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Disney Takes Another Stab at the House of the Future 277

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the near-future-this-time dept.
Disney has announced that they are going to take another stab at showing us the "House of the Future". The 5000-square-foot house will appear normal from the outside but will house gadgets like lights and thermostats that automatically adjust when someone enters the room and countertops that can identify food placed on it and suggest recipes. "Millions of Disneyland visitors lined up a half-century ago to catch a glimpse of the future: a home teeming with mind-blowing gadgets such as handsfree phones, wall-sized televisions, plastic chairs, and electric razors and toothbrushes. [...] The $15 million home is a collaboration of The Walt Disney Co., Microsoft Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co., software maker LifeWare and homebuilder Taylor Morrison. Visitors will experience the look of tomorrow by watching Disney actors playing a family of four preparing for a trip to China."
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Disney Takes Another Stab at the House of the Future

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  • ...How integrated various forms of media are from each other in this house.
    • by sm62704 (957197) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:21PM (#22409842) Journal
      Microsoft has a hand in it, so considering how they write their software I doubt you can remove or replace anything in thhe house without the walls turning blue, black, or crashing down.

      If you remove the laser razor is it "House Of The Future Lite"? I'll bet you can only use Microsoft Light Bulbs and Microsoft Lamps because the bulb screws, light sockets, and wall plugs are all nonstandard and proprietary.
    • by ushering05401 (1086795) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:55PM (#22410316) Journal
      I would like to see a completely sound-proofed house with all appliances designed to work as quietly as possible.

      After all, it is highly unlikely that the volume of sensory input people have to endure outside the home is going to decrease anytime soon.

      Hell, people are already patenting devices to track your eyes so their adverts can talk to you if they think they have your attention.

      My home of the future might well resemble a faraday cage.
  • Any day now (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @02:56PM (#22409446)
    In addition to the standard house-of-the-future home automation, the house will also include its own micro-fusion electric generator (running on tap water), a landing pad for the flying car, and Duke Nukem Forever running on a secure update to Microsoft Windows.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @04:08PM (#22410476)
      Clippy:
      It appears you are burning your toast. Would you like some help with that?

      UAC:
      You are attempting to microwave a Cup-o-Noodle
      [Allow] [cancel]
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by mangu (126918)

      Duke Nukem Forever running on a secure update to Microsoft Windows

      No, the secure Microsoft Windows will be the server, Duke Nukem Forever will run on the Linux Desktop
  • by morgan_greywolf (835522) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @02:56PM (#22409450) Homepage Journal
    Full support for multiple DRM technologies is built into everything!
    • by Locklin (1074657) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:19PM (#22409806) Homepage
      I'm sorry, you want to use your toaster in the bathtub? You have to purchase extra permissions to do that: $50 at amazon.com.

      Remember, breaking usage agreements is STEALING. You wouldn't steal an old ladies purse, would you?

      Any unauthorized appliance usage, or sharing of appliances is deemed a criminal offense and will be instantly reported directly to Microsoft.com. Your house will enter a "restricted usage" mode, and will drop to below freezing until sufficient licenses are purchased.
      • I'm sorry, you want to use your toaster in the bathtub? You have to purchase extra permissions to do that: $50 at amazon.com.


        Well that's a terrible example. Some people think that doing incredibly stupid things like putting a high-current electric appliance with exposed elements in an appliance filled with electrolytic water (the salts provided by the you) and your naked person should have at least one aggravating step.
    • But ... (Score:5, Funny)

      by shis-ka-bob (595298) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:20PM (#22409822)
      That may work in the House of the Future, but it will never be approved by the Senate of the Future.
    • by SharpFang (651121)
      Yep, the table would display recipes for food placed on them, but only the title and first sentence. You'd have to pay for the rest.

      Also, if you place your MP3 player or a xero of a book or such, the house will automatically report you to the police.
  • by owlnation (858981) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @02:58PM (#22409474)

    countertops that can identify food placed on it and suggest recipes
    A whole house that has pop-up ads. That's not my future, I promise you. I'm thinking those bastards at the Sirius Cybernetic Corporation had a hand in the design.
    • by rucs_hack (784150) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:27PM (#22409914)
      Um, yeah, of course.

      What do you think are the chances of a computer controlled house with net access that *doesn't* spam you with ads?

      There will be three kinds of utility for your web house. I shall elaborate.

