A Tale of Moist Cheese

By Huw Martin

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I posted on LinkedIn recently a request for help from the network as we were looking for a really good credible speaker for an IT Director forum we’re hosting. The response was great (thanks to everyone who chipped in) but one of the suggestions made me think back to a previous speaker of one of our events hosted a few years ago by Virgin Money in Edinburgh.

The event was a small group of IT Directors/CIOs from companies across Scotland and the speaker was Dave Mitchell from Gartner. Dave tragically passed away some years ago but his teachings that night still resonate with me, and I’ve used his musings many times when discussing the Internet of Things with various clients since. Anyone who knew Dave will agree that he was a genius, and someone who totally embraced his inner geek.

It was this geekiness that came out in the IT Director forum in fantastic fashion.

He was discussing the Internet of Things and how he’d embraced it at home. He explained to the room how his house had been linked up to twitter and that he had various alerts set up for various different solutions around the homeThere were a few examples he shared with us; one being a doormat linked to pressure sensors and a Twitter account that would let him know when the dog wanted in – genius!

But the most memorable one was that he had mice in his house, and as most people would do, set up a number of mouse traps. The problem with these traps is that mice can be quite picky, and when the cheese in the traps dried out and went stale, they’d lose interest.

Dave decided to devise a clever system to monitor the moisture of the cheese in the mouse traps to ensure that it was fresh and therefore in prime mouse catching condition – he wasn’t joking – and like his dog doormat, the system alerted him by phone when the cheese needed replenishing.

Some people would say that this was taking it a bit too far but it showed years ago the practical applications of the internet of things and its growing impact on us all.

Does anyone else have any similar ingenious stories or home hacks to share?

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