Technology is evolving at a rapid pace. Twenty years ago, the internet began to play a major role in our life. Fast forward a few years and hardware devices such as iPhones began to take society by storm. Today, it is blockchain technology that is seeking to transform current business structure, communication, and internal processes and more importantly — the nature of money. Big name companies such as IBM, Walmart, Toyota and more are beginning to utilize blockchain technology. With artificial intelligence (AI), the internet of things (IoT), robotics and cryptocurrency converging, we’re seeing automation and autonomous systems playing an ever-increasing role in industry. Industries across the board are seeing dramatic increases in efficiency, product tracing, and security. We are entering what I call the Age of Autonomy and to show you how, let me break down three exciting use cases that blockchain technology is providing.
What is Blockchain?
Blockchain is a decentralized ledger. It is a distributed system using computer nodes that are peer-to-peer (P2P), used for verifying transactions in a secure and tamperproof way.
Agriculture: Smart Farming with Autonomous Robots
The Netherlands is the second largest food exporter in the world when measured by value. They ran a project (case study here) that aimed at identifying and destroying problematic potato plants in sugar beet fields. To do this they used proof of concept in a 5G field using IoT robotics, AI, and 5G on a smart edge platform. Let me describe to you exactly how this experiment was conducted.
To start, Potatoes can cause problems for other crops, such as sugar beets, as they grow faster, absorb more nutrients, attract soil-borne diseases and introduce pests. To combat this, a Robotti robot was sent out into the field. It would capture images of the field and send it to the cloud edge. The cloud edge carries a deep learning algorithm where it is able to process the images and identify whether it is a sugar beet plant or a potato plant. Once the images are processed a response is sent to the robot telling it to spray the plant or not. The full communication cycle takes 250 milliseconds. In other words, it is extremely fast at identification and decision making. By the end of the project 95% of the potato…