      Basic:

      All the 'features', but to access them you must willingly subject yourself to advertising, and targeted recommendations.

      Standard:

      All the features, no non elective ads, but you're still likely to have 'great suggestions' coming in, facebook app-like, trying to get you to winningly accept the ads..

      Premium.

      They give you the device, and leave you the fuck alone. Expect this to be itself in one of two further sub-categories

      sub-cat 1: Far too expensive for most people.

      sub-cat 2: Available only to selected people, likely not even able to be bought.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Abreu (173023)
      If they try that, those idiots will be first against the wall when the revolution comes
    • by UberOogie (464002) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:43PM (#22410164)
      Not only that, but can you imagine the amount of research they are going to have to do with cannibals considering that human hands will be the most common thing on the countertop?
  • by Mickyfin613 (1192879) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @02:58PM (#22409478)
    Visitors will experience the look of tomorrow by watching Disney actors playing a family of four preparing for a trip to China to welcome their new Chinese overlords. Fixt.
  • by DragonWriter (970822) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:00PM (#22409504)

    The 5000-square-foot house will appear normal from the outside but will house gadgets like lights and thermostats that automatically adjust when someone enters the room and countertops that can identify food placed on it and suggest recipes.


    So, technology that's been around for decades but not popular in homes, and technology that is a solution looking for a problem (if I've chosen to buy food, bring it home, and set it one the counter [or take it out of the fridge and set it on the counter] chances are I already had a use in mind—countertops that suggest recipes for food placed on them seem about as useful as as a closet that suggest where I might want to go based on the clothes I take out.)

    For $15 million, I'm not impressed.
    • by AvitarX (172628) <me AT brandywinehundred DOT org> on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:08PM (#22409634) Journal
      What would be cool though is fridge that checks it&#180;s contents and tells you recipes along with thigns you could make with just a little extra.

      It would solve the "there's nothing to make, but the fridge is full" dilemma.
      • by jedidiah (1196) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:29PM (#22409928) Homepage
        Better yet, it keeps track of how long stuff has been in there or
        checks for chemical signs of spoilage. From this it can either tell
        you that it's time to clean things out or time for a "leftover casserole".

        "Warning: Jar on back of bottom shelf has not been touched in 123 days..."

        "The 6th Day" had a pretty good Future-Fridge.
      • by geekoid (135745)
        I designed a fridge that did that in about 2000. I could not get funding. Very frustrating, but it would take 12 mill to get it developed, prototyped, and an initial run of a hundred. But once the process was fined tuned it could ahve been become a commodity feature in all fridge while we got fees from licensing. We would have also built some high end consumer and industrial fridges.

        Id woulds have also allowed you to connect from outside the home, get a list of contents, as well as a shopping list based on
    • by C10H14N2 (640033) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:15PM (#22409770)

      Yes, an entire house programmed to second guess your every move...to "help" you. How could that not be terrific?

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rB03aRifPLU [youtube.com]
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      countertops that suggest recipes for food placed on them seem about as useful as as a closet that suggest where I might want to go based on the clothes I take out.

      Actually, they sound even less useful than your idea - that closet might at least be good for some shits and giggles.

      "You're dressing up slutty tonight! Would you like directions to the red light district?"
      *sounds of an expensive talking closet being turned into firewood by an axe*

    • by countSudoku() (1047544) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:23PM (#22409866) Homepage
      Oh boy, I can't wait for the future house to tell me it's having a problem getting rid of a virus in the fridge-server and all my Choco-Tacos have melted! Then I'll set a nice tri-tip onto the counter and see if I can't get around the "Unrecognized Item on Counter! Abort, Retry, Ignore?" displayed on the inside of my eyelids. Future House I already hate you! :)

      Wake me when the house of the future runs on a platform that is secure and stable and relatively free of solutions in search of problems.

    • Yeah. The only part of this that I find really believable about features in a "House of Tomorrow" is the $15 Million price tag.

    • by gstoddart (321705) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:30PM (#22409944) Homepage

      So, technology that's been around for decades but not popular in homes, and technology that is a solution looking for a problem (if I've chosen to buy food, bring it home, and set it one the counter [or take it out of the fridge and set it on the counter] chances are I already had a use in mind

      Indeed. And, really, at what cost? Surely the current counter tops that most us have at under $10 / running foot aren't going to be something we replace with stuff which is as expensive as Corion or marble at more like $100 / running foot.

