Making Your Home a Smart Home

smart home

Smart Home Technology – Make Your More Intelligent

Over 60% of the people in the generation dubbed baby boomer shy away from selling their homes as they meet the needs of their families. Down the line, their situation tends to become tricky as it becomes harder to navigate through the house when they age.

Items that previously brought comfort become hazards, like the throw rugs and door handles may tend to make hands ache and trip their feet. Many other homeowners relate to this problems and take action to curb them. More than half of the senior Houzz users make home renovations so that they don’t have to move but can age gracefully in their own home.

Here is a list suggesting projects to help you create a safer and more convenient home for everyone irrespective of their age so that you can age in place.

Smart Home – The Exterior

Many homes have arty door handles, an intricate porch and a doorstep which may be very appealing but can be hard for a person with arthritis to use. These problems can be solved using these two designs.

  1. Replace door handles with levers, levers are generally easier to use as all you need is to pull down for the door to open
  2. Set up a security system. A good security system will respond to medical alert devices in addition to criminal activities. The homeowners’ wellbeing and their security from criminals are taken care of.

Smart Home – The Garage

Adjustment to the garage is important especially if the homeowner is using a wheelchair. Make sure that the garage is easily accessible and also safe. Here are projects to help you improve the accessibility and safety of your garage.

  1. Build a slope. Stairs are difficult to use, replacing them with a ramp will ensure more access and safety.
  2. Organize the garage. Falls and trips can result from having items lying everywhere on the floor, organize the garage by throwing out items you no longer need, storing the other items in the appropriate places or donating them to create a garage that is easy to operate in.
  3. Set up a smart garage door opener, a smart garage door opener automatically closes the door after a set amount of time this increases security and safety.

Smart Home – The Hallways

Standard hallways often have dim lights and odd corners which are not favourable for wheelchairs and walkers to get around this problem the following renovations are important.

  1. Widen the hallways and doors this is to provide enough space for a wheelchair to pass through efficiently.
  2. Install smart lighting, this is deemed easier to operate than the flip switches thus will increase convenience safety and comfort.
  3. Using smart motion sensors this can be combined with the smart lighting such that they respond to movements accordingly.

Smart Home – The Living Area

The living area is most likely where you spend most of your time, the following renovations will ensure that the place offers all the comfort and safety you need.

  1. Get rids of rugs. Reorganize the living room paying more attention to floor rugs and any other loose items that can be a trip hazard.
  2. Install a smart thermostat.  Being either too cold or too hot can be a real cause of discomfort, a smart thermostat adapts to your preferences, you will be able to maintain the just right temperatures ensuring your comfort.
  3. Use a voice-activated assistant, this smart home device will respond to your voice helping you control all other products in your smart home at your convenience. You may buy a Google Home, Apple Home Pod or the Amazon Echo depending on your preferences.

Smart Home – The Kitchen Area

The kitchen could be the place you once had fun creating all sorts of culinary delights but this can change once your mobility becomes a challenge, you can curb this problem by using the home technologies and upgrades below.

  1. Make the space functional, install shallow sinks, deep drawers and pullout pantries make sure the spices and the other kitchen appliances are placed where they can be reached.
  2. Put in place a smart smoke detector, this is really useful as it will contact the emergency services in case of an alarm ensuring home safety.
  3. A smart refrigerator, this will help you keep a grocery list also order groceries from the store for you, this will ensure that you have all the grocery you need.

Smart Home – The Bathroom

The bathroom poses many dangers, slippery floors being on top of the list, the following renovation strategies will help you alleviate these dangers.

  1. Change the taps.  Normal taps can be hard to use and even can lead to accidents such as burns, to take care of this problem install a lever tap which is easy to use.
  2. Remodel facilities in the bathroom like the bathtub and shower which can pose danger to people of any age but especially those with mobility problems. Walk-in tubs and showers can help curb these dangers.
  3. Set up slip resistant flooring, these kinds of floors will ensure that slips that would result in falls do not happen to ensure safety and comfort.

Smart Home – The Bedroom

Renovations explained in other areas of the home will also apply to the bedroom such as the use of motion sensors and smart lighting, here are more ideas to improve the bedrooms comfort and safety.

  1. Buy an appropriate bed, normal beds may prove hard for older people to get in out of, buy a bed that is not too low to the ground which will alleviate the inconvenience and danger a typical bed may pose.
  2. Set up the bedroom on the ground floor if the house is two story, this will reduce the struggle of climbing up and down the stairs.
  3. Set up a stair lift, a stair lift will ensure convenience, accessibility, and safety in your home.

Make your home comfy, secure, safe and appropriate to age in using the listed checklist.

Top 5 Ways Technology Can Ease Your Gardening Tasks

What Are The Best Ways To Use Technology To Make Gardening Easier?

Today, technology can be married with any field. For instance, businesses today can sell and ship products to customers’ worldwide right from their headquarters while investors and traders can trade or invest in any financial instrument right from the comfort of their homes using smartphones or PCs.

With that in mind, why can’t we marry technology with gardening? Do you have to continue suffering from lower back pain just because you love tending to your garden?

Did you know technology can make your work easier when it comes to gardening?

Imagine having a bunch of automated systems performing different gardening tasks for you. Not only will you have additional time to complete your hobbies but more time to spend with your family and even relax.

So, how can you marry technology with gardening?

Here are top 5 technologies that you can incorporate into your garden and make your life easier.

