"Smart House." It's a loaded concept. It looks good on paper. It sounds pleasant enough But...who would want a smart house? And what does that really mean? More importantly, why does it concern you? After all, you've never had any trouble turning off your own lights. You can remember to lock all of your doors and windows before you leave for work. You're perfectly comfortable belonging to your house...aren't you?
One of the first things any professional learns is that the best process is a streamlined process. E-mails, spreadsheets, graphs, reports -- these all work for you to make the act of working easier by removing unnecessary efforts. You can perform smarter, not harder. By these means, you work your project. You don't let it work you. But faced with the prospect of streamlining our homes, we begin to grow uncomfortable. But home automation is about making you morecomfortable, more creative, more effective in the process of living. Let's unpack what's involved.
- What is home automation?
Home automation is simply the process of making the tasks involved in having a home automatic. What that means is: maximized for efficiency. Keeping your home and family safe and secure, enjoying savings by means of energy efficiency and monitoring, even ordering the things you need as you need them, are all part of what you can incorporate into a comprehensive home automation system.
- How does that work?
The technology involved in automating your home has come a long way from the complex and expensive processes involved in making machines more robotic and human-centric. Home automation now includes technology such as Z-Wave technology, which essentially turns your home into a network of processes which communicate with each other. These become controllable via touch pads placed throughout your home, in key rooms, or even installed on your smart phone. You can now control lights, locks, security, sound, and video from the comfort of your office or your favorite reclining chair. Think about a remote control for your television, and then expand the possibilities by about a thousand.
- But why would I care about that stuff?
If you think you don't care about the things you call simple and mundane, think about how often you've had to stop what you're doing to make sure all the kids are coming down for dinner. Or had to run off to the store because you forgot to get laundry detergent. Or needed to walk across your house to change the thermostat. They are all simple tasks, easily within the reach of most capable humans. But they interrupted something that was much more worth your time. They added to an environment that demanded your attention. How many moments have you lost worrying about the security of your home? Would you really gain nothing by being able to monitor the safety of your most valuable possession with your phone, even while you're on a business trip on the other side of the city, or the country, or the world? The fact is that you do care about these things. Home automation and the technologies that continually add to its capabilities allow you to take care of your home's upkeep without distancing you from the things that make you happy.
If the savings in time doesn't seem valuable enough, maybe the savings in money will mean something to you.
- Okay, tell me about the money.
Let's imagine you've added smart control to your HVAC system. You leave at 7 a.m. and leave the temperature comfortable for the rest of the household. But everyone else is gone by 9, and nobody turns the thermostat down before they leave. But that's okay - just check the thermostat from your office, and drop the temperature with the touch of a finger. You've made your home more energy-efficient. But how do you know if everyone is out of the house? Well, you've added monitoring to your home, and you can see what's going on in every room. You can see if any suspicious activity is taking place in your absence. While checking the cameras, you notice that someone left the bathroom light on. Another tap -- and it's off.
You can already see the potential savings stacking up.
- Okay...but is it really worth it?
Is it worth it to you to own your home and have it work for you, or are you always going to be comfortable belonging to your house and all of your assets? While an alternative is possible, why would you want to slave over your things and their needs? Didn't you buy that stuff to take care of your needs?
- So...what kinds of systems are available? And what do they cost?
If you're curious about what home automation can do for you, and which system might be the right one for you, you should contact a systems specialist immediately. There are already so many possibilities, and the prospect of even more innovations in efficient living has never been brighter.