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Automated Home Management

Apr 6, 2004 4:17 PM, By Elizabeth Boyle

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Imagine walking into your kitchen and having the lights turn on automatically. Think about the energy you could save if your blinds and lighting automatically adjusted for the amount of sunlight entering your home. CasaWorks, a division of Metrics Technology, announced the Cielo Home Management System, a hardware- and software-based solution that offers these and other functionalities.

The Cielo Home Management System lets homeowners control household electronics including lighting, climate, security, and entertainment systems using PDAs, tablet PCs, Webpads based on Windows XP and Windows CE .NET, programmable remote controls, and PCs running Windows XP or Windows 2000. Cielo uses cameras, motion detection, and object tracking to sense the occupation and movement of users in the home. After sensing the movement of users, the technology modifies temperature, humidity, light level, and other environmental factors. You can also configure the product to automatically adjust lighting and environmental factors such as temperature for when the house is occupied and unoccupied.

In addition, Cielo can control security panels. Users can select home and away arming modes from any supported user interface and Cielo will monitor user access and send an e-mail notification when the system is armed or disarmed. Cielo provides biometric interfaces including face recognition and support for fingerprint readers so you can activate access control and personalized home behaviors based on recognition of each user. CasaWorks expects a late spring or early summer release of the Cielo, which costs $2500 to $7500, depending on hardware and software configuration.

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