Smart Home Products Are Changing The Way We Live

Although it wasn’t always the case, our homes are gradually becoming repositories for modern technology. Here are some of the ways that smart home products are changing the way we live.

Improving The Air We Breathe

Unfortunately, our homes are filled with particles which can potentially damage our health. Dirt from outside gets dragged into our carpets, exposing us to toxins and making us more susceptible to allergic reactions. But now a company called Airdog has come up with a home filtration system that you can use when you suspect air quality issues.

Essentially, it’s a gas-mask type product which slips over the nose and mouth and has an additional unit, connected to via a pipe, which connects to the arm.

Air dog hope that people can use their filter in their homes while they’re doing things that throw up dust, like the vacuuming, or when the windows are open in the summer, and allergenic particles are flowing in through the open windows.

Improving Our Home Security

drone
Wikipedia

Home security systems have come a long way in the last few years. The majority are now properly integrated with private security providers through the cloud who can monitor practically everything that’s happening in your home. Now though, drones are being refitted for the purposes of home surveillance. Powered by Qualcomm, it’s hoped that these new drones will give homeowners the ability to safely monitor criminal activity on their property without putting themselves in direct physical danger.

Giving Us Cheap Sous Vide Immersion Circulators

Sous vide is a cooking method usually reserved for swanky Michelin star restaurants. But it could be coming to a smart home near you, thanks to a combination of smartphone apps and mini sous vide cookers which look a little bit like blenders from a company called Anova Nano. The company says that its new sous vide machine, which is about the size of a toaster, can sit on your kitchen side, poaching food to perfection, with the help of the companion app.

Improving Dimmer Switches

Dimmer switches have been around for decades. But now the components company Belkin has decided that it wants to take the experience of dimming the lights up a notch. It’s invented a dimmer which it claims is the “second generation” of dimmer light switches for smart homes.

Doing The Vacuuming For Us

Will smart vacuums ever take over the world? Probably not. Until now they haven’t been able to successfully take over our homes. At this year’s CES, Black and Decker unveiled their first ever smart vacuum product. The company claims that its better than the offerings from other businesses in the market so far and that it’ll suck up dust from your floors for less cash.

Giving Us App-Controlled Lighting

lights
Flickr

Despite its obvious benefits and simplicity, app-controlled lighting is still a rarity. Having said that, some companies, like GE are trying to offer customers smart lamps. GE’s smart lamp can be controlled by its own app and looks like something right out of the film Tron. This is futuristic stuff!

Creating The Perfect Home Office In 3 Easy Steps

A home office should ideally be a place within your humble abode that is away from the distractions of modern life. You don’t want to be busy beavering away looking through important documentation within earshot of the kids playing Xbox in the living room. At the same time, you don’t want your office to be totally devoid of human interaction otherwise you may as well be working on site. Working from home has given us the freedom to enjoy our comforts while, at the same time, allowing us to strive to be as productive as possible. Take a look at these tips to help you create the perfect home office.


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Space

Ensure that you have enough room to set up a desk, chair and any equipment that you might need. If all you need is a laptop and a desk lamp, the space you require will be considerably smaller than if you need to set up lots of photography equipment for your business. Make sure your designated space is light and airy, and conducive to working. A dark, dank space will not motivate you in any way and will see you retreating to the comfort of the couch. It would be ideal if you had a view and plenty of sunlight to inspire your productivity.

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Alone Time

It’s important that your home office remains solely for working purposes and doesn’t take on other uses such as a laundry room or a place to store the latest junk you’ve acquired. When the usage becomes blurred, you are less inclined to want to work in the space. Your mind will be preoccupied with cleaning up mess or organizing the room.

It’s vital that the space is private. A small area inside your living room is ok as a final resort, but if the rest of the family is chilling out watching a good movie, you’ll inevitably find yourself getting distracted. It might be a good idea to invest in a small extension to create the privacy you need. You could take a look at personalloan.co and investigate the different types of loan that are available to you to cover the costs of the renovation. Then, you’ll have the privacy you crave, and you may have added value to your home.

