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Smart Houses & Appliances


Living with Astro, Amazon's home robot

#artificialintelligence

Amazon's household robot is exactly what I expected, but it's not what I wanted and it definitely isn't what anyone asked for. Instead of a multitasking mimicry of me that can empty the dishwasher, pick up my kids' shoes, feed the dog, and clean the house, Amazon's first attempt at a home bot is simply a souped-up Echo Show on wheels. It also has two cameras that it uses to find people and places in your home to deliver items, reminders, or timers. It can act as a security guard and patrol your home when paired with a Ring subscription, and it can fart and burp. In short, the Astro does everything Amazon's smart home products and services already do -- only on wheels. But the Astro is a robot. And that part is really cool.


The best smart lights you can buy

Engadget

One of the best places to start when building a smart home ecosystem is smart lights. Not only are they relatively affordable compared to other IoT gadgets, often costing between $10 and $50 a bulb, but they can also completely change the feel of your home. You can go from boring and analogue to colorful and automated within minutes, and there are endless possibilities when it comes to creating funky-colored light scenes, setting schedules and more. But like the rest of the smart home space over the last few years, there are now more players in smart lighting than ever before. We tested out some of the most popular smart lights on the market and found that most of them are quite good, but there are differences in compatibility, color quality and mobile app usability that are worth considering before deciding which system will be right for your home.


The Morning After: Dyson's secret robot projects

Engadget

The NFL's rumored streaming service could debut in JulyDyson, the company that's recently branched out into hair curlers, air-purifying headphones and not cars, has revealed it has an entire division secretly developing robot prototypes for household chores. The company didn't detail any of the models specifically, but many look like robot arms adapted to do specialized home chores, like cleaning and tidying. Dyson also showed off its Perception Lab dedicated to robotic vision systems, environment detection and even mapping humans with sensors, cameras and thermal imaging systems. So why reveal its secret lab now? Well, Dyson's on a recruiting drive, looking for around 700 engineers to help finally make at least some of these ideas a reality in our homes.


IKEA made a Matter-ready hub with a new smart home app to match

Engadget

IKEA continues its foray into smart home devices with the launch of a Google Matter-ready hub called DIRIGERA and a new IKEA Home smart app. With the new device and app, the Swedish company is promising to handle more smart device segments while making device integration easier. It says the app will be "convenient, easy to navigate and user-friendly" for anyone just getting into smart home tech. "With the new DIRIGERA hub for smart products, users will be able to onboard all IKEA smart products to the system and steer them individually, in sets or in groups in the new IKEA Home smart app. This enables users to create different scenes with pre-set functions of the smart products and increases the personalisation options for the smart home," according to the company.


AiM Future Joins the Edge AI and Vision Alliance

#artificialintelligence

AiM Future, a leader in embedded machine learning intellectual property (IP) for edge computing devices, announced it has joined the Edge AI and Vision Alliance. AiM Future is accelerating the transition from centralized cloud-native AI to the distributed intelligent edge. Its market-proven NeuroMosAIc Processor (NMP) family of machine learning hardware accelerators and software, NeuroMosAIc Studio, enables the efficient execution of deep learning models common to computer vision applications. "It is our company's pleasure to join the Edge AI and Vision Alliance," said ChangSoo Kim, founder, and CEO of AiM Future. "As a premier organization for technology innovators revolutionizing artificial intelligence across the edge computing spectrum, the partnership is a natural fit. It is clear AiM Future's vision of bringing the impossible to reality is shared by the Alliance and its ecosystem. The field of edge AI is rapidly advancing and partnerships are fundamental to addressing the many challenges and limitations of today's edge devices."


GrAI Matter Labs Launches Life-Ready AI 'GrAI VIP', A Full-Stack AI System-On-Chip Platform

#artificialintelligence

GrAI Matter Labs unveils life-ready AI with GrAI VIP at GLOBAL INDUSTRIE. GrAI Matter Labs is a company in brain-inspired ultra-low latency computing that specializes in Life-Ready AI. Artificial Intelligence is the closest thing to natural intelligence. Artificial intelligence that feels alive. They make brain-inspired chips that act like people.


New Programming Language Gen by MIT Makes AI More Accessible

#artificialintelligence

The future of technology is all about Artificial Intelligence. The rapidly growing trends of the industry would open doors to various opportunities and new developments. For instance, voice recognition and motion sensors have become built-in features in most devices and people expect to see more of what is coming. Being a major part of computer studies, Artificial Intelligence primarily focuses on the development of machines, which are programmed to work and think like humans. The technology consists of speech recognition, problem-solving, learning, and planning.


Yale Assure Lock SL review: Never get locked out again

ZDNet

In the span of four months, our family sold a house, made an eight-week international trip, moved across the country, and then bought a house, all with three kids under five in tow. In the process, we stayed in eight different Airbnbs and sampled a variety of smart locks. These locks are becoming commonplace in short-term rentals, due to the convenient ability for hosts to share entry codes remotely with guests instead of having to meet in person or leave a lockbox with a key. Trying several brands of smart locks and using them so often convinced me that I would get one for the next home we purchased. So when we got lucky enough to go under contract on a house in a sizzling home market, I quickly started researching and comparing different locks.


Designing societally beneficial Reinforcement Learning (RL) systems

Robohub

Deep reinforcement learning (DRL) is transitioning from a research field focused on game playing to a technology with real-world applications. Notable examples include DeepMind's work on controlling a nuclear reactor or on improving Youtube video compression, or Tesla attempting to use a method inspired by MuZero for autonomous vehicle behavior planning. But the exciting potential for real world applications of RL should also come with a healthy dose of caution – for example RL policies are well known to be vulnerable to exploitation, and methods for safe and robust policy development are an active area of research. At the same time as the emergence of powerful RL systems in the real world, the public and researchers are expressing an increased appetite for fair, aligned, and safe machine learning systems. The focus of these research efforts to date has been to account for shortcomings of datasets or supervised learning practices that can harm individuals.


Smart home standard Google Matter coming later this year

ZDNet

Google announced on Wednesday at its I/O 2022 convention that it plans to finally launch Matter, its new but delayed smart home industry standard later this year, and has explained how it will work in home ecosystems. Matter, developed in collaboration with Apple, Amazon, and the Zigbee Alliance among others, will let users connect all enabled devices to Google Home and control them both locally and remotely with the Google Home app, including smart home controls on Androids and Google Assistant. Matter controllers will include the original Google Home speaker, Google Mini, Nest Mini, Nest Hub, Nest Hub Max, Nest Audio and Nest Wifi. Devices will connect using Fast Pair and will feature multiple compatible voice control systems and networking protocols, including Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri, as well as Thread. While the Fast Pair feature has previously been used for headphones and audio gear, Google announced that it will soon be able to sync lightbulbs and smart plugs with Android and Nest devices. "With Matter, there's no need to build multiple versions of a smart home device to work across different ecosystems.