Note: another interesting service for declaring and sharing data… through the cloud. Possibly the most simple we went through. Dweet.io.
Also to be mentioned with a similar goal but more complete/complex, OpenRemote.
Note: Thingful is a “search engine” (beta version) for data and artifacts/sensors that produce data (the coming “Internet of Things” so to say, but also and mainly weather stations, aircrafts and Rastracks at this day). Already quite loaded, the content of the search engine and its map will with no doubt explode in the close future. It is a project by former creators of Pachube (in particular Usman Haque), which was an open webservice to “store, share and discover” data from realtime sensors, now sold and therefore private… It was sold to LogMeIn in 2011 (which is somehow a sad destiny for an open data project, but this is a different story) and became then Xively.
Echo is a connected object for your home which is activated by voice recognition. It’s a loud-speaker connected to the “cloud” via Wifi, so it’s main use seems to be streaming music. It’s apparently able to understand and answer queries said in “natural language”, like “Play some Henry Mancini” (activates your Amazon Music Library, Prime Music, TuneIn or IHeartRadio account). Of course, it’s main features are shopping-oriented but a few aren’t: you can ask for information about say, Ronald Reagan and it taps into Wikipedia and reads the page, it’s linked to weather prediction pools so you can ask about tomorrow and you can manage personal to-do lists. Unsurprisingly, “Echo’s brain is in the cloud, running on Amazon Web Services so it continually learns and adds more functionality over time”. The object’s also got a dedicated control app, which runs on Fire OS, Amazon’s new smartphone Operating System.