Mr. Sai Yamanoor with Linde talks about Scaling Your IoT Strategy

In this week's Industrial Talk Podcast and in conjunction with The Industrial IoT World, we're talking to Sai Yamanoor, IoT Applications Engineer at Linde about “How to effectively scale your IoT strategy”. Get the answers to your “IoT Strategy” questions along with Sai's unique insight on the “How” on this Industrial Talk interview!

Also….. Take ownership of the new normal at Industrial IoT World Virtual 2020 to ensure you don't get left behind. Join industry-wide discussions addressing core IIoT challenges from monetizing and securing data to updating legacy infrastructure and outdated business models. This year's speakers include leaders from Boeing, Johnson & Johnson, Michelin, ExxonMobil, Nestle and more sharing their insights on Industry 4.0, Privacy & Security, IT/OT Integration, Edge Computing and Protective Maintenance/AI. Find out more about this wonderful event by clicking here: START YOUR IIoT JOURNEY HERE!

You can find out more about Sai and the wonderful team at Linde by the links below. Finally, get your exclusive free access to the Industrial Academy and a series on “Why You Need To Podcast” for Greater Success in 2020. All links designed for keeping you current in this rapidly changing Industrial Market. Learn! Grow! Enjoy!


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iot, product, devices, scale, talk, conversations, people, industrial, design, business, industry, world, cellular, understand, obsolescence, companies, develop, sigh, industrial iot, lindy


Welcome to the industrial talk podcast with Scott MacKenzie. Scott is a passionate industry professional dedicated to transferring cutting edge industry focused innovations and trends while highlighting the men and women who keep the world moving. So put on your hard hat, grab your work boots, and let's go. Alright, let's get cracking. Thank you very much for joining the industrial talk podcast. I'm telling you, I'm honored that you have said, Yeah, yeah, I want to be a part of this podcast. Yeah, I want to be a part of this platform. Because you know why you're an industry hero to me. You're an industry hero that is not just changing lives around the world. You're changing my life. You are, but you're changing communities. And that's why you are bold, you are brave, and you dare greatly and your innovation is just second to none. That's why you're an industry hero. Thank you. Thank you for what you do. That's why the industrial talk podcast is here. It's a celebration. celebration. All right. Let's talk about the hot seat. Hot Seat on this interview is a gentleman by the name of psi. And inside forgive me if I mispronounce your last name, Yama nor, let's say it's why am a NO our fabulous stat card out there on LinkedIn. And of course, you can imagine he's the only site out there with that last name. And he's with Lindy and we're going to be talking about 10 years.


IoT, you have to talk IoT, this is coming from the perspective of you got to design it, you got to solve problems, you got to be able to deliver solutions that are meeting the markets need. sigh he's a designer this stuff. So let's get cracking.


Yeah, he is.


Yeah, I know. I've talked about it. I have I have I have half. But the reality is, is that it's here to stay. Now side brings a lot of dog guns street cred. And it's it's important. It is just it is. And I want to make sure that you understand it put this on your calendar. Now. It's happening today. And but it's, it's it's it. He's speaking at a conference. Let's check it up. Let me pull it up on my fabulous computer here. And it is the industrial IoT World Conference. I get confused, too. This one is industrial IoT world. Okay. And it is December 1 today, through the third. And it's talking about adapt and win. What do we need to adapt? Holy? Nike sees IoT now for lasting digital transformation? That's pretty positive. Why wouldn't I want to do that? Why would you want to do that? So speaking at this particular event, again, get it on your calendar, this is December 4. Today, Google third, still have time, do not lollygag. Get out there. And I'll have that link out there. It's all good. Look at all these wonderful speakers. I'm impressed. Yeah, I'm I'm out on the website. You You can't come on. Gotta register. Alright, before we get in the interview, but I want to just be able to chit chat briefly about your 2021 plan? How are you going to sell in this market? How are you going to not just survive, which we have to you have to we depend on you. But how do you survive, rebuild and prosper in this particular world? I have ideas. I have, you know, insights, but you need to start thinking about it. Now. How do you be able to do that in a world that is still very fuzzy, very foggy out there, about how do we conduct business, you're not pressing the flesh, you're not going out there? You know, hey, let me buy a drink. And let's talk business. Everything still is for the foreseeable future. little chaotic, little uncertain. So I, I'm challenged with you with that you got to start thinking through it. I have some ideas. I have some solutions. But for the first for the most part, you got to start thinking through that. The other thing, and I'm going to be doing a live on this one. But the other thing is going to be Hey, what do you think of webinars? Are you tired? Are you a little fatigued? Maybe I should come up with a word that talks a little bit about web fatigue. Maybe that's it? I don't know. But it's I know that I'm, I'm fatigued. And it's not as if I don't want to consume the content. I don't it's not that I don't want to learn more. It's it's the fact that


