back to article Nest reveals the first truly connected home

After years of hype, the connected home is finally here thanks to a range of new products available this week from Google-owned Nest. Having announced back in September that it would launch a new smart security system, doorbell and lock, the company finally put the last two into the market this week, as well as a new, smarter …

Re: The question is...

So crap is a bad word but twat isn't? Surely it's insurance company that should be starred out :)

6
0
Silver badge

Re: The question is...

"So crap is a bad word but twat isn't? Surely it's insurance company that should be starred out :)"

Twat is cognate to the word thwaite which occurs in many names from the old Danelaw and means a garden or cultivated clearing. It seems an odd, Pythonish insult "You are a garden or a cultivated clearing in a wood", but it isn't a rude word. It's a euphemism.

The way that euphemisms themselves turn into rude words is something else.

5
0

Re: The question is...

Locks are one thing but Nest also want to be in the security alarm business and for that you need both the product and the installed to be EN50131 certified. It's a legal requirement. Check the small print in your contents insurance. I've just lost 8k worth of shit from a burglary 2 weeks ago and found my contents were not covered for precisely that reason.

7
0
Silver badge

Re: The question is...

The way that euphemisms themselves turn into rude words is something else.

English euphemisms can be weird even if they don't subsequently become as rude or objectionable as the original word.

As a child I was puzzled when told that babies were found under gooseberry bushes. Since we had a gooseberry bush in the garden and I'd never found a baby under it, nor did I ever expect to do so, I couldn't imagine why anybody would say such a stupid thing.

It was several decades later before I learned that "gooseberry bush" was 19th-century slang for pubic hair. Then again, the sole "authority" I can find for that is a columnist in The Telegraph, so it might be wrong. Either way, "babies are found under gooseberry bushes" is a weird thing to say to a child, but if The Torygraph has it right then at least there's a logical explanation behind it.

1
1
Anonymous Coward

Re: The question is...

My home insurance demands a multi-point locking system on both front and back doors in the small print which is one up from the 5 lever mortice locks they used to require. I would also recommend sash jammers for upvc doors and windows, not that they will help you that much as someone I know found out when they just removed the whole side frame of the front window to get in and take his car keys, if you ever need a reminder to make sure you turn your alarm on at night then that is it. Luckily he got the car back, always sets the alarm now.

2
0
Silver badge

Re: The question is...

"What if putting one of these in makes your insurance invalid?"

I'm sure the vendors will be happy to sell you reassuringly expensive insurance. If you've bought the product and are already paying the subscription for that they know they can keep squeezing more out of you.

6
0
Silver badge

Re: The question is...

As a colonial, "twat" just sounds too silly when people actually say it to possibly be rude. It immediately loses whatever impact was intended.

1
0
Silver badge

Re: The question is...

I think the idea is that this replaces your A-lock rather than your mortis. An A-lock is not really secure, since it's not inside the door and can be jimmied. It's supposed to be a daytime lock - you use it for just-enough security while you're in the home and awake, and are supposed to lock a proper mortis when you want the building to be actually secured.

Of course, why I'd want to spend upwards of $200 for the sake of replacing a $10 lock I can only use when I'm at home is beyond me.

0
0
Silver badge

Re: The question is...

Could that be because colonials (on TV) seem to pronounce it as "twot". It's pronounced twat, rhymes with cat.

It does sound more aggressive if you pronounce it correctly.

0
0
Silver badge

Re: The question is...

It's pronounced twat, rhymes with cat.

But that's the pronunciation that sounds silliest...

0
0

who pays ?

Who pays, as in, WHEN a house is 'compromised' as it technically won't have been broken into, just the security 'bypassed', will your insurance still pay out ?

or will they use that as yet another reson NOT to ?

as for cloud stored cameras v home based, I suppose the cloud based will keep the data intact should you be compromised, wheras your hoe based kit may actually just gwet hoovered up by the bad guys.

for me, it's a no. far prefer to 'mess about' with keys and pads to keep my place secure - ish

4
0
Silver badge
Pint

Nonsense detected

"...being able to tell Amazon's Alexa to play music or turn up the temperature... No more punching >>noisy<< keypads..."

"Noisy" keypads.

Yeah, because yelling "HEY ALEXA, PLEASE ADJUST THE ROOM TEMPERATURE TO 72 DEGREES" across the room is so much quieter than those horrifically noisy thermostat keypads, with buttons that are so incredibly loud that the local airport calls you to complain about the bloody racket.

25
0
Silver badge
Joke

Re: Nonsense detected

"Yeah, because yelling "HEY ALEXA, PLEASE ADJUST THE ROOM TEMPERATURE TO 72 DEGREES""

But 72c will cause burns

11
0
Silver badge

Re: Nonsense detected

"But 72c will cause burns"

If you're going to try to correct somebody over your SI-centric twatness, at least have the courtesy to use the correct symbol. That's pronounced "°C". HTH.

