Feeds

House of the future to feature talking mirror

Does my bum look big in this?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Researchers from management consultants Accenture are focussing their powerful brains on what technology the house of the future will contain. They believe that ageing populations in the western world will have an increasing need for houses that can keep an eye on their inhabitants. Technology could also monitor the health of older people and help them stay in touch with their friends and relatives.

The researchers are concentrating on five brilliantly-named projects including "persuasive mirrors" and "connective tables". Persuasive mirrors can apparently show a person what they would look like if they did no excercise and paid no attention to what they ate and drank. This reporter already has one of these devices in his bathroom if anyone from Accenture is interested...

The connective table will use video conferencing to let you play games and socialise with people in different locations.

Accenture is also predicting the arrival of shared scrap books which family members could add pictures and video to but older people could access like an ordinary book.

Interactive pictures could act as a direct way to contact the person pictured. With a camera attached they could be used for video calls. Project leader Luca Rossi said that technology for older people needed to be simpler to use: "... just standing in front of the picture could open a channel to me without doing any funny stuff on the keyboard or logging in," he explained.

Researchers also believe the house of the future will monitor what activity is going on with cameras and software to help it make sense of the images it picks up. Software could monitor facial expressions, posture, gait, focus of attention and what objects they touch or move in the house. This could monitor people's emotional state as well as pick up early signs of age-related illnesses like Alzheimers.

It all sounds fairly familiar, although they've left the obligatory flying car out of their utopian vision. Furthermore, there's no mention of what happens when such technology turns bad. But we at Vulture Central still recall with a shudder the cautionary tale of Maureen from Whitby who was eaten by a cyberloo on a shopping expedition to Newcastle-upon-Tyne. And it is abundantly clear that the Accenture futurologists are not aware of the chilling fate of Italian village Canneto di Caronia. Enough said. ®

Related stories

US develops motorised robobollard
Fire-breathing buses threaten London
Cyberappliances attack Italian village

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
You think the CLOUD's insecure? It's BETTER than UK.GOV's DATA CENTRES
We don't even know where some of them ARE – Maude
Want to STUFF Facebook with blatant ADVERTISING? Fine! But you must PAY
Pony up or push off, Zuck tells social marketeers
Oi, Europe! Tell US feds to GTFO of our servers, say Microsoft and pals
By writing a really angry letter about how it's harming our cloud business, ta
SAVE ME, NASA system builder, from my DEAD WORKSTATION
Anal-retentive hardware nerd in paws-on workstation crisis
Astro-boffins start opening universe simulation data
Got a supercomputer? Want to simulate a universe? Here you go
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.