The Home Dashboard Concept by Intel is an automation system for your home allowing you to reference information on many electronic devices around your home and keep a close eye on your energy usage. Designed to be energy efficient itself, it aims to help cut down the energy usage of a household by compiling information from the devices connected to it and from sources such as weather reports to make sure everything is working at optimum efficiency.
The Home Dashboard Concept uses Intels Atom processor and an OLED screen. OLEDs (Organic Light Emitting Diode) may not give off as much light as traditional LEDs but they have been found to have many advantages over LCDs (Liquid Crystal Displays) as a display screen. This is because they do not require a backlight to function meaning that they can show more vivid depth to dark colours and blacks, they use a lot less energy to run and can be made into much thinner and lighter displays. The OLED screen coupled with the Atom processor, which was designed to run on ultra low voltage, means the device itself is energy efficient to run.
This Home Dashboard uses ZigBee home area networking to connect with electrical ’smart’ devices and appliances that have been connected to a ZigBee socket. Many different devices and appliances can then send information on their energy usage to the dashboard and it can use this in conjunction with other information to operate these devices in an energy efficient manner. For example you can use the dashboard to turn off a device that is not currently needed, or with a connection to a thermostat the dashboard can lower energy usage by adapting the settings with regards to the weather forecast, current energy prices and the patterns of usage it has stored for the household.
This Home Dashboard Concept should be able to be connected to many other devices around the home, such as security systems and even baby monitors, to make it a central point of a household where all information about that house is gathered. The dashboard can be accessed externally by a user from the internet allowing control of devices, thermostat and security systems even when on holiday.
By keeping a track on the different devices it can highlight out problem areas, which devices could be more energy efficient and offer more energy efficient replacements. By being more aware of the energy consumption of the household and all its devices and appliances you can reduce your energy bills by taking a more active control over your energy usage.