is the message getting out. Is it being consumed? Is it or is it just becoming just noise. And unfortunately, unfortunately, from my perspective, is becoming noise. I get notifications all the time and


It's all good. Don't get me wrong. It's not. It's not meant to be a, you know, a wet blanket or, you know, slap across the face. It's just what do we do? Where we go with it, we still have to communicate, we still have to figure out the solution of being able to for people to listen to you, it to consume it, and to be able to have action, right? I'm just throwing that out there. I'm going to be doing a live because I can


because it's fun. And because I could do it. Anyway. That's I'm going to be doing that. And I think I have some ideas. I'm going to pose some uncomfortable, uncomfortable positions here and there. But I think it got to have this conversation. All right. Under the interview, sigh Yama, Nur.


Sorry, sorry, if I mispronounced I think I got it. Why am N o r are go out to a stat card. He's got a website too. And you'll hear it in the interview. He's got a website that is solely dedicated to him just sort of playing around and making IoT devices. How about that for hobby? I betcha. I not many people have that type of hobby. In fact, he's probably one of just a handful of people that say, My hobby is to build IoT devices.


Outside of my outside of my job, I just build IoT devices, because it's fun. That's pretty cool, huh? All right. Let's get going. Thank you again, sigh enjoy this particular interview. wonderful guy. great insights. Enjoy the Simon.


side. Welcome to the industrial talk podcast. And it's an absolute honor. I'm looking forward to this conversation and listeners. He's got mad skills out there on his LinkedIn stat card. So I want to make sure you write those down listeners. His name is Sai. Last Name spelled pencil and paper time, why am a n double o r? Do not Do not miss out in connecting with this gent because he's going to be stuck talking a lot about AI IoT, however, we're talking a little bit about how we're going to scale this IoT. What goes into it? all of that good stuff. sigh welcome. How are you doing today? Hi, good morning. Thanks for having me on. The pleasures all on this side of the well, the Logitech camera. Yeah, whatever this thing, give us a little 411 little background on who Psy is for the listeners. Sure. So I am a senior IoT Applications Engineer for lendy in Buffalo, New York. In case you have not heard of Lindy Lindy is an industrial gases manufacturer, you probably have used lindis products in your life. If you have ever purchased a carbonated beverage at a fast food restaurant, or a party balloon. My role is, you know, in IoT hardware design. Yeah. See, it's interesting that I've always been fascinated by industrial gas companies. It things just wouldn't happen if we didn't have companies like Lindy producing industrial gas, not just carbon, just, I mean, everything in between. and then some, you know, you've probably seen some of their trucks rolling around on the streets. They're doing big, they're fantastic company, and they're making our lives better in a big gun way. All right. So here's here's sort of the direction we're gonna be heading. Now, listeners, we've talked about IoT. Yes, we've talked about industry for Dotto, we've talked about double IoT. How about that? We've talked about edge, we've talked about AI, we've talked about machine learning, we've talked about cloud, we talked about everything, that stuff that is under the blanket of industrial for Dotto, just, there's something probably up there even higher, however, doesn't happen. Without individuals like side being able to sort of hear what's happening in the market and hear what the companies have to say, designing the the innovation, designing the technology to serve their needs, or solve their problems. So we're going to be talking a little bit about that. And because Syed brings, he's got a website out there. I just want to make sure you guys understand and I'll post this out on industrial talk Comm. But he is so geeked out about this IoT stuff. He has an actual site that he just plays around with this stuff. How about that? Now, you know, that guy's got street? street cred, baby. So let's let's talk about I've got my business hat on their side. And I'm interested in to begin my digital journey.


