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IIC Report Defines Framework for Distributed Edge Computing

By Ken Briodagh
October 27, 2020

In a recent release, the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) announced the publication of its Industrial Internet of Things Distributed Computing in the Edge Technical Report. Designed for IoT system architects and implementers, the report describes a distributed computing framework that moves the capabilities of data center-based cloud computing closer to intelligent IoT devices at the edge.

“In edge computing, data, networking, storage, and computing are distributed throughout layers of edge computing nodes from IoT devices to the data center – distributing the economies of scale of cloud capabilities throughout the system,” said Chuck Byers, Co-Chair, IIC Distributed Computing Task Group, and Associate CTO, IIC. “The migration of cloud capabilities into the edge allows data, storage, and computation to gravitate to where it can be handled most efficiently, whether in a data center or the edge.”

The technical report includes:

  • A structural and functional framework for distributing computing in the edge
  • Definitions of key architectural concepts employed in distributed edge computing
  • Essential capabilities of an edge system's elements
  • Security and management functions
  • Essential interfaces for these elements

System architects reportedly can use the framework as a template to derive a concrete distributed computing architecture. Operations technologists, information technologists, network and business managers can use the report to learn more about the essential elements and advantages of distributed computing in the edge.

“Distributed computing, and the nodes and edge systems that form its key components are essential to the success of organization's critical IoT systems and digital transformation plans,” said John Zao, Co-Chair, IIC Distributed Computing Task Group. “By moving to a distributed edge computing architecture, organizations across industries can reduce costs and meet critical performance, trustworthiness, and efficiency requirements for their IoT applications.”

The Industrial Internet of Things Distributed Computing in the Edge Technical Report is free of charge. The technical report and a list of authors who contributed to it can be found on the IIC website.


Ken Briodagh is a storyteller, writer and editor with about two decades of experience under his belt. He is in love with technology and if he had his druthers would beta test everything from shoe phones to flying cars.

Edited by Ken Briodagh

Editorial Director

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