Sunday, January 5, 2014

Device for home automation

In my last post I wrote about MyBell, one of five finalists in the Engadget Insert Coin Competition. Another finalist is Smart Power Strip.

This article describes the Smart Power Strip:

This device is described as "a power strip with a little extra." It has a built-in WiFi module, and the controls let you turn the individual outlets on and off using a smartphone and the company's proprietary app. And this can be done remotely, so you can check which of your appliances are on, or turn them on or off before you get home. It also has a power-consumption tracker so you can see how much energy your appliances are using.

Most of my students agreed that this would be very useful, and since they already have smartphones, they were able to discuss which appliances they would like to manipulate remotely.

In addition to information about the product, the article noted above has a simple explanation of how the device works, which would be a good example text for students learning how to write process descriptions.

I'll check up on this innovation in the next few months to find out when it will be available commercially. The article says the device will be "cheap," so it might really be something my students would buy.

This link has a video (11:27) of highlights of the Insert Coin event:

There is information about the Smart Power Strip on the website Kickstarter - a website for inventors and innovators to describe their ideas and seek funding for their products:

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