      Since nobody will ever be able to afford this level of technical indulgence, who the heck do they think will be buying it? Honestly, sometimes I think futurists are engaging in the worst sort of intellectual masturbation -- here's something which is completely impractical, that will never be wide spread or affordable, but let's pretend that in 20 years we'll all be using it.

      In the mean time, no flying cars, and the average schmuck still hasn't paid for his TV he bought on credit. Counter tops which suggest recipes will be something that only someone who can hire kitchen staff will be able to afford; in which case, they won't exactly need a suggestion, will they?

      The simple reality is, this is never going to be the house of the future, it's purely an intellectual exercise of what you can do with a boat load of someone else's money when you can charge someone admission to look at it. It's about as divorced from reality as you can get.

      Cheers
      • Look at the original Disney home of the future. would have cost you 50K+ to do it at the time. Now almost everything that was there is common place. It's a view of what might be. I am old enough to remember what a HUGE deal cordless phones where. Literally change things in the house. The were the gadget to have. Now there are common and not thought about, but the Disney home had them years earlier.

        The advantage to the Ma Bell Monopoly was that it had an entrenched process and they considered RnD a good thin
      • That type argument has been made before: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kitchen_debate [wikipedia.org]
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by snarfies (115214)
      Oh, I don't know. The countertop recipe idea might not be so bad. I do a lot of cooking, myself, because I enjoy it. Sometimes I buy ingredients for a future recipe weeks in advance, especially if I find it on sale (frozen meat, spices, etc), and I may buy more than I immediately need to store for later use. Or I may want to use up something - I almost never cook anything involving cream because I know that most of the cream will go to waste after I'm done with the recipe it called for. If the counter
    • "home, and set it one the counter [or take it out of the fridge and set it on the counter] chances are I already had a use in mind--countertops that suggest recipes for food placed on them seem about as useful as as a closet that suggest where I might want to go based on the clothes I take out."

      Actually I find both features quite useful. I may already have something in mind to cook already, but why not have the counter suggest something better
      or adjust the recipe? Also one may go shopping for generic ingred
      • Having the closet suggest alternative places based on how I am dressed wouldn't hurt at all. It would
        be nice if it could take other input too, like my mood etc. Even nicer to send the suggestions to my cellphone.
        Closet: I see you are both lazy and bored enough to just grab cheap jeans and a t-shirt. Might I suggest the LAN party down the street? You aren't in the position to be picking up a date at the local club.
    • by tompaulco (629533)
      So, I assume the salary of the future will be approximately 60 times what it is now. My 5,000 square foot home cost me about 1/60th that much 5 years ago.
    • "I'm not just a toaster! I can sing, too! And play MP3s! And -- I'd love to have your hot lips on my firm toast!"

      "Can you do bagels?"

      "I'm sorry, Dave. But do you want to hear me sing "Daisy, Daisy?"

  • by SoundGuyNoise (864550) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:00PM (#22409508) Homepage
    Oh the possibilites... - What happens if I'm in the shower and the OS crashes? Will it never turn off? - Will the toilet only accept one kind of input? - Will the house "phone home" to let said manufacturers know what I do in the house? (For statistics only, no personal information of course) - Will my furniture be compatible with the floor? - What if the fridge is stuck in an infinite loop and keeps ordering me eggs? - Can it defrag my junk drawer?

  • I hope its not like the GE house they had/have in Pittsfield, MA. It was supposed to be some modern house, listening to you talk, automated curtains, etc, but really was a guy in a hidden closet listening, and throwing switches.
    • by gstoddart (321705)

      I hope its not like the GE house they had/have in Pittsfield, MA. It was supposed to be some modern house, listening to you talk, automated curtains, etc, but really was a guy in a hidden closet listening, and throwing switches.

      "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain".

      Cheers
    • Victorian-era people called said gentleman a "butler". I never realized how ahead of their time they actually were until now...
  • China makes sense (Score:2, Informative)

    by Subgenius (95662)
    Of course, it makes sense that they are planning a trip to China, since all of the stuff in house was probably made there, and after the next big credit crunch, they might even be going overseas to pay forced-homage to the mortgage lender.
  • by ishmalius (153450) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:02PM (#22409532)
    As if we didn't hear enough "suggestions" in our daily lives. Didn't Ray Bradbury kill his house for this very same reason?
  • I know! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Stanistani (808333) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:04PM (#22409566) Homepage Journal
    The house of the future is a yurt. [wikipedia.org]
  • Impossible Future? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by drapeau06 (1010311) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:05PM (#22409592)

    Shouldn't a "house of the future" be smaller than current houses? If they are to be available to all humans, I mean.

