Last week we covered the basic principles of “Intelligent Buildings”, and this week we will extend the concepts in to the field of “Home Automation.” Although the field of “home automation” is extremely diversified, it does not mean that home owners cannot take individual elements from the field that offer cost savings and life savings benefits. Home owners should start asking questions about, “how does this product integrate into the master home automation plan?”
Home automation is the residential extension of “building automation”. It is automation of the home, housework or household activity. Home automation may include centralized control of lighting, HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning), appliances, and other systems, to provide improved convenience, comfort, energy efficiency and security. Home automation for the elderly and disabled can provide increased quality of life for persons who might otherwise require caregivers or institutional care.
A master home automation plan reaches out and embraces your HVAC, lighting, computers, smart phones, audio / video systems, security, medical alerts, intercoms, domestic robots, yard watering, pet feeding, your new electric car and other systems in your house, garage and yard. (Did I forget the coffee maker?) Although this vision was originally proposed more than 50 years ago, it is only recently that the technology and cost have matured to the extent that this vision is now a reality.
This is a great list to start with. Next blog we will continue by look at the organizations and standards that enable an automated home.