You use ThingSpeak to Send and Receive "data" via simple HTTP requests, much like going to a web page and filling out a form. Data can be from anything -- Blood Sugar Levels measured by a glucose meter, Server Usage and Uptime reported by servers, or Location Info from a mobile phone. Once the data is in ThingSpeak, you can build applications that retrieve the data, use the data for process decision making, and reporting.
Data is stored in a ThingSpeak Channel. Each channel allows you to store up to 8 fields of data up to 255 alphanumeric characters; 4 dedicated location fields for Location Description, Latitude, Longitude, and Elevation; Status Update to augment the data; and a Time Date Stamp to time code each piece of incoming data.
Do you already have a bunch of data collected from data acquisition devices, server logs, or sensors? Then you can use the ThingSpeak Importer to bring in your existing data and leverage the ThingSpeak API and Charts to share with and connect to applications instantly.
When pulling data out of ThingSpeak, you can process the data to get it ready for your application. You can also filter the data by setting minimum and maximum value thresholds. Processing options include time scaling, summing, averaging, and median.
Often enough you will find times where you want to share significant data across social networks like Twitter. You can have your garage door Tweet, "You left your garage door open" or have your house, say "Today's Power Use was 6150 watts." The ThingSpeak API has Twitter baked in, so you can send status updates to Twitter along with storing your data in a ThingSpeak Channel at the same time.
ThingSpeak supports over 40 time zones and time offsets for locations that support Day Light Savings. When charts and data are presented to users, we format times and dates using the viewer's time zone. The user interface for ThingSpeak currently supports English and Brazilian Portuguese languages automatically, but the localization file is available for translation into other languages. ThingSpeak numerical data supports commas used as decimals, for example, it's getting 38,2 degrees in here, for our friends in Brazil and many other countries.
We respect your privacy. You can choose to make your data public or private. Over 95% of ThingSpeak Channels are private meaning that the data is not publicly accessible without API keys and user authentication. You can control who has access to your data and build applications that are open to those that you choose. We don't sell your data to third-parties. You can even run ThingSpeak on a private network at your facility or home and build tightly secured applications for your organization's needs.
The ThingSpeak API is available on GitHub for download and installation on your own servers. You can also take the source code and make changes and contribute new features. ThingSpeak is a modern Ruby on Rails 3.0 application and includes everything to get started including, a full web application, User Management, API Key Management, Channel Management, and Charting. The license for ThingSpeak is under GPLv3 for open source use and can be licensed from ioBridge for closed source applications. ThingSpeak has been installed on over 500 servers and licenced commercially since its release on GitHub in March 2011. Contact ioBridge for licensing options for commercial use. ThingSpeak will be powering many new services and products coming to market in 2012.