    Also, I still have hope that USians will start using the metric system someday... so overall, I'd suggest that a more sensible house of the future would be about 100 or 200 square metres.

  • by rossz (67331) <`ogre' `at' `geekbiker.net'> on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:08PM (#22409628) Homepage Journal
    What's not mentioned is that DRM will be built right into your house. It will prevent you from doing anything that Disney considers a violation of intellectual property (as Disney defines it). That means your VCR won't record. Your DVR will self-destruct. Your computer won't download music or videos. You CDs will be locked to the first player you use the disc in. Your original and priceless manuscript of Grimm's Fairy Tales will smolder and burn (Disney now owns all that). iPods and other MP3 players will have permanent memory corruption. You'll be sent a bill for royalties if it detects you singing copyrighted songs in the shower (and the "Happy Birthday" song you sing for your kid on his third birthday).
    • The house of the future and we're not even using Betamax?! They lie!
    • by Creepy (93888) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:50PM (#22410256) Journal
      not only that - the friendly Microsoft voice activated software will help you run your home

      ~~Home of the Future Premium Edition~~
      me: Computer! shower on.
      computer: warning - this will change your current hardware settings, which requires admin approval - are you sure you want to do that? Say 'yes' to continue, 'no' to cancel.
      me: yes
      ~shower turns on cold water~
      me: computer - set water to 36 degrees
      computer: sets temp.
      me: computer -this is still freezing - I said use Celsius yesterday - don't you learn?
      computer: command not understood.
      me: computer: set water to 36 degrees CELSIUS
      computer: this is a US based system and only allows Fahrenheit temperatures. For international measurement packs, install House of the Future Ultimate Edition.
      me: *%*#%*^ - computer - set temp to 98F!
      computer: House temperature is now set to 98 degrees Fahrenheit.
      me: aaargh - no computer, set shower water temperature to 98F and house temp to 70F.
      computer: shower water temp set to 98F. please enter commands one at a time.
      me: computer: set house temp to 70F.
      computer: house temp set to 70F
      ~~shower~~
      me: computer - shower off
      computer: warning - this will change your current hardware settings, which requires admin approval - are you sure you want to do that? Say 'yes' to continue, 'no' to cancel.
      me: yes!
      ~~shower turns off~~
  • by HalAtWork (926717) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:08PM (#22409638)
    Wouldn't the house of the future be made up of easily interchangable parts that can be easily retrofitted to existing structures? It wouldn't be something designed from the ground up with today's bleeding-edge technologies. Part of the hassle of doing work in the houses of today are parts, fixtures, or even the location of holes, that are of a new standard and plain just don't work with anything else.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Xtravar (725372)
      They already make houses out of materials which exhibit the properties you seek.

      They're called "Legos".
  • by Statecraftsman (718862) * on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:09PM (#22409640) Homepage

    Much of the project will showcase a network that makes the house "smart" and follows family members from room to room - even adjusting artwork - to preset personal preferences.
    Does anyone get the feeling that we're all increasingly seeing what we want to see? Headphones and ipods mean we're less often exposed to the music of our parents, friends, and coworkers. We all go to our own favorite websites to check news(be it factual, entertaining, or agreeable) or socialize or whatever. We spend hours and hours in whole virtual worlds that are difficult to appreciate or explain without having spent those many hours there.

