Can Fog Computing really have a positive impact on Internet of Things?

Role of Fog in the Internet of Things

            The Internet has evolved in ways that we could never imagine, with innovations and communication happening at a remarkable rate. This has led to the implementation of new paradigms such as cloud computing, Fog computing, etc. The increasing use of Internet of Things (IoT) devices has popularized these paradigms in many systems today. The IoT devices generate or collect huge amounts of information, releasing pressure to the available data stores. Therefore, handling this data has become very complex and expensive, and it requires large data centers to store the information. An alternative solution to these challenges is the implementation of Fog computing. This paradigm is slowly becoming popular in computing because it provides an alternative method on how to access and store data. It gathers and distributes resources and services of network connectivity, storage, and computing. This maximizes data performance and utility and reduces energy consumption, time complexity and minimizes space.

Characteristics of Fog computing

     Storage, compute, and networking resources are the common building of cloud and Fog computing. Fog computing’s infrastructure is a decentralized one since data applications and storage are located somewhere between the cloud and the data source. Applications and processes are then concentrated in IoT devices and the network edges; therefore, data can be locally processed in IoT devices rather than being transmitted to the cloud for processing. Fog computing is characterized by low latency, location awareness, and edge location, making it easier to trace Fog’s origin to support endpoints with rich services at the edge of the network, especially to the applications with low latency, e.g., video streaming, gaming, etc.

            Also, Fog targets wide geographical distributed deployments. For example, the technology delivers high-quality streaming services to moving vehicles through the use of access points and proxies positioned along highways. Also, it supports mobility where it communicates effectively with mobile devices using LISP protocol. Fog nodes also are heterogeneous, where they come in different forms of factors. Therefore, it is possible to use Fog computing in activities involving real-time interactions. Fog computing also interplays with the cloud as well as supporting online analytic through ingestion and processing of data closer to the source.

Fog computing and IoT

            Cloud computing has faced several problems, especially in sustaining the demand for IoT applications. There is a lack of support for some trending apps, such as live video streaming apps and some gaming apps. Cloud computing is always centrally located; therefore, it lacks location awareness. Fog computing operates under the cloud, where it is present in large servers, and it helps address the challenges and bridge the gap between cloud computing services and IoT devices. Fog computing characteristics, such as mobility, location awareness, heterogeneity, low latency, support for real-time interaction, and geo-distribution and the cities and towns, make it an ideal paradigm to deliver SCV services such as safety, trace support, and analytics.

            Actuators are used in sensor networks to bring new dimensions by controlling the system or measuring the processes. The information is always bi-directional; that is, it moves from the sensor to sink and from the controller node to actuators. Also, wireless sensors and actuator networks were designed and developed to extend the battery’s life or make energy harvesting feasible. Mostly, wireless sensor networks are associated with low energy, low bandwidth, and small memory motes in a unidirectional fashion. Sensor networks are responsible for simple processing, forwarding data to the static sink, and sensing the environment.

            In conclusion, IoT has gained popularity and has become an integral part of peoples’ lives because of its ability to connect almost everything. However, traditional centralized cloud computing is faced with some issues such as failure of the network and high latency. Therefore, Fog computing acts as a unifying paradigm that will reduce latency, especially for time-sensitive applications. It will also help deliver a new breed of emerging services, and new applications will be developed.

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1 Response

  1. March 11, 2021

    […] Internet of Things (IoT) has drastically increased as this technology is impacting our daily lives in several domains. IoT […]

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