INDIANAPOLIS - As Indiana tech companies work to position the state as a potential global leader in the Internet of Things space, an industry executive says its impact will spread well beyond the technology sector. ClearObject Chief Executive Officer John McDonald says, for example, autonomous vehicles will shape the future of industries including mass transit, logistics and even food and hospitality. He discussed the rapidly-emerging industry during the first "The New Crossroads" podcast, co-hosted by Ice Miller LLP.

McDonald calls autonomous vehicles "the most exciting" development in Internet of Things technology. He says driverless vehicles could ultimately allow for more cars on the road at once, driving faster and more safely. He says every vehicle could become a "train car," disrupting the mass transit industry, and faster road travel could mean regional flights and air carriers could become unnecessary. In short, he says,  "One little idea completely changes the entire landscape."

McDonald is not the only one touting Indiana's potential to lead in the IoT space. Former Indiana Chief Innovation Officer Ian Steff, who has since been tapped for a role in the Trump administration, spoke at last year's IndyIoT summit and said Indiana's industries must work together to capitalize on the opportunities the sector presents, saying the industry is "ours to lead."

Launch Fishers is also looking to take a leadership role, developing Indiana IoT Lab-Fishers. The facility in the city's certified tech park will involve industry and education partners and provide the opportunity for collaboration, research and internships.