That said, we have a saying for situations where you're too daft to adjust the toy for local conventions: "Stupidity SHOULD hurt!"

3
14
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Nonsense detected

But 72c will cause burns

Ever been to a sauna?

1
0
Silver badge

Re: Nonsense detected

72c may well burn (given c is speed of light in a vacuum, if 72c were possible it would probably feel quite toasty)

1
0
Silver badge

Re: Nonsense detected

What "warp factor" is 72c?

0
0

Re: Nonsense detected

If your sauna is at 72 Celcius... (161 Fahrenheit) I hope that it's installed in a burns unit!

0
2
Silver badge
FAIL

If your sauna is at 72 Celcius

then it's too fscking cold. 90 Celcius is getting there. 100 Celcius is just right.

0
0
Silver badge

The Smart Door Lock power issue

A solar cell embedded in the lock's upper surface would help in some situations. As part of the design.

If a couple of AA cells can last for a couple of months, then the lock's power consumption is pretty small. So a small solar cell could make a big difference, assuming it can receive some daylight.

1
0
Silver badge

Re: The Smart Door Lock power issue

Car doors have been able to get a power supply for years, if and a bloody big IF you want a toy like this for some obscure reason then do a properly engineered job, not a bodger job with feeble batteries.

2
0

EN50131

Does nest comply with EN50131; a legal requirement in the UK. Plus the installer must also be EN50131 certified so you can just buy these off Amazon and install away not if you want to be covered by your insurance. A cursory google shows only a few select insurance companies in the US that will cover a home protected by a Nest system

3
0
Anonymous Coward

Software bug and everything stops working for a few weeks - like the Nest thermostats in a recent winter.

You might pay a subscription - but I bet you end up with bricked devices when the maker decides to bring out a new range of products. Alternatively it will get divested to a competitor who soon makes it EOL - and then offers you new products for another grand or so.

11
0
Silver badge

We are talking about Google here, they will discontinue the service.

11
0
Silver badge

@katrinab

We are talking about Google here, they will discontinue the service.

Actually, Google & Facebook may know who the burglar is... unless the burglar turns off their handset well in advance of the act

0
0
Bronze badge

Speaking of bricking devices, this is exactly what Acurite is doing with their cloud based service that reads temperature sensors. etc. A product that they only released in September of 2016 is already being killed off and customers are being forced to upgrade. That is the beauty of cloud services. The corporation has the power to do whatever it wants, and you have no say whatsoever.

2
0
Bronze badge

Except when you turn it off, it is not actually off.

0
0
Silver badge

Speak with your feet

The corporation has the power to do whatever it wants, and you have no say whatsoever.

But that would require the customer to not be complacent (or downright lazy).

1
0
Anonymous Coward

"like the Nest thermostats in a recent winter"

Facebook fake news alert....

1
1
Silver badge

The biggest problem with a lot of SmartHome stuff is that it is battery powered. Radiator valves, burglar alarm sensors, door locks, etc would all be significantly more useful if mains powered, for example by Power over Ethernet. Not only does that avoid having to change batteries, but they can have better communications, better functionality. A lot of the things I've tried have been a bit rubbish because the designers have been struggling to make it work on 2 AA cells for a month or so.

So the sooner they start building homes with Cat5 cable run to every radiator, corner of every ceiling, outside door, window, shed, the sooner they can build things that work properly.

13
0
Silver badge

"So the sooner they start building homes with Cat5 cable run to every radiator, corner of every ceiling, outside door, window, shed, the sooner they can build things that work properly."

It doesn't even need to be that expensive. It's not like you radiator needs to stream 1080p video. Twisted pair should be enough for the low data rates needed for most IoT devices. Or single wire I2C. Radiators already have a ground return path :-)

5
0
Silver badge

So the sooner they start building homes with Cat5 cable run to every radiator, corner of every ceiling, outside door, window, shed, the sooner they can build things that work properly.

When a friend of mine was planning to have a new dentistry practice built, I advised him to run a silly number of empty conduits from a central utility room to just about everywhere to allow for easy installation of whatever might show up on the market a few years on, requiring some form of connectivity (network, power or even compressed air). This of course in addition to the planned power, water and compressed air.

5
0

Look up Thread.

0
0
Anonymous Coward

"Twisted pair should be enough for the low data rates needed for most IoT devices."

X10 style from a nearby power socket gives both power and signalling.

0
0
Silver badge

Radiators already have a ground return path

They also have a supply of both mechanical energy and heat energy that are capable of being converted into electrical energy...

2
0
Silver badge
Boffin

They also have a supply of both mechanical energy and heat energy that are capable of being converted into electrical energy...

That would require flow and/or a temperature difference between radiator and room. If the valve has been shut for a while then both conditions will be absent and you'll have a bit of a bootstrapping problem unless you have some storage element in the valve.

4
0
Silver badge
Pint

"...for example by Power over Ethernet."

Bazza suggested providing power "... for example by Power over Ethernet."