How do you have a conversation with me? What am I trying to accomplish? Do you have any ideas?


Um, first of all, I would try to understand what exactly is it that you want and as an IoT


In here, I try to be your advocate, you know, like, you know, like, if it's possible to immediately solve your problem, like, you know, is using an off the shelf product, that's the way to go. I would like to understand, you know, what I like, you know, how are you going to use this device, you know, up, like I, you know, how is this product going to help you, that is the first thing I would like to, you know, understand as an IoT engineer. Because the solution might be like, right, within your realm of possibilities, like, you know, you could probably just use something that's immediately available out there in the market, that could solve your problem. Like, my role comes in only if there is nothing else available out there that could be customized to suit your needs. Because, you know, today, we you have hundreds of products out there that could possibly do what you want. But if there is some something very specific that you would like to be accomplished, that's where I would come in. See, it's interesting, because I know the industry as a whole is trying to create some sort of standardization like, Okay, we got this device, and it does this, it reads this vibration, it reports this stuff, it's got 5g, whatever it might be. And then we start talking about the cybersecurity component with these devices and potential penetration issues, all of that.


What given us an example of something that is so I mean, a lot of these companies are producing these devices. Give us an example of something that's truly unique.


A unique IoT product give me Yeah, um, I would say,


Ah, that's a good question.


So funny, because when we start talking about this,


I mean, like I said, there are tons of companies out there, done. They're developing these devices. But they're, they're trying to develop an in such a way that is sort of mass producing the capabilities so that the market says, Yeah, I'll buy one of those. And I know, I'll buy five, no, I'll buy 500 of those things. And I'll stick them out on my, like, what's what's an example of some some unique IoT situation within the let's say, the, the industrial air market? Okay, um, since I am a hardware design engineer, I will talk about it from the hardware perspective. Again, I mentioned the company's name, though, is that, absolutely. Oh, sure. So better, you might have heard of Digi, that's, you know, that makes a lot of, like ZigBee


related products. So dejes, recently came up with what's called the X v3 line of products. I like Personally, I'm a big fan of those big, here's why. So they designed a cellular module and a ZigBee module. And they designed it in a way such that you could write your code for the set, let's say the cellular module. And you could use it as just by changing a single line of code for the ZigBee line of products. So that is the most likely EAC product that I've recently come across. And then I was working on this, I thought this is going to take a lot of effort to migrate a product that uses cellular technology to the and move it to, you know, say ZigBee wireless. Yeah, but I was surprised by how you could, you know, just do it as this all you had to do was change, like, you know, make the new hardware and, you know, conduct the migration, it was that easy. That, you know, like, that's the best, you know, example. That's interesting, because you're talking about, let's say legacy devices that been in the facility forever, whatever it might be, and to be able to convert those, those legacy devices to a wireless platform. Is that what you're saying? Is that what


Digi does? Yes. And so a G's products that are so that uses their legacy? Digi ZigBee modules. So the so they have designed it in a way that not only is it backwards compatible, so let's say you deployed a ZigBee module, like 10 years ago, you could slap this cellular module in and not only that, you could also migrate it to your you know, future ZigBee line of products. And on top of that, you don't need an like, you know, a firmware program.


To do this, so someone with some basic knowledge of Python programming could actually develop a product using this. That's because they actually develop their own flavor of Python programming called like, you know, so there is an open source project called micro Python. So they adopted the micro Python for their family of products. So it makes it easier for you. So if you have some basic nail knowledge of Python programming, you could develop your own product because it's already FCC certified. So it just makes your life so easy. She and we're talking about that, that sort of ultimate flexibility, and which then in law, it goes in line with our next topic that I would like to be able to do this. Okay, so


we got it. A lot of smart people like yourself, are creating a lot of capabilities and flexibilities within and not really sort of shoehorning you know, the solutions into sort of, you got to do it this way, whether you like it or not type of mindset. So, and that that to me, bodes well from from an innovation point of view. And and it's important, right? Not every company is the same, and so on and so forth. So many of my conversations occur, happen around


where do I start, which we talked about, where do I start from an IoT perspective? Can I do it incrementally, right, and people saying, Yeah, you can do it incrementally. Let's get some quick wins. Let's, let's run it. Let's check it. Let's do. And I think that that's a fabulous approach. Now, I say, Alright, I'm ready to scale.


