By Brian FullerNumbers, history and technology are on a collision course inside your home.Consider the numbers:The big picture points to an even bigger opportunity for smart system design that can reduce power in and out of the chip.Since 1982, growth in peak demand for electricity has exceeded transmission growth by almost 25% every year. Yet spending on research and development – the first step toward innovation and renewal – lags.If every American household replaced one incandescent bulb with a compact fluorescent bulb, the conservation savings could light 3 million homes and save more than $600 million annually.Upwards of half of an average home’s electric bill pays for the “infrastructure mortgage” on the grid.Now some history: The electrical grid is a century old; power-plant construction has slowed to a trickle. Railroads, airlines and roads have been upgraded more regularly in that same century.Technology, of course, has exploded in the past four … [Read more...] about Home Sweet (Power-Hogging) Home?
Ontario home ownership savings plan
6 April 2010—Telecommunications networks suck up 2 percent of the world's energy production—equivalent to the energy produced by 50 million cars—but technologies now in the works could cut that consumption by 99.9 percent. That's the goal put forward by Green Touch, a new consortium of companies and research laboratories, at a meeting in Paris in mid-March. The consortium's prime mover, Bell Labs, the research division of Alcatel-Lucent, began by examining ongoing research in its own divisions and in other companies' research outfits. "We are all working on programs to improve the efficiency by a factor of two, or three, or five," says Gee Rittenhouse, head of research at Bell Labs. "What was lacking was the idea of how far we can go. When we did the calculations, we found that the energy efficiency of a network could be improved by a factor of 10 000 or higher." That sort of legerdemain would require superadvanced technologies, such as those that transmit information … [Read more...] about New Green Touch Telecom Consortium Reveals Energy-Saving Plan
If there’s one resource we can’t afford to waste, it’s water. And now, thanks to the latest home innovation from Roost, your smart home is helping you help yourself. Meet the Roost Smart Water and Freeze Detector, which claims to alert users to four key areas of concern: water damage due to leaks from broken pipes and appliances; frozen pipe water damage; mold and mildew damage caused by high humidity conditions; and inefficient energy use attributed to abnormal indoor temperatures.The new system represents an expansion and deviation from Roost’s traditional product line, which previously comprised the Roost Smart Battery and the Roost Smart Smoke Alarm. The Smart Water and Freeze Detector, however, takes the company’s Wi-Fi product lineup one step further, utilizing smart sensor and connected app technology to save consumers money in terms of their water bills and keep them safe at the same time.“We are excited to introduce the Roost Smart … [Read more...] about A $49 Smart Water and Freeze Detector could save you a fortune in home repairs
Thinking of upgrading your home electronics to smart devices? Or maybe just looking to make your smart home even smarter? Whether you’re new to the idea of a smart home or already a full-on enthusiast, plugs such as this TP-Link Smart Plug Mini, currently 30 percent off on Amazon, are the perfect gadget for building or expanding any smart home.Automatically set your devices to turn on and off as needed with the plug’s scheduling feature — you can even program the lights in your home to go off as the sun rises and turn on as it sets. This plug also provides an advanced level of security with the Away Mode, that allows you to set lights to turn on and off to give the appearance that someone is home when you’re away.This plug is designed to be compact, to keep your outlets free and available for other uses. At only 1.5 inches thick, it’s considerably smaller than the average smart … [Read more...] about Add some smarts to your home and save 30 percent on the TP-Link Smart Plug Mini
Dreams of home ownership usually do not include figuring out landscape irrigation systems. That is probably a good thing, because the average irrigation system can bring otherwise competent and confident people to tears, or worse. Manuals seem only to add to the confusion. The usual solution is to hire someone to set up your system and to be on-call in case something goes wrong.On Thursday, Jerusalem-based Tevatronic launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund the manufacturing startup of Exilong, the company’s water-saving smart irrigation control system that promises to give you your life back.“Today’s irrigation solutions are either scheduled solutions or decision supported solutions, we are the first autonomous solution,” Tevatronic CEO Oleg Korol said. “We don’t only allow users to forget about their garden, we encourage it — because we know that our data is going to help our technology water the plants better than any human … [Read more...] about Exilong smart home irrigation system promises to save water and frustration
