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The Press

What is the “Smart house”?

Press-Release (Spring 2014)

Vinogradov A.S. Tech executive of the Perao Company
Mihailik A.V. General executive of the Perao Company, part of the N.P. “AVOK” “Smart Buildings and System of informational management”

Well, for a pretty long time there are new and fancy names everywhere, such as Smart House, and Intellectual building etc. Participants of the engineer systems sales, market’s players are using such terms widely pursuing in most cases just their marketing goals. Since the strict definition of the Smart House does not exist, and there are no list for the subsystems which should be having a minimal system to be Smart, everyone understands it by his or her own, and there is a field for the misunderstandings. If the definitions of House, home or building are obvious, definition of it’s IQ, smartness, or wisdom is covered by fog.

Despite of great misunderstandings, there are some common features included in the definition. The smart system should have a computer that controls all engineer appliance in house, based on the special program algorithm, data from multiple sensors, counters, which are connected to watch with the calendar and complicated user interface.

In this article we will equal intellect and wisdom. From Wikipedia sources we know that wisdom is an ability to adapt in new situations, ability to learn based on the experience, understanding and usage of abstracts concepts, this is the usage of the knowledge having a goal to manage the environment. This is a general ability to know and to find a way out of complications, which combines ability to understand, feel, ability to interact with reality, memory, imagination, emotion, ability to think and also it includes communicative skills.

Now, when we know what does the intellect and wisdom are, we need figure out if there is a way to consider the system under the computer management a clever system, or it is just an automated machine, with the embedded multilevel algorithms of management and control. Is there ability on this smart house machine to understand, feel and understand itself, express and feel emotions?

To find answer on such question there is a need to make a conscious experiment, and in experimental purposes, to find a condition where the smart house will face situation which is dangerous for its consistency. This problem should be unpredictable, unforeseen by any safe mode profile. For the system which has an artificial intelligence this situation would mean full or partial loss of ability to work or functioning. At the same time, system would not be able to understand a problem as an event. System with an intelligence, will act as if it a mammal, child or even grown up human being. Thus, it will redirect all resources to identify and solve the issue which puts system in danger, not only the computing power, but energy sources, and moreover real artificial intelligence will use the experience accumulated in the past and will need to experience emotions in this case, and ask neighbor systems for help. There is an only one conclusion coming up, we do not know such systems, and moreover, we fear them.

Beside the glaring absurdity of the term “Smart House” “Smart washing machine”, or “smart coffee machine”, “Smart steam” and others, a lot of market players use this terms widely. The consumers are easy going usually, and they are glad to buy smart products paying much more than rate for the non-smart analogues. This is actually the vivid example of ignorance which widens the range of goods, and significantly raises prices. Unfortunately, engineer companies, installers or design teams could not benefit out of such easy money. Instead of improvement in science and technological base, services quality, what we see on the market is just squeezing the money out of it, giving false and deceitful description and presentation of the products. Such dishonest behavior significantly slower the honest players and field generally. Quite often, even specialists provoke and misdirect their customers. This disappoints all market participants.

Buying a Smart System, the consumer expects from the system partner like, or friend-like behavior and has high expectations about the full capacity of the system to interact with the people, also the expectation of predictability and consistency, adequacy of an appliance reaction. Thus, each action of the system is the result of the program execution, for each event, there is a special algorithm of actions. In Smart systems, any deviations from the algorithm and embedded reactions are program mistakes, or equipment defects. Thus, usually the program is developed from the very beginning and all programs are sharpened to customer’s expectations, needs, and Technical task delivered to a developer’s team. These are the reasons why and interaction between the developers and final customers is very important, the programming quality etc, these are factors which make the user experience really good. For our team, main thing is a total customer satisfaction; this is the reason why we constantly perform research studies, constantly practice activity and improvement of algorithms and equipment. We know from our practice that the customer’s satisfaction is a result of hard engineer decisions, and long work of talented and enthusiastic engineers aimed to essentially improve the system. Intelligence, Smartness, quickness in decision making does not applicable to machines, these merits are applicable only to the live beings. Intention to earn extra money and to sell more equipment makes the sales people to add magic, specific features to the appliance they are trading, even in some cases they add therapeutic features to the appliances they sell. Truly farsighted and clever customer, will ask the engineers, who know and constantly use and make new decisions, who perform research, and will avoid the fancy signboards with the unbelievable promises, and beautiful, but having nothing under it lie, specially made for their customers.

There is a need to stop this practice of total deception, and to start correct information on the customers. There is a need to name complex engineering systems, not smart but automotive and automatic. Probably, to find a correct name, even complex name, or give a new name to such systems in a correct way.

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