I read a paper called Toward User-Centric Feature Composition for the Internet of Things written by Zave, Cheung, and Yarosh. This was a good paper to start with because it defined what “Internet of Things” stand for and what is expected out of it.

Internet of Things in a broad sense stand for a smart home where sensors and actuators are connected through the Internet. So far, there are more complaints than satisfaction because people expect the system to behave “intuitively” which may not be so natural for computers. On top of that, each individual is a complex being distinct from others, which makes it hard to come up with a model that fits everyone.

Perhaps it is impossible to make everyone perfectly happy because humans tend to ask for things that contradict each other. There has been a long thread of history of people fighting for freedom while also striving to put themselves under order and regulation. People also want to be treated equally, but they also want differences between each person to be recognized and respected. Smart home is not exempt from this contradictory nature of humans since people want to feel that “they are gaining, rather than losing control” but they want home “automation.”

This is why in the developers’ point of view, they need to be extra careful when making inferences, which is what Machine Learning does: make predictions based on patters found in data collected.

We need balance between automation and manual control. This is a question very relevant to UPOD: how much do we leave for the machine to learn and execute on its own, and how much of “manual” user-programming do we want?