New York City College of Technology

Robotics & Intelligent Systems Laboratory


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CET 4925 Internet of Things (IoT)

Instructor: Dr. Li

Email: xhli@citytech.cuny.edu

Office Hours: Tue 3~6PM, Thur 1:30~2:30PM (Spring 2018)


Welcome to CET4925 Internet of Things! A fasinating and rapidly booming technology field, the Internet of Things (IoT), is revealing here. This webpage can simply be reached by Googling "City Tech IoT Dr. Li" or "City Tech CET 4925 Dr. Li".


Course Description (from College Catalog):

Introduction to the architecture of Internet of Things (IoT) and the basics of key technologies for developing an IoT system, including physical computing,
communication, connectivity and IoT cloud. A variety of IoT implementations and applications are introduced. Students use some of the technologies with experimental hardware platforms to implement a prototype IoT system.


Grading Policy:
Attendance 10%
Midterm Project Proposal 15%
Final Project Report 15% 
Final Project & Extra Credits 35%

                      A: 93~100         A-: 90~92.99     B+: 87~89.99     B: 83~86.99
                      B-: 80~82.99     C+: 77~79.99    C: 70~76.99       D: 60~69.99 


Course Documents:

  Course Syllabus: Detailed information about the course policies, including pre-requisitives, textbook, grading policy, and other course policies.

  Labs & Lab Reports Requirements: Detailed requirements on lab experiments and lab reports (including report's content and format).

  Additional Guide on How to Write Technical Report: A very good guide written by IET (Institute of Engineering & Technology, the largest international non-for-profit engineering professional organization dated back to 1871).  

Course Project Documents:

  Course Project General Requirements:  General description and requirements on course project.

  Parts List for Course Project: A reference part list for your project (Reminder: This list is not complete).

  Websites to Order Parts: Some common websites from which you can order parts.

  Midterm Project Proposal Requirements: Detailed requirements on the project proposal, including its content and format.            Additional requirement on project proposal: A project management profile (a Gantt chart for your project timeline and task division) MUST be included in the proposal. You can use Microsoft Project or an open-source software named as "ProjectLibre" to creat such a chart. See items about "ProjectLibre" in the blow for details.    

  Final Project Report Requirements: Detailed requirements on the final project report, including its content and format.

  A Sample "Midterm Project Proposal":   A Midterm Project Proposal written by a team in EMT2461 class in the semester of Spring 2014. Please read the instructor's comments in this sample proposal to understand what is good and what is bad.   

  "ProjectLibre":   ProjectLibre is a major open source software as the leading alternative to Microsoft Project. Download and use it to generate the project management profile (called "Gantt Chart") for your Project Proposal! Download link is here   

  Tutorial of ProjectLibre:   A simply tutorial of ProjectLibre which was used by another class in Fall 2012. Please read and follow the steps described there thorougly. You will get familiar with ProjectLibre right away! (Note: The project file and the Gantt chart created through this tutorial is in the following item.)    

Technical Documentations:

  Particle's Official Documentation:  Particle.io maintains a very good documentation. See official "Get Started", "Tutorials" and "Reference" there.

  Particle Community:  An online discussion forum on Particle's products and technologies, which is hosted by Particle. Highly suggested for asking questions and seek helps.   NEW!!

  Get Started with IBM Watson IoT Platform:  IBM's official tech documentations on IBM Watson IoT Platform.

  GitHub Repository of C++ Client Library for IBM Watson IoT Platform: GitHub's repository of IBM's official paho MQTT C++ library for connecting/managing devices, and MQTT with IBM Watson IoT Platform.  NEW!!

  Intel's official documentation on mraa C/C++ library:  Intel's MRAA library is a low Level library for communication and interfacing with I/O on a variety of boards (GPIO, PWM, I2C, SPI, UART, ...). It supports RasPi, Banana Pi, Beaglebone, and Onion Mega2,  It allows you to program in C++, Python, JavaScript or Java.

  Intel IoT Platform Architecture White Paper:  A white paper published by Intel regarding Intel IoT platform architecture. Copyright@Intel Inc.  

Startup & Entrepreneurship:

   IoT Startups and Companies in NYC Do you know that 27 IoT startups in NYC have raised total $46M by 2016?! NY's hottest IoT startups and successful companies featured by builtinnyc.com.  NEW!!

