Design of smart homes takes into consideration technology as well as the wishes, needs and fears of residents.
The research results of Research Director Frans Mäyrä’s Morphome project confirm that test subject perceptions of computer technology are often critical or negative. The idea of computers playing a central role in the home is anathema to many. Computers are seen as being complicated and unreliable, so no one would readily submit key household functions to their control. Conversely, there is a great deal of curiosity in computer technology as well as interest in new applications. ”Test subjects listed, for example, their wishes for a small infoscreen in the foyer which, as they were leaving the house, would alert them if a potentially dangerous electrical appliance was left on or they had forgot their keys,” explains Mäyrä. The Academy of Finland-funded project has created models for use in the design of future smart homes and compiled data on the acceptibility of proactive technologies as a part of everyday life.
Smart homes can advantage proactive technology, which the home uses to respond to the wishes of its residents and adjust household functions accordingly. For example, locks, lighting, climate control or various appliance functions can be seamlessly adapted to the time of day, day of the week, or resident wishes. The more commonplace this type of technology becomes, the more important is the need to understand the needs, knowledge, wishes and fears that people associate with its applications.
Terhi Loukiainen | alfa
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