Historically there has been numerous unifying architectures that “solves everything”. In the era of smart homes and buildings, technologies such as Lonworks and KNX, promise to give a solution for connecting everything. But that is only true as long as everybody adheres to the same technology and as we know that will never happen!
Only IP has managed to be the common denominator, regardless of the communication layer. Regardless how good the proprietary technology is for example zigbee and KNX, they all need an IP-gateway. Even equipment in buildings such as pumps and fans start to have IP connectivity instead of proprietary communication buses. In later years the thrive to connect things to the Internet, all players have created IP based connectivity to cloud services.
To bridge between business sectors and protocols different middleware projects has emerged. OSGI was one of the first, fi-ware.eu a big one at the moment. These are all good intentions but they all fail due to the large implementation work to comply to the middleware framework. Developers tends to go for the “cheapest solutions” skipping good designed frameworks for easy hacked tools.
I’m now taking part in the fantastic development of a solution that actually can be the solution using XMPP to solve real interoperability between business silos take a look at the iea.sust.se project and the effort att xmpp.org code available at github