Overheated? Turn up the AC with AWS IoT


The IoT thermostat looks a little different… Photo courtesy of alex_why(CC No Derivatives)

Is it hot in here? AWS IoT can help, and qwikLABS can show you how with our brand new lab: Introduction to AWS Internet of Things (IoT). Does this lab sound familiar? That’s because it was one of the #nextqwikLAB winners earlier this Summer. 

So what does AWS IoT have to do with heat? Other than IoT being hot new technology, this lab teaches you how to use AWS IoT to detect temperature changes in a simulated environment, and control the thermostat accordingly. It’s a three part lab (pretty in-depth for an intro freebie), but don’t let that scare you away. 

What I like about this lab:

  • This lab keeps you busy. In a good way! We try to keep intro-level labs simple. They are geared towards AWS first-timers and freshmen. This lab sticks to basic concepts, as an intro. But you do a lot, and when you finish, you feel like you’ve had a busy hour. 
  • You walk through a real-world scenario. Sounds obvious, but it’s great to get hands-on practice with a problem you know you will encounter in real life. As you go through the lab, envision applying the strategies and tools in the lab to your environment.
  • Lots of images. I appreciate visuals when I’m learning, especially when in unfamiliar territory (of course it’s a personal preference). I like to see screenshots that either confirm I’m doing it right, or point out that I’m doing it wrong and I need to try again. 

Tips, tricks, and where I went wrong (so you can learn from my mistakes):

  • At the start of the lab, the EC2 instance takes a couple of minutes to get started. The lab is creating resources you’ll need in the background – it may take up to 10 minutes (but it should not take longer than that). 
  • If you’re a Windows user, download and install PuTTY before you start the lab, to save time. Here’s how: https://qwiklab.zendesk.com/entries/108093553-Using-PuTTY

  • In part 1, when you generate the certificate from the command line, make sure to enter the correct region, and make sure you use the region code. For example, if you are in the US West (Oregon) region, use “us-west-2”. More on regions here.
  • In part 2, check your spam folder. My SNS subscription notice ended up in my spam filter. All four times I did the lab, it ended up in my spam folder. 
  • Since this is a free lab, you can take it more than once. Since this lab is jam-packed with information, take it twice 🙂 On the second round, breeze through parts 1 and 2, spend some time on part 3, and take a look at the “If you have more time…” section. 

Check it out now!

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