Summary of “I live with Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri. Here’s which you should pick.”

Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant also want to adjust the thermostat, fill your picture frame or even microwave your popcorn.
He loves the Google Assistant on his Android phone, so selecting his tribe should be easy, right? Hardly: He wanted to put Sonos speakers all around the house, but they take voice commands directly via Alexa.
They’re not all equally skilled at understanding accents – Southerners are misunderstood more with Google and Midwesterners with Alexa.
The good: Google Assistant comes the closest to having a conversation with an actual human helper.
On the new Home Hub device with a screen, Assistant curates a highlights-only show from your Google Photos collection.
While Android phone owners are more likely to use lots of Assistant-friendly Google services, the Assistant doesn’t particularly care what kind of phone you use – its simple companion apps work on iOS and Android.
Google is neck and neck with Alexa on many of the nuances: Night mode reduces the volume of answers at night, and it can even require Junior to say “Pretty please.”
Like Alexa, Google Assistant keeps a recording of all your queries – every time you ask it to turn off the lights.

The orginal article.

Summary of “5 Ways Smart People Sabotage Their Success”

Smart people sometimes devalue other skills, like relationship building, and over-concentrate on intellect.
Very smart people sometimes see their success as inevitable because of their intellect, and don’t see other skills as important.
Smart people also sometimes find it difficult to delegate because of a sense they can do a task better This is especially likely for those who have a perfectionist streak.
Smart people often attach a lot of their self-esteem to being smart, which can decrease their resilience and lead to avoidance.
Solution: Take an objective view of the benefits of working with people who are, in some respects, smarter than you.
If you’re surrounding yourself with smart people, you’re doing something right.
Smart people sometimes see in-depth thinking and reflection as the solution to every problem.
Bright people are accustomed to succeeding through their thinking skills, but can sometimes overlook when a different approach would be more beneficial.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Don’t Call Kids ‘Smart'”

“You can tell kids that they’ve done something fantastic, but don’t label them as smart.”
The idea of a fixed mindset, in which people are smart or not smart, stands in contrast to a growth mindset, in which people become intelligent and knowledgeable through practice.
The subtleties of the ways in which we praise kids are related to the mindsets those kids develop.
The group most damaged by fixed-mindset thinking is high-achieving girls, Boaler argues, because it’s girls who are told by society that they probably won’t be as good as boys at math and science.
Speaking of percentages, math is a good example of the importance of avoiding the fixed mindset.
The idea of a “Math person” or a math gene is a primary reason for so much math nihilism, math failure, and “Math trauma,” as Boaler called it on Monday.
When kids get the idea that they “Aren’t math people,” they start a downward trajectory, and their career options shrink immediately and substantially.
There is also the common idea of a wall in math: People learn math until they hit a wall where they just can’t keep up.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Alea Air announces a smart, energy-efficient HVAC system”

Unlike typical HVAC systems, which turn on in every room of your house even if you just want to cool down your bedroom, Alea Air’s smart vents close in rooms where you don’t want to direct the air flow, targeting only the rooms you do want to cool.
As a result, Farzaneh estimates that Alea Air will be able to lower users’ energy expenses by at least 20%. Tackling such an unsexy problem like HVAC air flow isn’t Silicon Valley’s usual approach to the smart home.
At first glance, Alea Air seems similar to smart thermostats like Nest, but Farzaneh says that while smart thermostats focus on making it easier to program what temperature you want your house to be, they don’t control air flow.
Alea Air is like installing a separate Nest in every single room of your house that only controls one vent of your HVAC system.
Alea Air can work with a product like Nest, where Nest is the programmable on-off switch, and Alea gives users more granular control over where air flows in their house.
Alea Air also has a rechargeable battery that’s powered with thermoelectric energy-harvesting, which uses the difference in temperature between the duct’s hot or cold air and the room’s ambient air to generate electricity.
While users can hire professionals to install Alea when they’re renovating their home the system was designed to be entirely DIY. Because all the sensors are built into each vent, homeowners can simply lift out their old vents and slot the Alea Air vents right into the floor.
Will customers understand the distinction between a smart vent and a smart thermostat? Does Alea stand a chance if more established smart home companies with better name recognition decide to put out a similar product? It’s too soon to tell.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The future of the Home of the Future”

It’s perhaps best then to think of today’s smart home as a remote-controlled home.
You can tell your smart assistant “Good night” and it can lock the doors, make sure your garage door is closed, set your thermostat to its overnight setting, and turn off all the lights in the home.
In order to get to that level of smart, the smart home needs two things: lots of data and better interoperability between devices.
Just like your smartphone is a lot smarter because of all the data it has access to, the smart home will be a lot smarter when it has more data to work with too.
If you were to set up your home with the products we installed in the Home of the Future, you would have no fewer than half a dozen different apps and logins to manage them all.
Our Home of the Future has a similar central hub that was installed by a professional integrator and acts as a connection point for many of the smart home devices installed.
Even with all of our careful planning and built-from-the-ground-up approach, there are products in our Home of the Future that don’t integrate with the central hub and are largely just standalone devices.
So as I think about the future of the home of the future, that’s what I’m looking forward to: a home that feels as smart as its smart home name implies.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Amazon Echo is losing smart speaker market share to Google Home. Here’s why.”