Labor Day is a time of rest. You’ve worked hard week in and week out, and now you’re finally being rewarded with a nice three-day weekend. However, that doesn’t mean everything isn’t going to start right back up again on Tuesday. While many people use their extra time to go on vacation or relax, sales by retailers will be going strong. You shouldn’t have to choose between shopping and you’re vacation, so we’ve rounded up some of the best Labor Day sales to save you time. If you’re looking to save a little money on everything you need for work, school, and everyday life, we’ve got your back. Tech SalesEveryone needs a little tech in their lives. Whether you’re looking for an upgrade or just something shiny and new, these sales have got you covered.Up to 60 percent off at Amazon: Save on some of the best tech and a whole lot more with this awesome Labor Day sale from Amazon.Up to 60 percent off at Newegg: Save big on computer … [Read more...] about Score big savings on everything you need with our favorite Labor Day sales
There can surely be few things worse than a house fire – the sheer terror felt upon discovering the flames and the battle to ensure the safety of loved ones, followed by a desperate feeling of helplessness as you stand and watch all your worldly possessions quite literally go up in smoke.Well, a Kansas man who found himself in this very situation Friday morning was having none of it. His first reaction when he realized his house was on fire was, like most sensible people, to scarper out of his property pronto. But having made it to safety, the horrible truth dawned on him – his Xbox was still inside.Risking life and limb to rescue his beloved machine, the man reentered the inferno to seek out his precious gaming console and carry it to safety.We’re happy to report that both exited the fire-stricken property safely, though reports suggest the man came off worse, as he had to be treated for smoke inhalation.It’s not clear which model of Microsoft’s gaming … [Read more...] about Man runs into burning home to save his Xbox, both survive
At its highly anticipated event earlier today, Apple announced a host of third-party, home-centric apps, designed to work with the new Apple Watch, which is scheduled to hit the market on April 24. Honeywell Lyric Fear not if you forgot to lower your thermostat before bed. Use Honeywell’s Lyric Thermostat to save on your electric bill by choosing the, “I’m Going to Sleep” mode. Departing your assigned geofence? A notification will appear on Apple Watch, directing you to an option to set your house to “Out of Town” with a simple finger pat. You can also make temperature adjustments automatically in time for your return and receive a real-time snapshot of your home system along with extreme temperature warnings – all from your wrist. Green Kitchen This gadget helps you maintain a … [Read more...] about Wear your home on your sleeve with the new Apple Watch
With the launch of its new BlackBerry 10 platform at the end of last month, the-company-formerly-known-as-RIM is hoping to stem the tide of companies and government agencies switching over to iOS and Android devices for its employees.A report over the weekend from Apple Insider, however, suggests it’s business as usual, with home improvement retailer Home Depot apparently planning to dump BlackBerry in favor of Apple’s iOS platform. A Home Depot representative told Apple Insider the switch will result in 10,000 employees handing in their BlackBerry handsets.“We are replacing our current base of BlackBerry technology with iPhones,” the representative said, pointing out that the decision will affect store managers, district managers, corporate-level staffers and field ops.As you might expect, BlackBerry shares on Monday reacted badly to the news, with their value falling by around four percent.While the plan to switch to the iPhone may have been in place for a … [Read more...] about BlackBerry shares slide as Home Depot switches 10,000 workers to the iPhone
Like a modern proof of Newton’s Third Law of Motion – for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction – as more people cut the cord between them and their cable and satellite providers, those providers look for ways to retain customers and bring new customers into the fold. To maintain this delicate Yin and Yang balance (and, you know, make money), Warner and Comcast are looking beyond their traditional cable, telephone and Internet service offerings and getting into the world of security and automation.Time Warner’s system, called IntelligentHome, is rolling out nationally and, according to Time Warner’s Website, “puts you in control of your home like never before.” Comcast is offering similar packages with its XFINITY Home Control and Home Secure systems.Considering most of our relationships with most of our cable companies, it would be understandable if the idea of giving them even more control of your home gave you the malaria … [Read more...] about Honey! The Cable Company Wants To Automate Our Home!