What do we do? How do we begin that process of scaling? I've already proved it, like it, I'm ready to scale it. How do we do that? Well, I can talk from my personal experiences of scaling such devices, the first thing to do would be to actually understand, like, you know, what is your target cost? You know, it's important to understand that, so, so that when you're scaling, you need to keep that in mind. And also, you have to keep your recurring overhead costs in mind as well. This is important, because you need to understand who's going to pay for it, is your customer going to pay for the overhead cost? Are you giving this product to your customer for free? Or is this a premium based plan, so it's important to understand your business, you know, like, you know, your, you need to have a business case, and you need to understand this, before you decide to scale your product, you know, that actually helps you under so if you are someone that you know, if you're not going to have a lot of volume, like, you know, your target cost is going to be such and such, but if you expect to have like 100,000 devices, which is highly unlikely, you know,


so, you know, if you're going to have, like, you know, in the in such cases, you have the liberty of making 1000 at a time, because


then you can go talk to your vendor, or whoever is manufacturing this device for you, like, you know, and say, hey, my projected volume is this, and I'm going to buy 500 at a time, and my target cost is this, can you do this, you know, so, you know, like, yeah, your capabilities and like, you know, what you can do and cannot don't help you shop for people, like, you know, sometimes you might not have that option. And from there, you kind of have to make sure that you have all your agreements in place. Like, you know, the person that you're buying it from has an understanding your business, you know, has an understanding of like, you know, this is the person that they have to go to, to buy it. You have to keep the product lifecycle management in place, like, you know, if there is any technical debt around, like, you know, if there was any issue that wasn't resolved, it needs to be resolved before you start scaling, because we don't want a ticking time bomb. That that's, you know, that's mine deployed out. Yeah, that nobody wants that. Nobody wants to hear that in a sentence, either. I know


that she this is interesting, because many of the conversations I've had, the device has already been manufactured. It's like it's already out there. We got it in the warehouse, and it's been tested. It's right over there. And I'm, I've never, and I know it's a manufactured product, right? I know it is somebody who's going to have there's a lot of work that goes into just creating that device. And then when you start talking about, Hey, I'm ready to scale, right, I'm ready to scale, then you got to have to have that manufacturing compensation of the individual or the companies that that manufacture that product. That's a that's an interesting point. And it could be a pinch point. If you don't have


the design


Do what you're trying to deliver. clearly understood, it could be a pinch. Yeah, I have been in situations where the proof of concept, or rather, the pilot actually went really well. But when it came to scaling, there were there were actual disagreements in like, you know, the pricing. And like, that was a pain point. And like, even like, the payment terms, was a pain point, like, you know, how are we like, you know, the payment mechanism, like, you know, sometimes some people want like a purchase order, and some people want to pay with credit cards. And they don't want like, you know, nobody wants to be bound by an agreement where, you know, you have to have a minimum business guarantee, or something like that, right. So that, like, we had to abandon things abandon, like a line of thought that we had, like, this is how we are going to scale it. Because we figured out, like, you know, like, well into the product development phase that, okay, this is not going to work, we need to take a new path. Now, you don't want to be bad. You don't want to be there. You want to be able to ferret all that out at the beginning, right? Yeah. Yeah, stop fraud. Right. And, you know, it's more just paperwork and conversations and chirping, you're not having to sit there and put things into action. You don't want to do it that way. Yeah, yeah. And not only that, you will make everyone unhappy, as well.


That was subtle side.