Google Home devices are rapidly catching up to Amazon Echo devices in worldwide sales, and may have already surpassed them.
China is the fastest-growing market for smart speakers, and neither Amazon nor Google is a significant player there.
As recently as a year ago, Amazon single-handedly controlled the global smart speaker industry, with a market share upward of 75 percent, according to estimates from two of the leading market watchers, Strategy Analytics and Canalys, based in Singapore.
It makes sense that Amazon was crushing the competition, because there wasn’t much competition yet: Google had just launched the Home in late 2016, and Apple’s HomePod was not yet on the market.
The firm projects Google’s smart speaker sales to surpass Amazon’s by 2020, said Bill Ablondi, director of smart home strategies.
It found that 62 percent of U.S. smart speaker owners had an Amazon Echo, while 27 percent had a Google Home, as of May. That methodology favors Amazon by counting devices purchased in the past.
On top of that, it makes it very easy to buy things on Amazon, and plays nicely with other Alexa devices like the Fire TV. Purchase a Google Home, on the other hand, and it will fit right in with Chromecast, YouTube, your Gmail and Google Calendar, and the Google Assistant on your Android device.
Correction, Aug. 27, 2018: This article originally mislabeled two columns in a chart titled, “Global Smart Speaker Market by Vendor: Q2 2018.” The third and fourth columns should have been labeled “Q2 ’17 Shipments” and “Q2 ’17 Market Share,” not “Q2 ’18 Shipments” and “Q2 ’18 Market Share.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Reality Ecosystem: What AR/VR/XR needs to go big – TechCrunch”

Mobile AR has shown what is possible, with Pokémon GO, Snapchat and soon Google Maps/Lens again standouts.
Critical use cases for mobile AR are beginning to emerge, with perhaps the first being Google’s Maps/Lens combination revealed at Google I/O 2018.
It solves a universal problem when you come out of Embarcadero Station and are told to go south – but where’s south? Google combined computer vision with mobile AR to show you exactly where to go, and even gave you a cute fox to lead you there.
Houzz proved mobile AR apps can drive an extraordinary 11x sales uplift.
Current mobile leaders could determine how mobile AR evolves even more than startup insurgents.
It’s too early to tell with smart glasses again, but their critical use cases might need to be more than ports from breakout mobile AR successes.
It could become a key enabler for the Reality Ecosystem for both mobile AR and smart glasses.
Talking with 30 leading VCs in Sand Hill Road and China showed a mental model geared toward mobile AR and computer vision in the near-term, and smart glasses in the long-term.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Smart Homes Have a Problem With Waste and Obsolescence”

This is the way the smart home ends: not with a bang, but with obsolescence.
Obsolescence is nothing new in the world of consumer goods.
One cause of obsolescence is how new gadgets are made available to an increasingly bored consuming public.
Cooling fans would break down, keys would pop off, screens would crack, but like a used car, the machine lasted as long as someone had the money and wherewithal to patch its problems until, ultimately, the price to fix outweighed the cost of a new one.
That’s a way of saying “It wasn’t worth it for us anymore.” This concept is as old as capitalism – fix the old product until you make a new one.
Well, so what? These “Smart” appliances are all cheap enough that we can wear them into obsolescence and replace the old ones with new ones.
Why? Low recycling rates, with new innovations rapidly supplanting the old.
Picture: A bridge again over the Bering Strait, but now made of old fridges and TV that couldn’t connect to the new internet.

The orginal article.

Summary of “5 Smart Home Tricks That Are Actually Impressive”

Going to the effort of setting up a smart home just so you can turn your lights on and off from your phone may not seem like the best use of your time and resources, but with the right gear and apps you can put together some routines that really will impress family, friends, and occasional Airbnb guests.
The best smart home tricks should work like magic and if you use the location triggers that are available in free web service IFTTT, you can get all your smart home gear to respond to you leaving the house.
Many smart home services have this kind of geofencing built in, but we like IFTTT because it works with so many services and devices-insuring nothing is left on that shouldn’t be.
Assuming you’ve set up Google Home, linked it to your Google account, got the Google Home app installed on your phone, and allowed personalizations-full instructions here-you can then make a call by simply saying “Call…” followed by someone in your Google Contacts list.
Setting up your smart home so you know exactly when the kids get back from school is really useful and not that difficult to do.
On a basic level you can set up a motion-sensing camera like the $129 Canary, which will buzz you as soon as a person is detected coming through the front door-it can distinguish between people and other types of motion, and of course does plenty of other tricks too, like measuring temperature and humidity at home.
Another cool feature of this and other smart locks is being able to temporarily let family, friends, Airbnb guests and others into your home.
You also don’t actually need a physical smart home device for tracking your kids-the Life360 apps for Android and iOS will automatically ping you when your youngsters enter a certain area, no manual effort required.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Smart Toilets: Is the World Ready For Connected Lavatories?”

Today’s Tedium talks about smart bathrooms, because we couldn’t get our dumb minds out of the gutter.
How Microsoft invented the world’s first portable smart bathroom, denied it, then admitted its denial was wrong.
Eagle-eyed readers may be well aware that Japan has spearheaded toilets of similar intelligence for decades to the point where they have museums, but Kohler’s full embrace of the smart toilet approach suggests that there might be room for something similar in the American market someday.
The real value of the smart bathroom will eventually show itself in public restrooms.
The question needs to be asked: How smart do we actually want our bathrooms to be?
Are we really ready for a bathroom receptacle with machine learning capabilities? Do we actually want our toilets to be that smart?
Kohler, not limited to smart toilets, is also selling smart mirrors that are compatible with the smart toilets.
If we’re going to try and make our bathrooms smart and internet-connected, it’s probably better to put our reflections in the middle of everything.

The orginal article.