RFID powers ubiquitous computing

August 04, 2004

Chris Heathcote is blogging from the DIS 2004 conference on Designing Interactive Systems. One of the bits that caught my interest was his notes from a presentation of Samsung's Smart Home experiments: (extracts below, his complete notes here):

Gate Reminder
Samsung Electronics

Reminds user of objects they should take when going outside
Reminds users of messages they should be aware of before leaving
Installed at the front door

Based on Smart Home project from 2002

scenarios - books you borrowed from a friend, DVD rentals you should return, take out garbage on a particular day, forgot to buy bread even they passed it several times

Don Norman - Signal + message

but, should be signal + message + context
the right moment (person/time/place/atmosphere)
(don't remind about bread when in a meeting at 3pm)

two types of contextual-aware reminder:
mobile reminder - carried by a user
ubiquitous reminder - installed into your surroundings

front door - right place
before going outside - right time
user identification - right person

3 common reminding methods - post-it on a door, place the item by the door, ask someone to remind you

potential needs -
missing objects
weather information
regular reminding
writing reminders from outside

RFID used, tags attached to objects (medium-range type - 1m)

User detection - motion detector, door sensor, face identifier, speaker identifier, RFID again

Chris; I hope we'll get more meat on these keywords when you return. Thanks for sharing!

Posted by andersja


I’m looking for a consumer RFID solution. I just installed a Pluto Home (plutohome.com) smarthome/media server system. It has a ‘follow-me’ feature where when you enter a room, your Bluetooth mobile phone turns into a remote control for the stuff in that room, and your preferences will follow you around the house. For example, each family member’s music, lighting, etc., follows them.

The only problem is it requires a Bluetooth detector in each room (which for now still means putting in a pc), and the recognition isn’t instant—it can take 10 seconds or so for the phone to be recognized before your media and other stuff comes on in that room. I’m pretty technically inclined and would like to put some readers around the house and in the driveway so I can have follow-me in every room, and have stuff happen automatically when I approach in my car. It looks trivial to do—Pluto already has all the code to do it, I just need to create a device that fires the same events—a couple hours work. Do you have any ideas where I can get RFID cards/readers with a standard RS232/USB interface?

Posted by: mark_tar_mark at August 3, 2005 11:37 AM
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