Well, if you're going to be running a cable now, then (for some applications, e.g. actuators, sensors) just dispense with the remote Smarts. Use the simpler old-school, hard-wired gadgets that can last for 20 years. The Smart control box would be under the stairs, or in the basement. There may be no need for Smarts at the remote end.

I recently updated my Alarm Control panel from a mechanical key switch panel to an RFID panel. The first key switch panel had lasted over 25 years. The new wired-in RFID panel was $10 delivered.

Once you're running cables to a given location, then there may be better faster cheaper options than wireless Smart Home du jour gadgets. At least in some applications.

Just something to consider while drilling holes and pulling cables.

0
0
Silver badge

"...building homes with Cat5 cable run to every..."

JBnb suggested "...building homes with Cat5..."

I have some experience on this. I'll explain by way of some barely-exaggerated examples.

New house wired with Cat5, but should have been Cat5e. Or should have been Shielded. Or should have been Cat6 Shielded. Oooh, look Cat7.

New house prewired with an RG6 coaxial cable to the roof for a satellite dish. Too bad, now they need four such cables.

Having learned the above lessons, living room TV area has three empty conduits installed, each tube leading to the unfinished basement. Total flexibility, YAY!! Wife then wants 'B' speakers installed in kitchen, but the three conduits are already too full. Should have installed four empty conduits. Maybe five. Or six.

You CANNOT win.

My next house will have a goldamn Cable and Wiring Tunnel (six feet wide, eight feet tall) running past every single room, with access ports to each room of about a square meter each. Then it'll be trivial to retrofit some new fiberoptic Cat73c cable, ...or a watermain.

11
0
Bronze badge

What's the compressed air for?

0
0
Silver badge

What's the compressed air for?

Ever been to the dentist? They run quite a few things on compressed air.

Having a dentist friend has some advantages: no fuss about anaesthetics*, and all those grinder bits that are too dull to use on a patient (there might be some exceptions to that) still do just fine for working on electronics casings and stuff.

* just don't accept that drink afterwards if you're the last patient for the day.

2
0
Silver badge

Re: "...building homes with Cat5 cable run to every..."

"... area has three empty conduits installed"

I second that. When refurbishing H Mansion I had empty conduit put in from every room to the basement - has made life much easier. And a tip from my surveyor: if you don't know where your'e going to put the HiFi, etc. just run a plastic ventilation duct or something under the floor along the relevant walls, so you can just drill a hole through the floor, into the duct. Then pulling cables between the HiFi and loudspeakers, central connections in the basement, etc. is really easy.

0
0
Silver badge
Holmes

I've said it before and I'll say it again

Like most of the IoT stuff, it's a solution waiting for a problem. There is a very limited use case where it makes sense, but for the majority of people they *already have* perfectly good mature technology doing most of this.

I can't recall *ever* having had to answer the door when I wasn't in the house... and indeed, I've had *one* break-in in sixty years. The miscreants lifted a paving slab from the street outside, carried it up two flights of external stairs(!), and used it to batter the door down. It's hard to see quite how any of this new technology would have prevented that. As pointed out earlier - a local store of a camera is probably a simpler approach anyway.

7
0
Silver badge

Re: I've said it before and I'll say it again

"Like most of the IoT stuff, it's a solution waiting for a ..."

As PT Barnum said, there's one born every minute.

1
0

Re: I've said it before and I'll say it again

Last week, the county trash pickup damaged our fence, and of course they said they didn't do it. Of course the fence was bent out in a way that only be done by some machinery like they use on the trash trucks. So we are going to get a CCTV system. No IOT shit. Just 2 cameras hooked up to a local DVR.

0
0
Silver badge

Connected Castle

We have a fully autonomous system of Butlers and Footmen

Says woman from Windsor

7
2
Anonymous Coward

Re: Connected Castle

Numerous lone intruders. Michael Fagan in 1982 was actually close enough to have been dangerous if so inclined.

On the other hand in 2013 Prince Andrew was stopped by police who thought him an intruder

2
0
Silver badge
Coat

"Sounds awful"

Marvin the paranoid Android.

6
0
Thumb Up

Re: "Sounds awful"

"Here's another of those self-satisfied doors. Life! Don't talk to me about life.”

0
0
Silver badge

The only think I see of any use with any of this is saving energy by having better control of your heating when you're in, or about to be. The rest is just a solution looking for a problem which isn't there. Just imagine having to do things! We are all going to end up like on WALL-E!

2
0
Silver badge

The only think I see of any use with any of this is saving energy by having better control of your heating when you're in

Every HVAC person I know says that the most efficient way to run most home systems is to set them at one temperature and leave them alone.

When you turn off the HVAC, the walls and objects in your house get cold (or hot, depending on climate / season). This means that when the system comes back on, it requires more energy to return the house to the desired temperature.

I have not done a/b testing of this on my own system; but I follow this advice, and my energy usage is generally in the lowest 1/3 among comparable homes, according to electric company data.

3
1

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2018