    IoT Angel List:  See what is happening out there now. In addition, you can find a job in IoT startups via this website. NEW!!

   IoT Landscape 2018: A great and comprehensive review and outlook of IoT ecosystem published by Matt Turck in FirstMark Capital (a VC in New York City). Previous landscape reports in 2016 and 2014. Copyright@Matt Turck, Demi Obayomi and FirstMark Capital.  NEW!!

Tentative Class Schedule:

      Note: Click available links (in red color) in the following table for handouts.

      Open Lab Hours: Thursday 12~2PM, V606/608






 Intro to Course, Syllabus, project videos, Course Project and course project ideas.

 Ch1. Intro and Architecture of IoT: history, applications, examples


  Project team-up; Research /brainstorm project ideas;
    Order a Photon


 Ch1. Intro and Architecture of IoT (Contd):  Architecture, ecosystems

Slides (see Blackboard)

Team-up finishes; Research/ brainstorm project ideas and decide project.  Start to order necessary parts/components


 Ch2. Physical computing platforms for IoT: MCU vs MPU; Comparison of all boards

 Lab 1.  Get started with Photon


Project approved by instructor; Decide  parts (shields, sensors,  ... ...); Speed up on parts ordering


 Ch3. Basics of OOP Programming by C++

  Ch4. I/O for IoT -- Part 1. Input 

  Lab 2: Digital and Analog Input with Photon: Sonar sensor, temperature or flex sensor

 Lab Handout (see Blackboard)

Discuss project design; Divide the jobs; Keep ordering parts


  Ch4. I/O for IoT -- Part 2. Output

Lab 3: PWM by Photon, Dimmer light, Control of DC servo motor

Lab 3:  LCD Display; or Drive a LED matrix

Lab Handout (see Blackboard)

Keep discussing project design; Keep  ordering parts


  Ch5. Inerfacing Techniques: I2C, SPI, UART

Lab 4: I2C (IMU or ATMega328/P)
Or: SPI/SD Card Reader

Lab Handout (see Blackboard) Keep discussing project design; Keep  ordering parts; Start to develop project proposal; Midterm Project Proposal to Due in 2 weeks!


  Ch6. Connectivity Technologies: From FieldBus and WSN, to today's WiFi/Celluar/ZigBee, and the emerging Thread, LoRa and Sigfox

Project Midterm Proposal to Due at the 8th week!

Keep discussing project design; Finish ordering parts;  Start to build the project: physical platform.
Midterm Proposal to Due next week!


 Ch7. IoT Cloud: Introduction and ReST

Lab 5: Intro to IBM Watson IoT Platform (Quickstart)

Handout: Get Started with IBM Watson IoT Platform

Dr. Li's example code of sending data to IBM Watson IoT Platform Quickstart


Lab Handout (see Blackboard)

Proposal to Due! See the Blackboard for exact due date.

Keep building the project


  Ch7. IoT Cloud: MQTT

Lab 6: Using MQTT to send data to IBM Watson IoT Platform & Data visualization

Handout: Visulaize Real-time Data

Link: MQTT library for Particle Photon

Dr. Li's example code for sending data for visualization on IBM Watson IoT Platform

  Lab Handout (see Blackboard)

 Keep building the project: Project physical platform is  in shape;
program and test sensors


 Ch7. IoT Cloud: Node-RED

Lab 7: Tweeting an alert message based on sensor readings from remote device

Example: Node-RED flow for generating Twiiter alert messages

Lab Handout (see Blackboard) Keep building the project: program and test actuators


 Ch8. Data Analytics and Cloud computing for IoT

Lab 8: Control remote device via Node-RED and IBM Cloud

Dr. Li's example code on Photon subscribing string commands from IBM Cloud

Example Node-RED flow of sending commands to remote devices

 Another example code: Photon subscribes JSON-formatted commands from IBM Cloud

Lab Handout (see Blackboard) integrate everything together


 Ch8. Data Analytics and Cloud computing for IoT (Contd)

Lab 9: IFTTT

Lab 10: Speech to text translation (optional)

  Lab handout (see Blackboard)


Finish integrating everything together. Bring everything to the class and work on the project next week


Project hours

Bring everything  and work on the project; test/refine the entire system


Project hours


Bring everything  and work on the project; test/refine the entire system


 Final  Project Demonstration & Presentation


 Final project demo & presentation






Projects in the Current Semester:

  Spring 2018:

    Weather Insighted Smart Sprinkler
    Smart Assistive Medicine Bottle
    IoT Intercom

Example Projects from Previous Semesters:

  Spring 2017:

    IoT Central Cooling & Heating System
    IoT Plant Watering System
    IoT Safe
    Smart Curtain


Go Mobile!

