Two Years on in Wales

In this time of restricted movement I was cheered to see this recent tweet in my feed. With Fresher’s Week at many Universities highlighting the start of a very different year for students in the UK, it brought back memories of our trips to North Wales where we met the staff and students at this fascinating and innovative college.

We ran presentations & workshops on LoRaWAN® and applications using The Things Network. The enthusiasm of all attendees, both from the college, and Welsh authorities was impressive. Teaching at the college takes place through the Welsh language, though they welcomed us, even with Mark presenting through his native Dorset. The college has extensive grounds and runs as a model farm giving the students practical skills as they manage cattle, pig, forestry and crop units for profit and sustainability.

On our first trip, day two had to be abandoned due to heavy snow causing the college to close for several days, a surprise for us all given the time of year. Completing the event later, saw sensors deployed in the piggery and elsewhere. They have continued to develop ideas around the value of long range low power wireless sensing connected to the unique visual dashboard created by Mark and two students from UTC Reading.

We are looking forward to being able to return to such in person events, though next years The Things Conference will be an extended virtual one.

Happy 5th Birthday

The Things Network posted about their 5th year anniversary in August 2020. I had in mind that they started in July, but like most projects, pinning the start to a date is a difficult task and usually done retrospectively. I heard a similar discussion about Google’s birthday.

The Things Network 5th Anniversary card graphic
The Things Network 5th Anniversary August 2020

I learnt about The Things Network (TTN) in November 2015 when Mark Stanley presented the project at the monthly Reading Geek Night event. He concluded by saying how he loved the project for it’s open source aims and goal of bringing simple connectivity to everyone across the globe. Mark wanted to make Reading and Berkshire a leading adopter of the technology, and invited the audience to join him creating TTN Reading. I loved the idea too! The rest is history and is written up in other posts here and elsewhere. We will celebrate our 5 years in November and I am keeping my fingers crossed that we can do so face to face, rather than via video. We haven’t stopped during lock-down, though our projects have been hampered and rollouts delayed, as Autumn arrives we are seeing unseasonable green shoots, which is great, and as I think on how TTN has grown from zero to …. well, as they write in their blog ::

Together, we are embracing open standards, creating a breeding ground for innovation and pushing the boundaries of IoT. Among the most significant achievements of these years are:
117 000 users from 150 countries
1000 communities
13 000 gateways
340 000 devices

And with this smart new look to Thingitude, here’s to the next 5! – Mike

#50GameChangers

Thames valley #50GameChangers – Thingitude’s Mike, Mark, Traecy and Vil

Thingitude selected as Thames Valley tech and digital future maker in ConnectTVT’s 50 Game Changers 2020 cohort

02 March 2020: Thingitude has been selected in ConnectTVT’s 50 Game Changers 2020 cohort. It joins the Thames Valley’s breakthrough tech and digital startups and scaleups, making global impact in their industries through market-changing technologies, innovation and world-class talent.

Thingitude delivers community-focused “Internet of Things” projects, and over the last year it has been working to prevent falls among older people in West Berkshire and to help women students feel safer walking home at night in Reading.

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Meet Traecy!

One of the big benefits of winning a project like the Falls Prevention System is that it has allowed us to grow the team, which is exactly the point of the Local Growth Fund.

I started my career in IT at 18 and am eternally grateful that a business was willing to take a chance on me, and I would like to do the same for other people. Thingitude has worked with students every summer since 2016 with great success and so it feels natural to hire a student as a full time trainee.

Say hello to our newest team member, Traecy!

Please meet Traecy Elezi, our new trainee programmer. She has just passed her 3 month probation period with flying colours and is a fully fledged member of the team.

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Falls Prevention System

Earlier this year the Thames Valley Berkshire Smart City Cluster launched a set of challenges which they wanted local businesses to tackle, and provided funding to bring these projects to life.

One of our bids won the competition and we are busy working away with our partners IoT Stars and Tendertec on our offering to help reduce the number of falls suffered by older people in West Berkshire. It is a fact of life that as we get into our senior years people tend to fall more often, and the injuries are more profound and recovery takes longer.

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