The use of visual programming tools and techniques for rapid in field ad-hoc edge of the network situational application integration in a coalition environment.
The upsurge in interest in "Internet of Things" technologies, solutions and products has brought with it a plethora of new tools to exploit them. Among these there are some more visual tools that provide a "flow based programming" 1 model. These would seem to be applicable to the in-field trials environment where rapid integration and re-configuration of devices under test may be required, especially in a coalition environment where differing interpretation and implementation of draft standards may cause interconnection issues. By using flow-based tools the integration of preconfigured "blocks" can lead to fast results, with higher accuracy than traditional programming techniques. We proposed and deployed one of these, Node-RED2, at a UK MoD Land Open Systems Architecture (LOSA) field trial in October 2014. This paper describes how the use of the Node-RED visual wiring tool, allowed very fast integration of networked assets during the field trial. These included individual sensors, gateways to soldier systems, and access to a NATO coalition partner's assets (vehicle, soldier and micro-uav).