Anything Internet Device:

A universal interoperable open source anything internet device

The next big thing after the explosion of the Internet will be a similar revolution in getting everything else, not just computers, connected together.

The goal of the Anything Internet Device (or ``anything interface device'') has been to create a ``transmogrifiable'' network node at the convergence of wireless communications, multimedia computing, and networking.

The same low power wireless multimedia systems that made possible the invention of the wearable computer (as documented in the 35mm motion picture film ``Cyberman'' with excerpts in may also find uses in ubiquitous pervasive devices. For example, the small devices we've developed for being built into eyeglasses and wristwatches ( can also be installed inside thermostats, automobiles, handwash faucets ( and many other everyday things. These small computers are not merely special purpose hardware, but, rather, they are complete fully featured enterprise servers. Our wristwatches, briefcases, eyeglasses, and the handwash faucets in our experimental lab each have the same compute power and connectivity as an enterprise server typically used as the main computer in a large business. Thus the capability of my wristwatch far exceeds that of a standard desktop computer that runs a toy ``operating system''. Also, in terms of reliability, these devices far exceed what can be found in typical desktop computers. What makes these devices of particular interest to the arts and scientific community, and to students, and to the world as a whole, is that I have a wristwatch, a briefcase, eyeglasses, a T-shirt, a chair, and a handwash faucet that all run GNU Linux, and are all fully programmable and reconfigurable using open source development tools. They all embody the same layers of abstraction of a full operating system.

In furthering this new vision, we plan to continue using open source tools such as the universal CAD package: for connectivity-based IC layout, with VHDL I/O. This element of universality and interoperability in both the CAD tools used to develop the devices, as well as the operating systems that run on the devices, will enable the world to wrap its collective intelligence around all of the underlying concepts and applications inherent in these devices. In the same way that the World Wide Web rapidly took hold where many proprietary hypertext systems failed, our universal ``anything internet device'' is spreading quickly because of its strong base of freesource content, and its absence of restrictive nondisclosure agreements.

The ``anything internet device'' is not intended to replace proprietary IP cores, but, instead, is a device intended to capture the imagination of artists and scientists worldwide.

The next generation of the device will embody Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs), and custom circuitboard layout. It will be designed in a long slender package, less than an inch wide, and less than three inches long, so that it can be incorporated into the temple side piece of eyeglass frames, or into other devices such as the spout of a handwash faucet, or a cellular telephone handset. The device will be waterproof yet connected to the outside world by way of its W7 (SwimSync) bus. It will also be programmable by, and interoperable with any other W7 compatible device.