Following the recent tour video of the Microsoft Home, I’ve been looking out for more “in home” technology advances and the last few weeks has turned up a bumper crop of gadgetry aimed at making our living spaces more intelligent.
First up is the cute video above from Ericsson that I’m still getting my head around but the notion of all the devices in my house talking to each other to make my life better – I sort of like it. I think. I especially like the Navibot device “talking” to the sofa and the way all the devices are negotiating on when it's a good time to use power etc. The fact is that kind of stuff really isn’t that ridiculous as sensing is becoming increasingly cost effective to add in to all manner of things – we just need to figure out what we want these things to say to each other.
Next up is is a system from Kohler called DTV prompt. It seems on the verge of overkill to me – a device that lets you remotely control the flow and temperature of water in to your shower or tub. The aim is to ensure when you hit the shower it’s already at the right temperature and therefore help to save water.
That brings to me the new Aga Kitchen range. For those not familiar with the Aga Kitchen legend it’s name is actually “Aga Kitchen Range” (not a range of Aga Kitchen’s) and it’s something of an icon in Britain and kitchen of foodie types worldwide. This is no ordinary cooker which frankly you’d expect when you see the $14,500 price tag. It has changed little from the original 1935 model that is gas or oil fired and is typically used to heat a house as well as cook food. The major drawback to the Aga has been the fact that it takes about half a day to get up to operating temperature which is pretty useless if you want to boil an egg.
Step forward the Aga Total Control – now sporting a touch screen control panel and an 8 minute start up time. What’s more, the company has promised an iPhone app that will enable users to remotely fire up the beast – presumably from the comfort of bed. Joking aside, it’s a sign of the times that gear like the Aga is becoming touch enabled and Internet connected. Now I just wan to know if they’ve shaved anything of the base weight of almost 900 pounds.
The video is worth a watch to see quintessential Britishness mixed with some augmented reality style graphics.
Finally on this topic (for now), an infographic from The House Designers Blog that includes a number of technologies we showed in the Microsoft Home video but plenty of new ones to keep you on your toes. How many of them will become real? Many of them I hope, but in particular the solar heated pool