You can simply use your smartphone or tablet to scan the following 2D barcode to access this webpage on the go.

2D Barcode for EMT2461 URL


Follow me on Twitter for Course Annoucements:

 Twitter has and are being used by many leading universities as a new and proved effective tool for a better communication between instructor and students, and among the students. Through this course, I will use Twitter to promptly and smoothly send announcements, listen to your suggestion and address your concerns.

You can simply use your smartphone to scan the following 2D barcode to access my twitter. Follow me on twitter for any future annoucements, news and discussions regarding our class.

Prof. X Li's Twitter



    Job Opening -- Hardware Engineer:  Smallhold, a Brooklyn-based IoT agriculture technology company that builds climate-controlled Minifarms for restaurants and retailers, is hiring a hardware engineer. See the official website for detailed description and how to apply:  https://www.smallhold.com/hardware-engineer  NEW!! 

    Seminar on "Signal Processing and Predictive Analytics in IoT":  A talk featuring Stuart Feffer (founder of Realityai) in Build Grand Central (335 Madison Ave, Manhattan) on Tuesday, March 27, 2018 6~8PM. See the talk abstract and event agenda at:  https://www.meetup.com/IoT-NY/events/248205840/ 

    Summer Intern Opportunities: NEW!!  Brooklyn Navy Yard had direct collaboration with our College and hired many of our City Tech students in the past as summer interns. The internship program in Brooklyn Navy Yard is open to accept applications until April 2. A variety of intern positions are offered by the companies inside Brooklyn Navy Yard. See flyer here. Check details by clicking the link:  https://brooklynnavyyard.org/employment/summer-internship/ 

    Aging Innovation Challenge from the New York State Department of Health:  NEW!!  The NY State Department of Health is calling on students to propose innovations that can support the elderly with an activity of daily living, such as eating or bathing.  There are $50,000 in prizes up for grabs and the deadline for proposals is April 30th, 2018. See the official page https://www.herox.com/aginginnovationNY  for more details on how to join the competition and timeline.

    The Second Frontier Tech: Robotics, Drones, IoT & More on March 14, 2018It will feature a VC investor,  IOTAS (a IoT smart appartment), Launcher (delivering small satellites to orbit), and Spark/Particle. Super cool opportunity to know what is going on in the outside world and create some social networks. See event details on https://www.meetup.com/Hardwired-NYC/events/248349120/

    Frontier Tech: Robotics, Drones, IoT & More on Feb. 20, 2018Organized by FirstMark (a VC in Chelsea). It will feature an investor from Google Ventures, a IoT cloud plaform, and an IoT indoor farms companies. See details on https://www.meetup.com/Hardwired-NYC/events/247295430/

Past Announcements:

    Seminar of "Big Data Analytics and its Applicaitons in Business":  The Computer Engineering & Robotics Technology Seminar Series feature "Big Data Analytics and its Applications in Business" by Dr. Shim from College of Staten Island/CUNY on May 4, 2017 (Thur), during 12:45~1:45PM, in room V614. A great opportunity to learn the latest technologies and developments on big data and data analytics.

    NJ Tech Council IoT Conference 2017 on April 26, 2017:  The annual NJ Tech Council IoT Conference 2017 will feature AWS IoT cloud and AT&T foundry, Smart City, smart transportation, many IoT projects demo and networking reception. It will be hold at Steven Insititution of Technology, Hoboken, NJ, on April 26, 2017. If interested, please contact Dr. Li for free-registration promotion code by April 12. See the link here for detailed conference agenda.

Archived version of this webpage:  Click the Link here.

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Created in December 2016; Last Update in August 2018