Is it possible to create a home environment that is aware of its occupants whereabouts and activities?
If we build such a home, how can it provide services to its residents that enhance their quality of life or help them to maintain independence as they age? The Aware Home Research Initiative (AHRI) is an interdisciplinary research endeavor at Georgia Tech aimed at addressing the fundamental technical, design, and social challenges presented by such questions.
The Aware Home Research Initiative at Georgia Institute of Technology is devoted to the multidisciplinary exploration of emerging technologies adn services based in the home. Starting in 1988, our collection of faculty and students has created a unique research facility that allows us to simulate and evaluate user experiences with off-the-shelf and state-of-the-art technologies. With speciifc expertise in health, education, entertainment and usable security, we are able to apply our research to problems of significant social and economic impact.
New technologies show great promise when applied to the home domain. The opportunities are vast, ranging from new modes of entertainment, services to simplify the management of the home and its myriad activities, and much-needed assistance for individuals at risk and the busy family members who care for them.
Home entertainment is important to help us enjoy our leisure time. We are interested in developingg new ways to simplify the control of a complex array of digital entertainment items and to creat new ways to capture the meaning ful moments of everyday life and share them with others now and well into the future. As we introduce more technologies into the home, we do not want to change the important characteristic of home life; to relax and enjoy family events. Currently, the influx of technology into the home has produced an increased burden to manage that infrastructure and guard against new security threats. by considering the importance of the human experience in managing technology and maintaining control and privacy, we are showing how a state-of-the-art experience can also be an enjoyable one.
Many otherwise busy adults are sandwiched between generations of older and younger relations that rely on them for care. Many baby boomers take responsibility to help an aging parent retain an independent life in his or her own home, rather than moving to an institutional facility. Others are assisting a developmentally delayed child or grandchild grow into an independent life in his or her own hoem, rather than moving to an institutional facility. Others are assisting a developmentally delayed child or grandchild grow into an independent and functional lifestyle. Still others may help a sibling cope with a chronic health condition. Whatever the situation, there are many opportunities for home technologies to support the important communication and coordination tasks a network of formal and informal caregivers. the same technologies that revolutionized and “flattened” the workplace can now make life easier in the home.