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Azure ISS and MQTT on the internet of things

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Some 26 BILLION devices will be on the Internet of Things (IoT) by 2020. Most technology and standardization around IoT is fairly new and adoption spotty. This means that implementations in the next decade will need to understand and live with a number of protocols. Microsoft’s venture into this domain is through the Azure ISS services. We talk about the MQTT protocol that is supposed to facilitate the communication with devices.

Two key protocols:

  • MQTT: a protocol specifically designed for device communication. Protocols like HTTP are much ‘chattier’ (yes, that’s a technical term) than terms like HTTP. The smallest message size in MQTT is 2 byte. It is primarily a publish subscribe protocol with publishers and subscribers connecting to a broker to get/send data.
  • HTTP: I won’t go into too much detail here since we are all very familiar with the protocol as a whole. The main advantage of HTTP/REST services is the vast variety of existing applications that already support the protocol.

The Azure ISS services are designed to act as brokers for each of these protocols.

Devices are added to the ISS dashboard with details of what data model (Schema) to send and receive from applications. The data coming back is added to an HD Insight database (Microsoft’s version of Hadoop / Big data) where the data is accumulated. Polybase can then be used to show this data in tools like Power BI reports from Excel.

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Muhammad Omer is the founding partner at Allied Consultants. Areas of interest for him are entreprenuership in organizations, IT Management, Integration and Business Intelligence.

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