Where the smart house really differs from other houses is that a communications infrastructure is installed that allows the various systems and devices in the home to communicate with each other.
The modern home contains a variety of systems, such as:
These usually exist in total isolation from each other. In the smart house, these systems and devices are able to pass information and commands between them so that, for example, the security alarm can turn the lights on or off.
In developing the smart home, Davmark™ Group looked at how people currently use their homes and worked out how different technologies could make everyday tasks simpler or easier.
Existing equipment in the home can be adapted to provide more functions; for example detectors normally used for security alarms can be used to identify if someone is in a room.
New equipment can also be installed to automate tasks such as opening doors or windows.
Computerised controls have become more and more common in our homes. Computers control our washing machines and microwaves, they turn our heating on and off, and they have provided new ways to monitor the safety and security of our homes.
The smart home looks at expanding the use of these computers into other parts of the home, creating a single network that can be easily and conveniently controlled.
The use of computer controls removes the need to actually flick a switch or turn a knob to make something work and allows elements of the home to be controlled remotely by, or to respond automatically to, the people living in it.
The smart home relies on a number of small computers distributed around the house that are either used to turn devices and appliances on and off or to send and receive information.
These computers are linked together using either a dedicated cable or by sending a special signal through the mains electricity cables.