Brian McLane

Media and Social Commentary

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February 7th, 2011 · No Comments · Technology

Maybe not yet but soon.

If you run out the door and leave the stove on, or the water running, or forget to arm the system, no need to worry…. you’re house will do those things for you. Which begs the question, “What will homes look like in the future?” And when will this start happening.

The answer is now.

Bill Gates’ home is a good example although I’m not sure I’d want some of the comforts he’s implemented. Everyone in the home is pinned with an electronic tracking chip. Stop right there. I think I’d be called away on urgent business as soon as I knew that. It’s bad enough that all our internet surfing habits are tracked and no doubt stored in some super computer. But supposedly as you move through the rooms in Chez Gates, lights come on ahead of you and fade behind you. Your favorite songs will follow you throughout the house which could be a little annoying. Same with television (though I don’t know why or under what circumstances one would find themselves watching TV at Bill Gates’ house. But the chip keeps track of all that you do and makes adjustments as it learns your preferences. When two different chips enter the same room, the system tries to compromise on something that both people will like. I can’t imagine that works but the point is, the house is thinking

But it’s more than making sure the stove was turned off or that the security alarm was set. These smart platforms are an excellent evolution and step forward for disabled persons, and for implementing green solutions. And just as importantly I can see if the kids are doing their homework or watching iCarly. With a smart home, you can see what’s going on – on your phone, no need to even have to make it to a laptop. Programmed lighting and perhaps even fragances.

Smarthome was started based on the realization of a need for automated products that make life easier, safer & more enjoyable. Anything in your home that uses electricity can be put on the home network and at your command. Whether you give that command by voice, remote control or computer, the home reacts. Most applications relate to lighting, home security, home theater and entertainment and thermostat regulation.

But for me the most important applications are the security ones. Motion sensitive flood lights record video and audio onto a SD card that is secured in the unit, and once it runs out of memory it records over the file, so you can just set it and forget it. About $14 billion was spent on home networking in 2005, and analysts predict that figure will climb to more than $85 billion by 2011.

Here’s an interesting video what’s new on the home front.



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