automation

Microsoft unveils on{x} automation app for Android

Microsoft unveils on{x} automation app for Android

Microsoft has just introduced an exciting mobile automation platform called on{x}, which will be available only on Android smartphones initially, before even the company's own Windows Phones. The tool, consisting of a website and app, allows users to set automated tasks and reminders through the use of various scripts or "recipes."

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Microsoft testing home-automation with HomeOS

Microsoft testing home-automation with HomeOS

Sometimes companies like to give us a nice little peek behind the curtain to show us what they’re working on, and this time it's Microsoft's turn. The company has published a white paper on its Research site detailing its method of home automation using HomeOS. Devices like smartphones, laptops, lights, and air conditioners would be treated as individual peripherals connected to a centralized gateway.

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Open Education Solutions study finds computers grade essays like humans

Open Education Solutions study finds computers grade essays like humans

If you or someone in your life is getting ready to take a standardized test that includes writing an essay, the way that test is scored may soon be antiquated. Instead of having a set of human eyes comb over thousands upon thousands of essays every year, it could soon be that the heart and soul you pour out into that perfectly printed essay paper will be spit in and spit out of a machine in a matter of seconds (or even shorter).

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Neato XV-21 autonomous cleaning robot released

Neato XV-21 autonomous cleaning robot released

The next big thing in robot cleaners have arrived, and it comes from Neato Robotics, a group known for their ability to create strange and wonderful devices galore. This device is an automatic vacuum cleaner made specifically for pet owners as well as allergy sufferers. This robot has a bristled brush to pick up pet hair, dander, and fibers across any floor type you have to throw at it. This newest model has increased airflow and suction over past models, three times the fine dust that the company's standard model was able to pick up in fact, all of this due to its updated filter.

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NKK Switches OLED Rocker home-automation control

NKK Switches OLED Rocker home-automation control

NKK Switches have announced a new control that integrates a compact 96 x 64 OLED display. The OLED Rocker has a 0.92-inch monochrome OLED panel with broad 180-degree viewing angles, and offers both up/down navigation as well as push-enter functionality.

The control joins NKK Switches' existing display-control range, which already features a color-OLED button.  However that control is only a push-button, and requires a far deeper panel mount.

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iHouse SmartFaucet with face recognition & email

iHouse SmartFaucet with face recognition & email

We're told that water and electronics don't mix, but word obviously hasn't made it to iHouse.  The company has been demonstrating their SmartFaucet, a touchscreen-enabled tap that also includes a camera for face-recognition.  If you've ever wanted to check your email and calendar from your bathroom sink, here's the faucet for you.

Video demo after the cut

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Cellphone WAP-controlled DIY home automation project

Cellphone WAP-controlled DIY home automation project

Last month's remote control power outlet piggybacked onto a Linksys NSLU2; this month, we're still all about remotely triggering power from a web browser or cellphone with WAP browser, but the system is built from scratch.  Josh Harle started with a PIC16F84, a cheap programmable chip, which links up to an always-on home server that has a custom Java app doling out commands to eight different AC switches.

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