Software

MiOS, a software platform for IoT devices: The smart person's guide

Smart devices are fractured by different protocols--MiOS wants to end that problem and help smaller OEMs compete. Here's what businesses and developers need to know about this smart-device OS.

Software development costs can be a hinderance for many small OEMs, especially those who want to create a smart middleware device. MiOS may solve that problem by offering scalable, flexible software that combines the Lua programming language and universal plug-and-play (UPnP) to bridge the proprietary gap.

If you're a hardware manufacturer trying to solve the insurmountable software problem, this operating system may be for you. From turnkey solutions to customizable bare-bones operating systems, MiOS' various options very well may have you up and running far ahead of schedule.

This primer about MiOS is a quick introduction to the connectivity platform, as well as a "living" resource that will be updated periodically as it changes to suit new IoT and smart technology.

SEE: All of TechRepublic's smart person's guides

Executive summary

  • What is MiOS? MiOS is a software platform for connecting and controlling smart devices. It's designed to be customized by OEMs and developers to suit their particular needs through combining the Lua programming language with UPnP technology to create what MiOS calls LuuP.
  • Why does MiOS matter? MiOS's tech-agnostic software allows it to be used with a wide range of hardware, which LuuP converts into UPnP. This has the potential to be a huge boon for small-scale IoT and smart device manufacturers, giving them the chance to reach a larger market.
  • Who does MiOS affect? MiOS affects anyone who has a smart device that needs a software interface. MiOS can be completely built using a bare-bones framework or purchased as a turnkey product, so developer skill isn't required to get it running.
  • How do I start using MiOS? Anyone interested in using MiOS as an OEM will have to contact MiOS—specific pricing is not available on its website. Developers interested in coding for MiOS have to contact MiOS to request a development account.

SEE: Special report: Harnessing IoT in the enterprise (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

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Image: iStock/audioundwerbung

SEE: Quick glossary: Internet of Things (Tech Pro Research)

What is MiOS?

Say your company builds a smart device—it's going to need software to interface with. Rather than build it yourself you could go with MiOS.

MiOS is "an open, scalable and interoperable software platform that's easily embedded into devices for advanced control and monitoring capabilities." It can be customized from its very foundations, all the way up to be a turnkey solution, and MiOS claims it has a feature that makes it truly unique: The ability to translate proprietary protocols into UPnP.

Essentially, MiOS claims that its operating system can communicate with major wireless ecosystems, smart home protocols, serial devices, ethernet devices, and other smart hardware. It does this with what MiOS calls LuuP.

LuuP is a combination of the Lua scripting language and UPnP. LuuP uses Lua scripts to enable communication to and from proprietary languages to UPnP—a pretty powerful capability if it works as MiOS intends.

The MiOS OS itself can be used to control smart healthcare hardware, manage multi-device conference rooms, power security systems, monitor energy expenditure, and enable property managers to keep a better eye on their investments, among other things.

If you have a smart product—particularly middleware—that needs to communicate with a whole network of IoT devices, MiOS may just be what you're looking for.

Additional resources

Why does MiOS matter?

Small-scale smart device and IoT manufacturers often have a difficult time breaking into industries controlled by a few large players, and MiOS has the potential to upend that paradigm.

SEE: Internet of Things policy (Tech Pro Research)

LuuP gives smaller companies who don't have the resources to develop their own proprietary language the ability to communicate with various devices that are otherwise outside of their scope.

MiOS's tech-agnostic design is a particular boon for those working on middleware devices, such as smart home hubs and medical device controllers, because it can serve as an interface for varied and incompatible devices. MiOS also handles all the hooks and APIs, which frees up developers' time to focus on product-specific issues instead of bridging gaps.

Additional resources

Who does MiOS affect?

Anyone building a smart device that needs a software interface is affected by MiOS, especially those on a budget who can't spend large sums on development.

MiOS can be delivered as a complete turnkey product, leaving the installation, interface, and spinning up the product to OEMs.

SEE: 15 books every programmer should read (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

MiOS can also be hosted in the cloud, which can minimize equipment costs. Combine that with its ability to interface "with any or all current control platforms in majority use today, and ... bridge any or all physical layers over IP" and you have a potential recipe for success on a tight budget.

Additional resources

How do I start using MiOS?

MiOS's website lacks details on pricing and availability, which may well be because of its high level of customizability. Getting a detailed idea of what using MiOS would mean for your organization will require reaching out to the company directly.

Developers interested in contributing to MiOS need to contact the company, but can also learn about its capabilities in MiOS's developer section.

Additional resources

About Brandon Vigliarolo

Brandon writes about apps and software for TechRepublic. He's an award-winning feature writer who previously worked as an IT professional and served as an MP in the US Army.

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