The Silk open-source platform brings a new age of IoT through meaningful experiences

Welcome to the Silk Labs blog! This is where you can find all the latest news regarding our team and the development of the Silk platform. I’m Andreas Gal, Silk Labs’ founder and CEO.

We are unveiling today our first step towards building an intelligent connected future: our open-source Silk platform.

Silk is a powerful software platform built from the same technologies that power the Web. Instead of writing low-level firmware code, Silk developers have full access to the power and extensibility of JavaScript, Node.js and the ecosystem. With Silk, developing, evolving, and updating software for connected devices is more similar to the way modern Web services are developed than traditional firmware development for hardware devices.

We founded Silk Labs because we want to live in a world where the devices around us are intelligent, understand us, and respond to our needs; we created Silk to build a new generation of intelligent devices together with hardware manufacturers. We decided to open-source Silk because we see it as our contribution to a more intelligent and connected future. We're excited to invite everyone who shares this vision to build Silk with us.

The first open-source release of Silk will include the core platform capabilities, and over time we plan to open-source much of the advanced device intelligence features that we are using to create responsive experiences, including features like GPU-accelerated deep learning and computer vision support, facial recognition, object and audio analytics, and more.

We currently use smartphones to develop Silk-based experiences. Smartphones have all of the right hardware needed to run IoT applications, like a powerful CPU, WiFi, camera, microphone, speaker, display, and sensors. What had been missing is a robust software platform to take advantage of the hardware’s capabilities. Silk brings that missing piece - a responsive, intelligent, and secure platform that can act independently or as part of a complex system.

In the video below, we’d like to introduce our new developer evangelist, Ahmed Nefzaoui, as he walks you through a first look of the Silk platform in action. Ahmed demonstrates Silk programs running on a Silk-powered smartphone, communicating through Bluetooth LE, and interacting with a LiFX connected light bulb. Expect more updates to come regularly from Ahmed and the team.

You’ll notice in the video above that Silk is running on a Xiaomi RedMi Note 3 smartphone. We also run on a Nexus 4 and, of course, an emulator. Silk runs on an Android-based kernel, and we look forward to working with the open-source community to add more device support in the future. We envision Silk developers will upcycle their old Android smartphones into intelligent IoT devices that offer new and unique experiences at a fraction of the cost of many IoT developer kits with similar capabilities.

We’ll reach out to our early SDK backers on Kickstarter for feedback this week, and will fully open-source the Silk platform in the coming weeks. We will publish a roadmap and post regular updates and developments here and on our developer page.

In the meantime, be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest information about Silk Labs and the Silk platform. We are excited to see what you can create with Silk!

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