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Be Organized

There’s nothing worse than an untidy desk or an overflowing waste paper bin. There won’t be a magical cleaning fairy who’ll dispose of the rubbish in your bin overnight, so you must ensure that you keep on top of cleanliness. Use stationery holders and binders like the ones seen on lifehack.org to organize your equipment and documents. Every time you switch your laptop off or put your pen down to retreat back into your home, ensure you leave your office tidy ready for the next day.

Creating an office space within your home can create a great working environment. As you become more productive, you can take advantage of the emergence of agile working and utilize your home office space to its full potential.

Personal space to work at home.

I used to take for granted that I have my own work area in our old home. I designated a small space in a corner of the living room for me to work at. I have a computer table, a comfortable chair, and my own electric fan for when it comes really hot in my little corner. It was my home office and my income-earning little space.

workdesk

We now moved into a new home. Bigger than the one we used to live in but this time, I don’t have a nook where I can put my home office at. I tried taking a corner but it’s just not the same.

It finally dawned on me how important a personal space at home where I can work and not be disturbed. I can’t do as much work in our new home because I don’t have the same personal space as I used to. I really miss that corner!

I do believe that there’s a way for me ‘capture’ that ambiance of my old corner. I just don’t know exactly how.

Maybe I should start with a table and chair I’d feel comfortable using. And… any other ideas?

Condo living: Life in a box.

Can you see yourself living in a condominium unit? Can you live in a small space usually provided in condo units, say 25sqm only? That’s like a very small room with everything crammed in it!

I can see myself living in a condo unit but only by myself. I can’t see the whole family packed inside one, like sardines in a can! Most units sold are just too small and can only be occupied by a maximum of two persons. Three, if there is a loft. Aside from space, the price is also staggering! Can you imagine paying 3 million pesos (roughly US$68,000) for a small space? You’d be lucky if it comes with a balcony.

condo unit

To be honest about it, one of my younger sisters and I like condo living. Especially if the condo building is situated in a busy commercial area where there are lots of restaurants and fast food joints. That would make eating easier for us. But the rest of the family isn’t sold on the idea of living in a literal box. I can understand why and I know space and title of ownership play major factors in it, not to mention the amount of a unit that can also pay for a modest size house and lot somewhere in the south.

These days, though, with the unpredictable weather causing harsh downpours and flooding, living up in a building seems a much better option than living in a traditional house prone to being submerged in flood waters. And I do believe that this is the very reason why condominium units are selling like hotcakes nowadays.

My question for you is this: are you sold on the idea of condo living?

Living in the metro

new home

My sister and I are often on the lookout for a place where we can move into. A new home for the family. A neighborhood where it’s quiet and near the road as much as possible. We are not looking for a grand place to live in. We just want a modest home, one which we won’t be too embarrassed to invite friends over.

But you know what? Almost all the houses in the metro, in the vicinity where we currently reside, are being sold at exorbitant prices. You need to have at least 3M pesos (roughly US$75,000) to buy a modest townhouse or condominium unit. If you want a detached house and lot, be ready with at least 5M pesos (roughly US$125,000)!

Yes, there are houses being sold at lower prices. But I’m talking about houses in the far Northern QC or those in the Rizal areas. Places too far from schools, hospitals and offices.

The whole family wants to stay in the Quezon City area, preferably in this same area we are now but in a different neighborhood. I guess I have to work so much harder each day and save up every extra penny I have to be able to buy that brand new house for the family and to stay living in the metro.

Meralco bills

The amount of our Meralco electric bills are “see-sawing”. About two months ago, it started decreasing as we are really cutting down on our electric use. But for this month, I was surprised to find it back to the high amount it was. I checked if we’re consuming more than the previous month. But that’s not the case. Our electric consumption is actually almost the same as last month.

Meralco is duping us with this electric bill refund they’re boasting about. I believe that while we are all focusing on the refund, they are increasing the cost of those other charges they are billing us every month.

I don’t know if you notice this but as I budget and pay for the bills every month, I am aware of this see-sawing Meralco bills.