No, 100% of everybody will be unhappy. Nobody. In those type of conversations, say,


I like the miscommunication. I like that misunderstanding. It makes us better and stronger. Nobody. Nobody says that.


is wild scaling. I would like to add that while scaling, you had to keep technology obsolescence in mind as well. Wow. Yeah, I would like to provide a little example. So 3g networks are sunsetting, I believe in 2020. So if you're deploying a product that uses 3g modules, you kind of have to make sure that you have a drop in replacement for your customer. And you are not only that, you have to make sure that you have an arrangement with whoever is providing the product, that there's a drop in replacements, cars, or you know, like, for example, you could probably replace it with a discount, you know, so you need to make sure, yeah, you need to plan for product obsolescence.


You know, see, I never thought of that either, but you're absolutely correct. And with technology as a whole, just FYI, technology as a whole tends to be pretty fast, and tends to change pretty quickly. And so that's, that is a very important product, technical obsolescence. I think that's interesting. Now, can you deploy from a scaling perspective, let's say I'm a business and I,


I can pull these off the shelf, like, like, just like that, okay, 50 of those are going to be just off the shelf, then I've got 25 that are sort of unique to my business, and I pull that in, have you seen sort of a development of an IoT scaling solution that includes sort of a portfolio of just?


Or do you try to keep it the same.


Um, I have done a mix of both. So the very first product that I developed for Lindy, had to be developed within a scale of six months. So what I did was I got something off the shelf, I integrated it, and we scaled it. But like, you know, we didn't exactly like you know, do it in six months, but it took a little bit longer. But we did it where we used an off the shelf product. And like, you know, we customized it a little bit and scale that. But the challenge with that, is that like you kind of are tied into it. So what I'm like what I have learned over time, is that platform ization of these things are important.


What would that say? What's important platform ization of the platform ization another great word that's never really I don't even know how to spell platform ization.


Black ization.


Let me give an example like the Digi products, the example that I gave, right, that would be a classic example. Let's say that you're designing sensors. And like, let's say you're using the ZigBee wireless products. Yes. Um, so and so you you probably have set up an infrastructure to accommodate the sensors out in the field. Now when you're going to design a product that's somewhat similar in application, but you know, you're going to use


But you need cellular technology. Yep. So you can actually accomplish that by like, just using their wireless their cellular module in your design. And so that that's sort of adjacent in terms of like the technology that's available. So what happens is that your infrastructure can accommodate any type of product that's somewhat similar, this just makes your life easy, because then future, let's say you're jumping on to a different application, like you could meet, you know, down up something that's similar in combination, that just that that just accelerates your product, timeline development timeline over time, so you don't need to actually develop something from scratch again, and again, but you know, you have this infrastructure, you're just adding something new, this can go as far as, like, you know, you could probably get something off the shelf, and design it in a way such that it, you know, the data pipeline comes in into your existing infrastructure. See, here's, here's a thought that comes to mind based off of that, let's say I'm, once again, I've got my business hat on, I'm looking at a portfolio, I'm trying to, you know, I'm accelerating my digital journey, whatever that looks like. And


I have history where these devices have to be either updated or upgraded, or whatever. And if, and this is my thought that would come to mind, if I have a sort of a portfolio out there. I want that process because I know what's going to happen, I want that process to be simplified. But if I have these all these little disconnected type of devices that are sort of talking to each other, that hole up dating up grading, activities,




And, you know, so what we do in the development process, like when we get started, right, like, there are two things we consider. One is backwards compatibility, if I'm going to update something, in terms of hardware, I'm going to make sure that it is backwards compatible with the previous generation of devices. Because here is why so let's say you have a millions of assets, like you know, you, you don't want a fleet that's of one type and the fleet that's of other type. Yeah. Especially if you're designing something for a very specific customer, it becomes, you know, like, unmanageable, when you're trying to like, you know, deliver something very specific. So, you know, you cannot, you cannot do that. So what we try to do is we try to maintain backwards compatibility. And we also try to maintain the possibility of doing future upgrades easier.


Last, yeah, so that you could do a drop in replacement, you know, you would want that, like, otherwise life is going to be monumentally difficult. See, and that, and I think that many of the conversations I've had is that they're looking for many businesses, many industries, many manufacturers are looking for a silver bullet. And many individuals have talked about, I love this digital journey, I think that there's going to be great, and I think it's going to make my business more resilient, going forward. all wonderful topics. Absolutely true.