    While I think it would be awesome to see the art and decor transform depending on who walks into a room...this just highlights to me that we may become more disconnected from each other as we optimize the digital world to our own personal likes. Not that it's bad...maybe we were all meant to relate to each other through screens, keyboards, and mice. Maybe the benefit of the digital world is that it provides a better way to share experience when we choose. Either way, it's good to recognize what's going on.
    • by bcattwoo (737354) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:21PM (#22409838)
      I totally agree. For example, cellphones, Blackberries, etc, make it easier for us to stay in touch with people far away while increasingly distancing ourselves from those right around us. And now, instead of having the kids bugging you in the car, you just pop a DVD in for them. Even having listening to the DVD audio is too much to ask, you say? Upgrade to the wireless headphones!
    • by enjahova (812395)
      Seeing what we want to see doesn't sound so bad when you think of how things were, seeing what THEY want us to see. I think people have way more musical choice now, even with ipods and headphones. The music of our parents was broadcast on every station and available for sale in every store, if we want it, we know where to find it, but we have so much more choice now. We all go to our own favorite websites to keep up to date, rather than tuning into one of a few channels where somebody else decides in what o
  • It's the house of THEIR future. 'They' being the megalithic companies that sponsor this type of thing. I bet their won't be any Linux-based appliances (i.e. Tivos) in there. Or any Jonathan Coulton music playing. Or anything else that's open-source. Down with everything! Just don't take away my XBox....oh wait.
  • this is a photo of the house of the future:

    Grass Hut [old-picture.com]

    RS

  • Closets will help pick out the right dress for a party. Countertops will be able to identify groceries set on them and make menu suggestions.
    I know when I wake up in the morning I think, "Gosh, I wish my house yammered at me more."

    I dunno... this all this sounds really annoying.
  • But (Score:2, Funny)

    ...does it run Linux?
  • Trip to China? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by bcattwoo (737354) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:14PM (#22409748)
    "Visitors will experience the look of tomorrow by watching Disney actors playing a family of four preparing for a trip to China."

    Probably just their normal daily commute to work.
  • Tough House (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Bob(TM) (104510)
    When it comes to aesthetics, designers decided to stray from the Jetsons-style House of the Future - an all-plastic cross design with four wing-shaped bays that appeared to float. The house was so tough that wrecking balls bounced off it when Disney ripped it down in 1967.

    The new home will be made of wood and steel and finished in muted browns and beiges, said Sheryl Palmer, president and chief executive of Taylor Morrison in North America.


    I dunno ... I kinda think a house tough enough to withstand a wrecki
  • countertops that can identify food placed on it and suggest recipes.
    Great, and probably insult me over my choice of vegetables. Or, chastise me over not buying enough "organic".
  • And built it just off-site. That way, they could have included something like an Orgasmatron without actually making anyone angry at Disney.
  • Did anyone else initially interpret the title as "Disney once again tries to lobby the candidates for the House of Representatives"?
  • I finally get to find out if that's real beef in those burritos!
  • The little cleaning robots from iRobot are cute; but they're Rod Brooks dumb. They navigate by bumping into the walls, and have no idea where they are. They're round, so they can't clean in corners. They're really only slightly better than the one in the GE kitchen of the future from 1956.

    We need less home automation, and better building automation for meeting rooms of all sizes. Audio, video, lighting, and HVAC should be handled intelligently by the room control system, with next to no user input re

  • Visitors will experience the look of tomorrow by watching Disney actors playing a family of four preparing for a trip to China." To look for work.
  • How do I turn this crap off? If I put a piece of food on the counter I'm either:

    a) putting it there temporarily because I just bought it for future use in a recipe and haven't put it away or
    b) putting it there to be used in a recipe I am currently making

    I don't need something to tell me what I can make with whatever food is sitting on the counter. What if I leave my bananas sitting on the counter (which I do)? Will I be bombarded with a non-stop barrage of recipes or ideas on how to use those bananas unt
  • by stormguard2099 (1177733) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:32PM (#22409994)
    Father: Come on medicine cabinet! I need my insulin!
    Automated medicine cabinet: The serial number on your refrigerator seems to be invalid. Please call 1-800-chinasoft for assistence.
    Father: Alright but hurry up I have to get to work.
    Phone: It appears your telephone service provider is not supported. Can I interest you in signing up for MSNfone?
    Father: I knew I should have installed linux but I just couldn't find those drivers for my countertop and showercurtain .
  • by neostorm (462848) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:33PM (#22410000)
    I'm surprised that's all they could come up with... It sounds like it was designed by whimsy than practicality. Nothing they mention sounds like an ideal house to me. Maybe thermostat, but I live in Southern California, so it's not like that fluctuates a lot...

