@Smeeh: Thanks for your comments. Yes, I completely agree with you. I was trying to understand it from a different angle.
It could sound funny...but the first thought that occured to me after reading this was: as things would be monitored remotely, no need for the service guys to travel frequently to check whether things were working as intended. Less travel means less pollution... :)...okay...just forget it.
Instead of counting the sensors , we should look at IoT as solutions. The Solutions will have more visibility for the investors and the solutions will include everything from the sensors, to communication infrastructure, to the hardware and off-course the software and this whole solution will lie somewhere between the Cloud and the sensors.
So in my opinion the Cloud and the Sensors are the two end points of the future connected world and we need the solutions as the connecting dots to get the investors there.
One way to become a leader is to find a parade and run to the front of it. I got some sense of that in this story, especially since the idea of the IoT has been around for quite a while. The roots of it began at least 15 - 20 years ago, but at that time we didn't have the communications infrastructure in place to do it. Now we have that infrastructure and the necessary cheap, powerful computer power to pull it off in a meaningful way. Personally, I see this as a place for IEEE or other standards orgaization to define the protocols and conventions.
Granted, there is a place for a marketing vision of IoT. The advertising blitz from Cisco is a good start for this, and maybe there is a vacuum into which these guys can step, but it seems far-fetched to me.
By measuring and registering environmental parameters at millions of places, our understanding and awareness will increase drastically and as a result we will act more wisely in utilizing our resources.
Rick, i think that the next logical step should be to sell this vision and get funding. This should not be impossible because the sensor market is growing and there are challenges and opportunities ahead.