But they don't realize how challenging it can be a lot of thought processes that are that have to happen and conversations that have to happen to make that journey a little less painful. Because nobody doubts, nobody doubts, the benefits of this. Nobody. I mean, some people say now may financially, sort of you spoke on the financial, what's the cause? Maybe doesn't align that way. But eventually, people like you and others, you'll continue to drive those device costs down. And which is an interesting conversation to have is like, maybe today, these these assets over here. We can't afford it. It doesn't work. Right. But maybe two years from now revisited. Because maybe the market has changed their cost structure No. Have you seen then I, when I found it hard to convince people that, you know, certain something is not going to pan out? My approach has always been to actually, like put something in their hands, you know, like, you know, this could be a field trial, or this could be a pilot run, right? Like, you know, and show the deployment and see, you know, this is what we could accomplish, and this would this is what it would cost and this is what it would take why


I try to do is when it comes to, like, you know, target costs I, like, you know, I try to, you know, understand what my customer has in mind. And, you know, I set that as a target. And like when I'm on the, you know, when I'm on the design board, I try to, like, you know, assume that it's going to cost twice as much. And it's going to take three times, you know, sorry, yeah, twice as long, right. So that, you know, and work my way backwards and see what could be paid and what cannot be quick, you know, that would help me like, you know, that would make me estimate, like, is this going to be possible? Are we going to be able to do this within this time or within this cost? Like that? You know, I think that that frame of having that frame of reference can help you determine the feasibility of the project itself. And again, here's the deal, you understand, but unless you have a couple of wins in your belt, some, you know, victories and said, we just did it, this proof of concept, it works. We did it see soup to nuts, beginning to end all of that stuff, and then actually realized some sort of return on it. Yeah. See the value the benefits that we achieve from this particular project? is x. You know, being with us. I want to see it, you know, that's conversations going to happen. It's hard without having that real information and data. That's for doggone Sure. Oh, yeah. Yeah. So we're gonna have to wrap it up. So already beyond it's already done. You. you've nailed it. Are you active out there on LinkedIn? Yes, yes. I am on LinkedIn. You can find me on LinkedIn as I am. Yeah, it


you can go out there. I would imagine there's not many Sai Yama, nor did I get that right. Correct. That is a, I am a note on LinkedIn. And so if that's you, and his last name is spelled YAMAN, double o r, it will be out there on the industrial talk podcast on his pot, you got to listen to this guy. You got to reach out to him. I think he's bringing some really major goal when it comes to IoT, and to that conversation, and how to calm to scale and deploy in a much grander way. So you are wonderful. Thank you. Thanks for having me. You're awesome. All right, listeners, you know what we're gonna do, we're gonna wrap it up on the other side, I'm going to have all the contact information from Scion. And then I think there's also a conference and I will wrap it up and I'll give that conference a plug too as well. So stay tuned.


Your listening to the industrial talk, Podcast Network.


All right. sigh Yama, nor All right. He's with Lindy great company. He's doing some great things, especially in this world of industry for Dotto, yeah, it's got to start someplace, it's got to start with the vision, it's got to start with the problems got to start with, how do we develop solutions in this? This world? That's where it starts. Again. He's gonna be one of the many speakers that are taking place at the sea, the IoT, the industrial IoT world event started today. two more days of it. still have time to sign up. Great guy, great event. Here's his adaptive win, got adaptive win definitely sees IoT. Now, for lasting digital transformation. Again, argument that you need to do it. Easy. I'll have that link out there. All right. Again, you're bold, you're brave, you dare greatly but I want to make sure that you understand you got to you got to hang out with people who are bold, brave and daring greatly. Your view of the world will change dramatically. You guys are great. Love you all. Thank you very much for joining the industrial talk podcast. We're gonna be back with another great interview shortly.

About the author, Scott

I am Scott MacKenzie, husband, father, and passionate industry educator. From humble beginnings as a lathing contractor and certified journeyman/lineman to an Undergraduate and Master’s Degree in Business Administration, I have applied every aspect of my education and training to lead and influence. I believe in serving and adding value wherever I am called.

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