My first book – Social Machines (Wiley & Sons) goes on sale today. It’s an exciting moment – one that’s been in the works for nearly a year. Writing a book is probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. But now that it’s out it feels like it wasn’t so bad. Which must mean I need to start my second one!
The book focuses squarely on product design for the Internet of Things — or if you’re Cisco, the “Internet of Everything” or GE, the “Industrial Internet”. Whatever the terminology, it means, in essence, anything connected to the Internet that’s not a laptop, tablet or smartphone. There has been a rapidly expanding collection of examples – from the Nike+ fitness system, to the Nest connected thermostat, to the Audi Connect automobile. If you are the designer/developer of virtually any product today, chances are good you have thought about what would happen if you connected it to a network. And if you haven’t, you almost certainly will in the coming year. At my company Bug Labs, we are having our busiest year ever working with companies of all sizes helping innovate in these exploding new markets.
Social Machines was written explicitly for answering the key questions that arise when you take previously isolated objects and connect them to the Internet. For example, it may surprise you to discover that when you develop a connected/social device you suddenly have two types of users to engage and satisfy – customers and developers. These are completely different experiences. What are the major design considerations when you are designing a social product? And why is that valuable at all? Connecting your product to the Internet opens up a world of innovative possibilities. Social Machines is your guide.
If you are interested in taking a peak you can download the introductory chapter for free from here. If you’d like to purchase the book, please use one of these resellers – Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million or for bulk purchases, 800CEOread. I’d love to hear your thoughts on it. Feel free to email me at peter (a) buglabs.net.