As technology advancements take place in healthcare, cloud computing is not the solution that it was once expected by the enterprise and service providers. We have gained a realistic expectation of the system and some real concerns with migrating to the cloud. The cloud system is considered both amorphous and pervasive, and the prevalence of the Internet of Things (IoT) has forced it to change. The clear trend that has evolved from this evolution is Fog Computing, which has surpassed the standard cloud solutions that provide services and storage remotely. Additionally, Fog Computing addresses both cross-platform and operational issues.
What exactly is Fog Computing?
Fog Computing is also referred to as fog networking. The Cisco System was the first to introduce the term fog computing. It was a new model established to ease wireless data transfers to various devices in the IoT network paradigm. In a nutshell, fog computing is a decentralized infrastructure where computing resources and the application services are easily distributed in the most efficient and logical place. The distribution can happen at any point along the continuum—from the data source to the cloud. The main goal behind the development of fog computing is to improve efficiency and reduce the amount of data needed in the cloud to undergo data processing, storage, and analysis. As time goes by, it is also used for compliance and security reasons.
Cisco defined Fog Computing as a paradigm that can extend cloud computing and the services to the edge of the network. The main distinguishing characteristics of Fog Computing is its proximity to the end user, the dense geographical distribution, and its support for mobility. Fog computing can support IoE, referred to as Internet of Everything, an application that demands real-time or predictable latency. As fog computing has a wide geographical distribution, the paradigm is well positioned to accommodate real-time large data and also perform real-time analytics.
Why Fog Computing?
Fog Computing can provide advantages to a number of industries; this is from entertainment, advertising, computing, and others. It is well positioned for distributed data collection points and data analytics. Various end services, such as the access point and set up boxes, are easily hosted using Fog Computing. The system can reduce latency and improve on QoS. Fog Computing has positioned the information near the user at the network edge.
Fog Computing use cases
Fog Computing can offer real-time intelligence about the condition and the events at the stations, trackside, and trains. Thus, this helps in the improvement of the passenger’s safety. It can prevent any cyber security events on various critical operations at the station. The system can alert drivers of any treacherous conditions that lay ahead. Furthermore, the system can increase the rider’s satisfaction as the system provides an excellent Wi-Fi connection in all the rail cars.
Governance or regulatory requirements
There has been an increase in security issues, thus, resulting in better management in forcing the organization to use a private cloud-like Fog Computing in their operations. In certain countries, they require that application data about people in a particular location to remain within the country. Moreover, Fog Computing improves the organization’s security as the data is encoded as it moves towards the network edge.
In most computing organizations, they are unable to get the infrastructure or needed hardware for a particular application, this is where Fog Computing can help. Other than providing specialty hardware, it also offers self-service IT. Self-service IT is one where the IT operations have been automated. Accordingly, it can offer the technically unsophisticated end users a simple option of push-button deployment without the involvement of the operation staff.
Fog Computing offers the construction industry increased agility; it can assist in quickly changing the production lines and introducing new products. It can also reduce downtime within the warehouse by performing predictive maintenance in the machines. Fog computing is able to secure data and machines by performing data analysis that can detect any signs of network attack that could threaten the plant safety and personnel. Finally, the system does a continuous check to confirm that the safety systems are intact.
Fog computing can restore power quickly from the data gathered from the substation, power plant and grid, which can quickly identify the problem and alert the system operator. The system is also able to check any potential physical security breaches and detect any cyber security breaches that may arise. It is achieved by an automated response that helps in the prevention of infections that could jeopardize the safety of the organization.
With the emerging paradigms, Fog computing seems to be performing much better than cloud computing. However, it is important to note that it cannot completely replace cloud computing, which is still preferred in companies that deal in batch processing jobs, which is very common in healthcare. Fog and cloud computing will always complement each other while maintaining unique characteristics.
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