PACs, REST, IIoT, Node-RED

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