Fridges talk to washing machines at high-tech fair

Mar 03, 2010
A woman walks past an advertising poster at the world's biggest high-tech fair, the CeBIT in the northern German city of Hanover. A fridge that talks to your washing machine and a television that instructs your dishwasher. It's all possible at CeBIT, the world's top high-tech fair.

A fridge that talks to your washing machine and a television that instructs your dishwasher. It's all possible at CeBIT, the world's top high-tech fair.

But the question is: what's the point?

"Well, for example, you could be sitting on your sofa in your living room and you want to turn on your washing machine," said Christian Prause, a developer of the yet-to-be finalised "Hydra" software.

"If your is equipped with our technology, you can send a message to the washing machine to turn itself on."

"And if for whatever reason it doesn't work, you can ask your fridge to transmit the order to the ," he added.

Prause said vacationers too need not panic if they realise they leave home in haste.

"Imagine you are 200 kilometres (130 miles) away, on holiday, and you realised you have forgotten to close your curtains."

Not to worry. You can send a quick text message to your curtain . If that doesn't work, you can always get your or your radio to lend a hand.

The fruit of four years of research by 10 different partners, including the German Fraunhofer Institute, the Hydra project is financially supported by the European Union.

Hydra "saves you time, energy and hassle," Prause insisted. With a bit of luck, "such a system could perhaps eventually appear in the shops."

Explore further: Neuroscientist's idea wins new-toy award

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

As the refrigerator said to the hi-fi...

Jan 04, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- Networked sensors and devices have huge potential but how can we ensure that they can all talk to each other? The answer, according to a European consortium, is to link them seamlessly through a common 'middleware'.

Survey: Hand washing habits lacking

Aug 29, 2006

A survey by the Wayne, N.J., based Lysol Hygiene Council has suggested that 61 percent of U.S. residents lack proper hand washing habits.

Making it easier to save energy

Jan 15, 2010

Fraunhofer scientists are developing programs that help show at a glance how much energy devices are consuming. At the GSMA Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the researchers will be showing how a cell phone can help save ...

Goodbye to batteries and power sockets

Jun 03, 2008

A broken cable or a soiled connector? If a machine in a factory goes on strike, it could be for any of a thousand reasons. Self-sufficient sensors that provide their own power supply will soon make these machines ...

Recommended for you

Patent talk: Google sharpens contact lens vision

5 hours ago

(Phys.org) —A report from Patent Bolt brings us one step closer to what Google may have in mind in developing smart contact lenses. According to the discussion Google is interested in the concept of contact ...

Neuroscientist's idea wins new-toy award

Apr 15, 2014

When he was a child, Robijanto Soetedjo used to play with his electrically powered toys for a while and then, when he got bored, take them apart - much to the consternation of his parents.

Land Rover demos invisible bonnet / car hood (w/ video)

Apr 14, 2014

(Phys.org) —Land Rover has released a video demonstrating a part of its Discover Vision Concept—the invisible "bonnet" or as it's known in the U.S. the "hood" of the car. It's a concept the automaker ...

Visions of 1964 World's Fair didn't all come true

Apr 12, 2014

Video phone calls? Yeah, we do that. Asking computers for information? Sure, several times a day. Colonies on the moon and jet packs as a mode of everyday transportation. OK, maybe not.

User comments : 3

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

fixer
not rated yet Mar 03, 2010
It must be a slow news week.

How about a GPS that talks to my cruise control?
No? perhaps a pantry cupboard that talks to the oven.

Maybe I should talk to someone and get my life back!

Let's keep science sensible.
robz
not rated yet Mar 04, 2010
I'd guess this stuff is good for implementation in the SmartGrid.

Another excuse for being lazy in this article tho, shame.
physpuppy
not rated yet Mar 04, 2010
I love this example:

"Well, for example, you could be sitting on your sofa in your living room and you want to turn on your washing machine,"


"Honey I keep turning on the washing machine but my clothes aren't getting any cleaner!!"

"Maybe you need to get up and put your clothes into the washer first, duh"

Of course, one could imagine a hamper-chute system which, upon command, deposits the dirty clothes into the washer (maybe a robot arm to help stuff the clothes in and pick up the socks that fell to the floor.

Now you need to dry the clothes.

It's a start I suppose.

Of course, the invention in the article will not save us from this:

http://www.gocomi...0/02/25/

Now if we could all learn to talk to each other...

More news stories

Floating nuclear plants could ride out tsunamis

When an earthquake and tsunami struck the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant complex in 2011, neither the quake nor the inundation caused the ensuing contamination. Rather, it was the aftereffects—specifically, ...

Unlocking secrets of new solar material

(Phys.org) —A new solar material that has the same crystal structure as a mineral first found in the Ural Mountains in 1839 is shooting up the efficiency charts faster than almost anything researchers have ...