Housing Tech Conference 2023
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A few weeks ago I threw out a challenge to my colleagues at TSG to think about what they’d like technology to do for them in their every day lives.
What got me thinking about it was the current hype in the technology arena around ‘wearables’ – after all, there’s always something that’s going to be the ‘next big thing’.
At first sight gadgets like Google Glass look a bit gimmicky! And it’s only when you start to think about how they might apply to our daily lives that their value becomes apparent.
Microsoft have been working for a couple of years on a technology that could allow blind people to see – and although it’s apparently only a research project, it gives an insight into what might be possible and how life changing technology can be.
My own ‘tech dream’ is perhaps a little more frivolous but it would certainly make a big difference.
As a former competitive swimmer, I get my rest and relaxation from hammering out lengths in the swimming pool but I’d love something to help cut through the boredom.
If only I could get a set of Google goggles – rather than glasses – that would allow me to watch my favourite movies, and maybe the odd documentary. Obviously, they’d need to sound a warning at the end of each length, otherwise it could prove painful!
One of my colleagues suggested that, until someone invents these goggles, I should invest in a waterproof MP3 player – I had no idea they even existed!
From the response I got to my challenge, there were a couple of ‘tech dreams’ that stood out.
The first was a technology that would help to capture family memories – all of those important moments big and small that shape our lives. More than just a photo album but something that works more like a rewind button. That really struck a chord with me.
Every moment I spend with my wonderful grandson is so precious but you don’t always appreciate their significance at the time and I’ve no doubt that many will drift into history.
Another idea that stood out was an app that automatically records business mileage and logs it into the TSG expenses system. It was put forward by one of our SharePoint experts – maybe there’s an opportunity there? Could we link up one of the many apps that record running or cycle training using GPS and download the data into our own SharePoint system
I suspect the suggestion made by our R & D director Mat Peck might be the start of a business case for a new TSG ‘Gadgets’ department.
He’d like something inconspicuous to wear – a ring or a watch – that listens to everything he says and triggers on the words “I must remember to…”. It would then add whatever he says next to a to-do list – like Evernote or OneNote – that follows him around everywhere.
As he points out, it’s all perfectly possible with current tech but just needs perfecting, miniaturising and marketing properly.
I have to admit that even though I’m not a techie, I’m fascinated by the idea that technology is quite literally everywhere. It’s almost impossible to avoid whether we like it or not.
Is that a good thing? Or could it be just a bit scary?
Top of a recently compiled list of The 21 Coolest ‘Internet of Things’ Gadgets You Will Want Today, is Sen.se Mother, which uses small sensors known as motion cookies to monitor and report on every detail of your family’s movements and daily activities.
It allows you to set alerts so that you know stuff like when the kids are home from school and the theory is that everyone in the family feels secure. Or is it just a bit creepy to think that wherever you go, Big Mother is watching!
So what would love you technology to do for you? In work or your personal life? Let us know – we’d love to hear from you.
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