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'Smart' House Texts You If There's a Problem

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high-tech doll's house

Credit: University of Hertfordshire

It may look low-tech, but a smart doll's house could one day change the way we live, its inventors claim. Part of a project called InterHome, it is designed to test and demonstrate how much greener and secure our homes could be if they incorporated intelligent technologies that adapt to our daily routine. And it's easier to chop and change those technologies on a small scale until the researchers get it right.

Developed at the University of Hertfordshire, UK, the house is fitted with a network of infrared sensors connected to a central computer. By working out which rooms we tend to occupy at different times, software algorithms learn when we need the lights, heating or air conditioning systems turned on and, perhaps more importantly, when we don't, says Johann Siau, the project's coordinator. His tests suggest such technology could cut carbon emissions and slash energy bills by an estimated £300 per year, on average.

View a video of the dollhouse with technologies that learn occupants' habits.


From New Scientist
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