    In the "future", I'd really prefer a house that -
    1) helps me keep it clean. I've always envisioned a carpet that has a vacuum system beneath it, and will suck up all the dirt and grim and little bits from below.
    2) an in-sink dishwasher, where I can simply pile my dirty dishes into the sink, slide the top closed, and let it do it's thing without me having to clean by hand or pre-scrub and load them into a separate unit.
    3) has an embedded software system that will help me track my chores and tasks for that day, wake me in the morning, remind me of events on certain dates... basically calendar software that can be accessed from any wall in the house. (probably the closest scenario to what they have in the article).
    4) runs energy efficient! uses energy recycling tech to generate as much of it's own power supply as possible - i.e. solar power, walking around generates kinetic energy picked up through the floor, running tap and shower catch access energy as they drain, etc.

    I don't know, I just made this up off the top of my head by looking around my apartment (you can guess what shape it's in), but I think Disney's little inventors are looking too much in the direction of luxury, and not enough in the direction of practicality and things that people would really want to help them live their lives more comfortably.

    • 1) . . . will suck up all the dirt and grim and little bits from below.

      That would be one mighty vaccum considering it would have to pull all the dirt, skin flecks, dead organisms, etc through the bottom of the carpet.

      2) an in-sink dishwasher

      Unless you're a bachelor, it would take forever to wash a load of dishes for a standard-size family (two adults, two kids)

      3) that will help me track my chores and tasks for that day, wake me in the morning, remind me of events on certain dates...

      It's

  • Laundry idea (Score:3, Interesting)

    by CopaceticOpus (965603) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:36PM (#22410072)
    Most of their ideas are cute but not especially helpful to anyone. I'd throw all those ideas out for a real laundry machine. I want to toss my dirty clothes in at night, and the next morning have them waiting for me, cleaned, dried, ironed, sorted, and folded.
    • by russotto (537200)

      Most of their ideas are cute but not especially helpful to anyone. I'd throw all those ideas out for a real laundry machine. I want to toss my dirty clothes in at night, and the next morning have them waiting for me, cleaned, dried, ironed, sorted, and folded.
      You can get something similar. It's called a "servant". Unfortunately thanks to that darn Abe Lincoln, they're only available on a subscription basis nowadays.
  • by dtolman (688781) <dtolman@yahoo.com> on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:37PM (#22410090) Homepage
    5000 square feet? Thats not a house - thats a mansion! Are they going to China to find a full time cleaning crew to chase after the dust bunnies in their 8 bedrooms and 6 1/2 bathrooms?

    Just the same - I'm a sucker for Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, and look forward to visiting the protype house of the Corporate Liege Lord in the future.
    • by demaria (122790)
      It's also a working Disney attraction. It needs to be large enough to handle the tens of thousands of people walking through it every day.
  • normal (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jemminger (914046) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:47PM (#22410222)
    "The 5000-square-foot house will appear normal from the outside".... just like everyone else's 5000 square foot homes ;-p
  • Countertops (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    "countertops that can identify food placed on it and suggest recipes"

    how stupid is that... when my food gets on the countertop, it's because I already know what I am going to do with it...

    Will I need to empy my fridge on my countertop to know what to cook every day?

    Anyway, it's been tried before and it's totally useless.... instead it should track what you have in the fridge and suggest what you can cook with what you have... or tell you what to buy to make a specific recipe...

    Me: What can I cook ?
    Fridge: B
  • A 5,000 square foot house that costs $15 million? And has a carbon footprint larger than some third-world cities?

    The real house of the future will be small, will be built from recycled/recyclable materials, and will be energy efficient. And, will be affordable by someone who is not a CEO.
  • by Dr. Eggman (932300) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:54PM (#22410294)
    Popsci has another take on the Home of the the Future [popsci.com].

