Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Smart appliances

I want my fridge to be smart so that when I leave the door open (detected by door sensor) or the temperature increases for some other reason (detected by temperature sensor) I can get alerted to this, by an audible alarm or email. But I also want it to be programmable, so that I choose the conditions under which it alerts me: I don't want a bunch of alert emails just because I've been loading the fridge with the product of that week's shopping trip.

Similarly, the oven. I want alerts (audible and email) to tell me I've left the oven or hob on. But I want to choose the conditions under which I get them. I don't want alerts because I've left a slow-cooking dish on all day.

Also, ovens could deliver novel cooking instructions. Rather than the standard 200oC for 2 hours, the instructions might be 100oC for one hour, increasing to 200oC linearly over the next hour.

User control/customisability is key.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Solar/wind-powered wimax

Getting wired broadband to the countryside is proving problematic, with the cost of infrastructure quoted in the 10s or 100s of thousands in some cases. Would it not be cheaper and quicker to run a set of solar and wind-powered (with battery) wimax transmitters/receivers across the fields?

Custom metadata

I think that the metadata system for mp3s should be redesigned to support custom/personalised metadata. This would enable people to label their tracks as "favorites", "car tunes", "party tunes", "bathtime classics", etc.

Custom bikes

There are three points of contact between people and bikes: the seat; the handlebars; and the peddles. Bikes typically allow adjustment of the seat post height and, to a much lesser extent, the handlebars. In both cases these adjustments are in a constricted motion relative to the peddles.

I envisage a bike fitting device for shops that allows the seat, handlebars and peddles to be moved independently of each other to attain the perfect arrangement (and height off the ground) for the customer. This would work by attaching the seat, handlebars and peddles to adjustable supports on the walls/floor. The shop staff can adjust the location of all three points of contact and then the customer can peddle away (connected to a flywheel [or generator - free energy from your customers!] to simulate the force required) and see if it is comfortable. When the customer is happy with the arrangement, the measurements are taken, then sent away to be custom manufactured.

Monday, 7 June 2010

Youthful dreams

Why should we honour the naive dreams and ambitions of our youth? Surely it is those dreams we have once we have experienced life that we should follow? And what should we do until then? Strive to be in a position to realise those dreams once we have them.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Things to reduce things to to make them understandable


Direct file transfer between portable devices

Sharing files between two PCs is easy: you can do it over a home wifi/wired network; you can do it over a direct cable connection network; you can do it over a ad hoc wireless network; you can transfer files with a memory stick; or you can use the internet. Sharing files between portable devices (e.g. mp3 players) currently requires a computer. Would it be possible to create a portable device (no larger than an mp3 player) to all direct sharing of files between portable devices? Or is this perhaps a function for a smartphone? Perhaps you could plug the mp3 player into the smartphone to transfer files too or from it?