One year ago, I had the opportunity of visiting a place in Redmond, WA that my eyes couldn’t believe, Microsoft’s House of the Future. One thing I can tell you is that Jetsons‘ home exists, well, at least its prototype. And, the features I could see first hand depend in great measure of RFID (or Radio-frequency Identification) devices and light (particularly from LEDs – light-emitting diodes) capable to recognize/transmit coded information. Those who are familiar with supply chain management know that Wal-mart has led the industry forcing to implement RFID devices to empower its logistics system, and now it is everywhere (most probably you have one of such devices to pay toll in the highways).
According to Microsoft’s spokesperson, when that house was created they used a mid-range imagination – ten years term – and almost commercially available devices. However, one limitation was how to print bar codes or QR codes in limited or minuscule spaces, and where to install readers that enable the information stored in such codes. The first one has been successfully overcame by scientists with the so-called “passive RFID ink” and the second one is almost a reality. Scientists are aiming to replace all incandescent and fluorescent lights for LEDs, which having ten thousand times more capacity than radio waves to transmit information will become the source of light installed everywhere capable to read and transmit huge amount of data.
I am very excited because I now know that what engineers and scientists imagined in Redmond, WA soon will be part of our daily life. Twenty years ago, cellphones were sci-fi and now they are real and have amazing capabilities (smartphones). I can imagine now how amazing will be my own Jetsons-like house in five years from now.
There is a brighter future around the corner, don’t miss this video