Berekeley student Derek Lowe's automated dorm room and the future of smart homes. [VIDEO]

Berkeley Student's Automated Dorm Room: The Future of Smart Homes?

Berkeley Student's Automated Dorm Room: The Future of Smart Homes?

Future Tense
The Citizen's Guide to the Future
May 1 2012 4:47 PM

Berkeley Student's Automated Dorm Room: The Future of Smart Homes?

Widespread adoption of smart homes—in which everything from the refrigerator to the light switches are networked together to allow for energy efficiency and resident customization—are still on the technological horizon.

But a Berkeley student's high-tech dorm room demonstrates the benefits that can come from smart living. In the video below, Derek Low shows off BRAD (Berkeley Ridiculously Automated Dorm), which he outfitted with motion detectors, curtains that open and close with the help of a smartphone app, and, of course, a “romantic mode” including a disco ball and music. What college girl doesn’t love Elton John’s “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?”

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Prediction: Low will try to leverage the viral stardom from his automated-dorm video to get funding for a smart-home startup. 

Future Tense is a partnership of SlateNew America, and Arizona State University.

Torie Bosch is the editor of Future Tense, a project of Slate, New America, and Arizona State that looks at the implications of new technologies.