    My house wouldn't be built around gimmicky crap like auto moodlighting or suggesting recipies. Mine would be more practical innovation. Bathrooms and kitchens coated in titanium dioxide treated to dissapate dirt and mildew [popsci.com]. It'll have a 3D fabrication Printer [popsci.com] to print out dishes or maybe even chair parts when we have extra company. Automated machines to cut the grass [lawnbott.com] (if I don't go with bio-engineered no-mow grass [wired.com].) The construction itself will be steel framed and built using modular panels but build to be reconfigurable (relativly.) Replacing drywall with bolted or snap-in-place steel-backed panels (the exposed surface side could be bare steel, have wood glued on, wallpapered, etc.) allowing for me to access the interior portions of the wall with ease. My particular aesthetic would be bare steel panels, with cables run along the outside in bundles, but it would be easy to reconfigure it to appear 'classical' with the wires hidden behind the now covered panels. I want my home of the future to be flexable, low(er) maintenance, and something that will last.
    • by theguru (70699)
      With all those steel panels, you'll get GREATE wireless reception. :) Make sure it's well grounded in the next lighting storm too.
  • by jagdish (981925) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @03:54PM (#22410310)
    I got this from somewhere. p2pnet I think. What if the bad guys win? Going to the movies is not what it used to be. Security at the studio-owned theatres is heavy, it's not a trip to be taken lightly. But if you want to see the film everyone is talking about without waiting a year for the home release, you have little choice. When you enter the lobby the first thing you see are long ranks of tiny, thumbprint activated lockers. This is where you must leave all of your electronics, your personal server and peripherals, even your watch, and you had better not be wearing smart spectacles or contacts. As you enter the security zone you're scanned for anything you may have forgotten. Cochlea and optical implants must be capable of responding with a coded RF identification signal to indicate their systems are secure and cannot record. People with older models, or models implanted abroad where such interrogation is illegal, are turned away. Perhaps they would like to see one of the older releases? Once through the scanner you must submit to a biometric ID test - this is where the known bloggers, hackers and spoilers are ejected. Finally there is the non-disclosure agreement to be signed - these days most moviegoers choose to sign via the MPAAs annual subscription, just trying to take some of the hassle out of visiting the cinema. Finally you get to see the film. In the auditorium the audience is constantly scanned by an AI looking for suspicious activity, so don't rummage in your pockets for too long. It's strange that all this effort to protect the movie industry has done so little to improve the movies. You don't really own your home computer, or even the data you keep on it. Oh, you paid for it, just like you paid for the fibre-optic Internet connection that it can't function without, but now it squats under your TV using your electricity and does more work for the content industry than for you. The nightly security patches it downloads for itself don't secure your computer against attackers, they secure the system and software against you. TV-on-demand seemed like a dream come true when you first opted in and upgraded all your hardware, but the slowly encroaching charges are becoming a disincentive to turn on at all. Sometimes the last episode of a series makes up 50% of the cost of the whole season. The Internet is not what it used to be. It's expanded, naturally, the technology giving everyone mobile PCs with vast ad-hoc networking capabilities, it's faster, more efficient, and more available, but it's also more restrictive. Since the ISPs were made responsible for the content they deliver their filtering has become neurotic. Anti-terror, piracy, plagiarism and libel filters search every request and response for signs of illegal activity, always erring on the side of caution. Wikipedia's index has been decimated. Popular blogs like Boing Boing now have more lawyers involved than contributors (the one's that have survived that is). Even if you managed to get something illegal through the filters your operating system's regularly updated self-check mechanisms would eventually root it out, or report you to the authorities, usually both. These days it seems like every time you turn on one of your gadgets you have to fight with its DRM to get it to do what you want. The home movie of your daughter opening her birthday presents is ruined by a patch of grey fog that shifts with every movement of the camera, tracking sluggishly to keep the TV screen in the background obscured. From the codes embedded in TV's update pattern your camera had decided the show was not licensed for this form of reproduction and blocked it. You wish you had thought to turn it off at the time, but squinting into the camera's tiny screen it hadn't looked so bad. Even once recorded, your own media is not safe. Everything is stored on your home PC, trapped in the solid-state drive's proprietary filing system. Once there, the only reasonable way to transfer it is to another trusted drive from the same vendor - the DRM won't recognise any other brand of
  • It should be exciting to think about the vast majority of humans who need habitats. They will not have $15,000,000, as their average income rounds out around $60 per week. If you want to impress me with the home of the future, describe a place that can provide protection from the elements, including hurricanes, monsoons, etc. Provide warmth, cooling (for food), waste elimination and water filtration (see Dollar a day) [thinkquest.org]. All on an average yearly income of less than $3200 Per Capita Income [success-and-culture.net]

    We have a lot
  • Best janitor breakroom ever?
  • by MSTCrow5429 (642744) on Wednesday February 13, 2008 @05:10PM (#22411384)
    In 2007, the average US single family home was 2,330 square feet. It would be nice to see a home of the future that isn't of a size current day mansion. I'd love a huge house, but realistically, very few of us can truly afford one.

Never invest your money in anything that eats or needs repainting. -- Billy Rose

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