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Gates Foundation & Our IoT 2040: Nice Contrast

We're Focusing on the Longer Term & the Internet of Things

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation recently identified four keys areas in which to focus for the next 15 years: Health, Farming, Banking, and Education. Bill himself holds forth on a regular basis about the challenges facing many billions of people in the world, particularly in Africa, as well as the opportunities to save lives and change lives.

He does not seem naïve about the enormity of the challenges, and does not offer technology as a simple panacea to what ails the world. He also seems committed to respecting national sovereignty in implementing programs, difficult as that may be sometimes. And he seems to understand very clearly that even the vast wealth of his and his wife's foundation and its allies cannot hope to achieve signficant results on its own.

I would add Energy, Transportation, and Government to Bill's and Melinda's list-aware that the Foundation supports these areas and many others as well. In our efforts at the Tau Institute, we then focus on how the Internet of Things will play a role in these areas as well as societal improvement and transformation overall. We've also chosen a 25-year timeframe, an thus use the term IoT 2040 to describe our activities.

Our program includes research, events, consulting, and technical education. We have four overriding goals:

1. To spur beneficial economic development in all corners of the world
2. To reduce poverty & disease
3. To curtail violence as a way of settling disputes
4. To produce political and societal leaders who will maintain progress

We think a good way to measure progress is through the research we've been conducting for the past few years, which creates relative,"pound-for-pound" rankings that show how well nations are doing with respect to their available resources.

Our rankings reflect a lot of time spent, by me and by our associates and advisors, living in the various corners of the world. We integrate several technology and social factors into our algorithms -- on the one hand including average bandwidth, access to broadband, number of dataservers, on the other hand including income disparity, perception of corruption, human development, and the local cost of living.

The most dynamic countries should correlate well over time with those most quickly growing their economies in an equitable way.

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Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040) is Executive Director of the Tau Institute for Global ICT Research, with offices in Illinois and Manila. He is Conference Chair of @CloudExpo & @ThingsExpo, and Editor of SYS-CON Media's CloudComputing BigData & IoT Journals. He holds a BA from Knox College & conducted MBA studies at CSU-East Bay.

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