October 31, 2007 by Ben Hardy
Ok, it’s official. The home of the future really is a “smart” home. How smart? It will be able to talk.
Alright, I’ll admit it. We’re not talking about a HAL in every home (and thank God for that. I wouldn’t want to hear “Daisy, daisy” all day long). At least not yet. But if connected homes start incorporating Sensory, Inc.’s new SonicNet technology, electronic devices could start using sonic tones to communicate with one another. Thanks to the RSC-4x chip, audio frequency communication can solve the line-of-sight issues that prevent infrared control from operating successfully.
Sensory use an example of devices receiving “instructions” from remote locations via a telephone (press a button, lower the temp) or the Internet. As long as the RSC-4x chip is incorporated in the device, all that is additionally needed is a speaker and a microphone.
I can hear it now: a home filled with the beautiful symphony of beeps, buzzes, and burps as the security system instructs the thermostat; the media center pleads with the lights, and so on. Actually, Sensory, Inc. claim that the tones can be imbedded in speech or sound effects (“Lights On”) so as to not be so obtrusive. But I’d settle for the symphony, as long as none of the devices hit a high C.
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Between watching re-runs of the The Jetsons and convincing his Insteon and Z-Wave controls to get along, Ben Hardy is immersed in the world of home automation, home control, and home networking.
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