Smart Houses & Appliances

Adding Intelligence to Houses and Appliances

For [Michael] Coen, the question is not whether people will take to intelligent environments - but when. "If you look at the history of indoor plumbing and indoor electricity, these are technologies...that met with opposition. People thought they were frivolous. And look at how they've revolutionized how we live," he says.
- from The walls have eyes - and ears and ...

Imagine a future where human environments respond to human preferences and needs. In this world, devices equipped with simple intelligence and the abilities to sense, communicate, and act will be unremarkable features of our world. We will expect the car to warn us of hazards, track our location and provide timely route advice. We will speak to simple machines and hold conversations with more complex systems, such as intelligent homes that will help us monitor conditions, track routine tasks, and program the behaviour of the heat, the lights, the garden watering and the entertainment centre. Analogous systems at work will make simple decisions in our stead ranging from scheduling meetings to negotiating for common services over the web. Such systems will also acquire, and adapt to our preferences over time. In sum, we will come to view simple software intelligence as an ambient feature of our environment. The infrastructure for ambient intelligence is fast coming on line. Computational resources are cheap and becoming cheaper, while ubiquitous network access has started to appear. Market forces will soon produce applications.

-from 1st Workshop on "Artificial Intelligence Techniques for Ambient Intelligence" (AITAmI'06) Call for Papers

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