#1. Automated sprinkler system

When you plant your herbs and veggies, watering them becomes a daily chore. There are times you will be required to water them once while on other occasions, twice a day. During this time, you will be forced to make several trips between the source of water and your garden. As a result, you will be carrying a watering can full of water.
Making several trips in a day is not easy. When you factor in other chores that you are supposed to complete, then by the end of the day, you will be so tired. To make your work easier, invest in an automated sprinkler system.

For an easy to use automated sprinkler system, you can opt for Rainbird or you can opt for a DIY version which allows you to customize the system to your needs.

#2. Distinguishing healthy plants from sickly ones

As said earlier, gardening is a fun hobby. Not only do you get to plant beautiful flowers but herbs and veggies too. To ensure that you have a bumper harvest, a lot of care must be provided to the plants. Not only are you required to water the plants but to weed and ensure they grow to be healthy.

So, how do gardeners check how healthy their plants are? A vast majority of people will check for discolouration or wilt. Others will check for abnormal tissue and cracks while other will check for stunted growth and brown spots on the leaves.

Thanks to technology, you can now determine the health of your plant using a photosynthesis camera. All you need is to replace the infrared filter on your camera with a blue filter. Once you capture the images, upload them to infragram.org for processing. If the plants are soaking less light, then they are not healthy and so, they need more care.

#3. Shoo birds and pests with drone technology

Are birds feeding on your plants? Are foxes damaging your hard work? Don’t have the time to shoo them yourself or hire someone to do so? Why not invest in a bird control drone.

Designed to chase away birds and foxes, the drone comes with fully autonomous flight and remote controlled features available with or without a camera. With this technology, you can combine sight, sound and threaten physical presence to prevent birds and other pests from causing harm to your garden.

While some models are available in the traditional drone design, newer models are shaped to look like popular birds of prey, for instance, the Bald Eagle or Falcon. The reason for this design is to leverage the fear of other birds to predatory birds.

#4. Checking your plant vitals

Now that you have learned how to use a blue filter with your digital camera to determine the health of your plants, it’s time to learn how to check your garden vitals using technology. The product is called the Growerbot kit.

It is composed of a network of probes designed to measure soil moisture level, humidity, sunlight and air temperature. Basically, the sensors work by detecting the decline of certain conditions needed for the optimum growth of the plants.

For instance, if the sensors detect that the garden bed is dry since they are connected to your automatic sprinkler system, they will activate it and your plants will be watered while you are away.

#5. Growing your herbs and veggies without dirt

Today, you can grow your garden using hydroponics system which eliminates the need for dirt and expansive gardening space. As a result, the hydroponic system has been found to be suitable for use in areas where homeowners, who love gardening, lack space.

One of the best products that will surely work for you is the Fizzy Farm Indoor Hydroponic system. It is easy to use and designed for non-vining fruits and vegetables. As a state of the art hydroponic system, you can use it to grow lettuce, kales, basil, strawberries, thyme and chives among others.

In addition, it can be used indoors thus turning the area into a stunning garden.

Final Thoughts On Gardening Automation

There you have it. Top 5 ways where technology is married to gardening thus making it easier for the homeowner to grow fruits, vegetables and herbs. Not only will these modern solutions provide you with stats about the health of your plants and garden but they will ensure your plants get to grow by keeping pests away. In the end, you will have a bumper harvest.

Transform Your Garden With These 5 Low Budget Garden Projects

5 Low Budget – High impact Garden Projects

For all the projects, results can be achieved without breaking the bank.

  1. Shape Up Your Outdoor Garden SpaceGarden lawn

This is one of the easiest and cheapest ways of garden transformation. It requires you to cut the lawn into a shape that is clearly defined, like a square, circle or oblong. Use a string to mark it and use a spade to clear away the excess grass. This is an easy task that should only take your afternoon. Best of all, it costs absolutely nothing.

 

  1. Plant Up Your Garden – Without Spending A Fortune

Buying perennials that can be divided are the most effective way to fill flowerbeds with beautiful plants. It is not as advanced as it sounds; it works with clump-forming perennials like astrantia, hardy geraniums and geums. Just tip the pot’s plant out and pull it apart in two or three bits, each with some stalks and roots. Dig a hole then plant each part of your flowerbed. In a year, after they have grown and spread, you can dig them up and pull them apart to increase your plants. The display will become evidently beautiful in a few years. The cost is very little since six geranium plants can get an average sized garden going well.

 

  1. Look Up – Create A Natural Garden Canopy

You can improve the look of a garden with trees of a relatively considerate size and longevity for a low price. Most ideal are small sized trees like Amelanchier lamarckii, crab apple, June berry or an ornamental cherry like Punus × incam ‘Okame’. Three are enough for an average sized garden.

  1. Smarten Up – Use Natural Hardscaping to Create Ordergarden paths

To smarten paths and patios, gravel is much more affordable than paving. Laying it in place requires one to:

  • Mark out the area
  • Clear the path of loose soil and grass
  • Use a permeable membrane on the ground to stop weeds from coming through
  • Spread gravel over the membrane layer

Go for a 2.5 depth. Pale gravel, e.g., Honey Stone is a better choice because it will go well with your lawn and planting. A large bag of gravel covers about 20 sq. Meters.

  1. Light up – Use Outdoor Lighting To Enchant Your Gardengarden lighting

Outdoor fairy lights are simple, cheap and quick to bring a fantastic glow to the patio and beyond. They can be purchased online all year round. You can use shrub or tree branches to arrange them, attach them to furniture and fences, use ground stuck canes to suspend them. You can ran them using a plug from inside the house. An electrician is not necessary.