Why You Should Embrace Smart Home Technology

Smart homes are becoming more and more popular as technology improves and becomes more readily available. Some people are hesitant to make the leap into smart home technology and worry it may be expensive, but in this modern age, the benefits of a smart home far outweigh the costs. Now is the time to invest in your future with a smart home that meets your needs.

Manage Home Functions in One Place

In the fast-paced world of the 21st century, according to Frontsteps, convenience is key. With smart home technology, managing your home’s functions has never been so convenient. In your smart home, you can deal with heating, cooling, lighting, and every other need at the touch of a button in one remote or app.

Whether you’re at home, at work, or even away on vacation, you can make sure your home is at the right temperature, lit appropriately, and safe and secure.

Greater Home Security

Staying safe and secure is one of the biggest benefits of home ownership, and with smart home technology, you can feel an added layer of protection. From motion sensors and alarm systems to the basics like smoke alarms will keep your home safe as part of your smart automation system. These tools will give you the peace of mind to know your house is safe, wherever you are. Safety features like this have made home automation even more popular. In fact, according to AMP Smart, in 2019, 33% of households in the U.S. used a home automation system.

Year-Round Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is becoming one of the most important aspects of home ownership. With a smart tech system, you can increase your home’s efficiency. With a smart thermostat, you can set precise temperatures to match your schedule. This keeps your house comfortable while your home and as efficient as possible when you’re out. Even your lights can be programmed to automatically shift as daylight changes, helping your home be more efficient with almost no effort on your part. Making your home efficient has never been easier!

Investing in smart home technology is a way for you to take control of your home and make your life easier. Whether you’re in your first home or a seasoned homeowner, you have a unique opportunity to tailor your smart home to your needs. Make your home the best it can be with smart home technology today.

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Home Tech That Keeps You and Your Family Safe

When it comes to protecting your home, finding the right security devices can be difficult. With so many different options out there, it can be hard to know where to start. Here are three different home tech options you can install to keep yourself and your family safe.

Motion-Sensor Cameras

Motion-sensor cameras can make a big difference in protecting your home and in giving you peace of mind. Motion-sensor cameras can actually be a big deterrent for would-be thieves. Thieves stay away because they know that there’s a chance that their face will be recognized on the sensor.

Additionally, motion-sensor cameras can also give you peace of mind when it comes to knowing where your family members are. If you go out of town, having remote access to them can help you know when your children get home.

Smart Door Locks

Smart door locks can make a big difference in protecting your home from burglaries. Unfortunately, according to AMP Smart, around 3.7 million homes are broken into every year. Having a smart door lock secures your door through networking. This eliminates the risk of someone either finding your key beneath a doormat or picking the lock.

Additionally, smart locks can be incredibly functional. You can give your children the passcode so that they can enter the home when needed but don’t have to carry around a key that they could potentially lose.

Water Leak Sensors

When it comes to keeping your home and family safe, water leak sensors may not be the first thing that pops to mind. However, installing these smart sensors can make a big difference. According to Fresh Water Systems, they ensure your home stays safe from costly problems.

Typically, these sensors are installed in areas where leaks are common, like under your kitchen faucet, in bathrooms, or connected to your dishwasher. When the sensor senses a leak, it is able to turn the water off to that appliance. This can make a big difference in preventing floods as well as in catching smaller leaks that may normally go unnoticed.

When it comes to your home security, there are a variety of important measures to take. In addition to installing a reliable home security system, it can also be a good idea to install other home tech. Think about your family’s specific needs to identify the best options for you.

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The Benefits of Learning to Drive on a Simulator

One of the latest developments in driving technology is simulation. Learning to drive on a simulator is beneficial in many important ways. Simulation can benefit new drivers as well as experienced drivers. If you are curious about the ways driving in a simulator can help you, keep reading to find out more.

Creates Safer Drivers

Traditional driver’s education program models are currently several decades old and incredibly out of date. Simulations, on the other hand, are up-to-date and can offer hundreds of more scenarios to train drivers than a traditional driving program can. Driving simulators replicate the experiences of actual driving in many different road, weather, and traffic conditions and allow drivers to get experience in ways they otherwise would not be able. Of course, no simulator can replicate hard-earned hours on the road, but simulators can be great supplemental tools for driving training.

Prepare for Unexpected Situations

Simulation allows drivers to prepare for unexpected situations. Simulation training exposes drivers to challenging, realistic scenarios that increase critical driving skills, strengthen decision-making abilities, and improve the overall safety of your operations. Drivers can practice making good decisions in difficult situations by replicating challenging scenarios multiple times until they receive a successful outcome. If drivers have enough practice handling challenging situations, they will be able to react more safely in a real-life stressful situation, even with the adrenaline and sensory overload such a situation may cause.

Reduce Accidents

Nearly every one of us has either been involved in a car accident or knows someone personally who has. Car accidents are terrible, tragic, and often very avoidable. Training safer drivers who know they are prepared for unexpected situations will lead to a reduction in the number of accidents nationwide. Simulation technology is a great way to save hundreds of lives by creating a smarter driving culture in general. The current number of accidents happening every minute in the United States is astonishing and tragic. In fact, the United States has more fatal car accidents than anywhere else in the world. Investing in simulation technology will help us combat this problem by providing safer, more effective drivers.

Everyone can greatly benefit from driving simulators. Both new and experienced drivers can prepare better for unexpected situations and learn from practical experience the newest safety techniques. Additionally, driving simulators can benefit even those who don’t drive themselves, by creating safer roadways nationwide. The benefits are endless and important enough to warrant taking the necessary steps toward investing in driving simulators in your area.

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How Smart Home Technology Can Save You Money

Owning a home comes with a plethora of expenses. There’s usually a mortgage to pay, to start. Then there’s homeowners’ insurance, property taxes, utility bills, and the cost of maintenance and upkeep. It’s expensive. Fortunately, smart home technology can help you save some of your hard-earned money.

Smart Thermostats

Have you ever been shocked by the amount of your energy bill before? According to Direct Energy, heating and cooling your home can be responsible for nearly half of the bill all by itself. Changing out an old model thermostat for a new, smart thermostat can help you reduce that cost. You can more easily set your thermostat to reflect whether or not anyone’s home. It’s also easier to adjust it for daytime and nighttime temperatures. Keep in mind that a smart thermostat doesn’t change how much energy is needed to heat or cool your home. What it does do is help you avoid having to unnecessarily heat or cool your home. This saves you both energy and money.

Smart Lighting

While heating makes up a much smaller percentage of the power bill, the cost of lighting your home still makes up a measurable chunk of the bill. Smart lighting gives you another opportunity to save some money by reducing your energy consumption. Using the right type of bulb is a good place to start. According to Lighting & Supplies, LED light bulbs can last up to ten times longer than conventional light bulbs. They also use less energy to produce a comparable amount of light. Like other smart devices, smart lighting can often be controlled remotely. If you leave a light on, you can turn it off from wherever you are and save the cost of lighting that room until you need to again.

Smart Sprinklers

You’ve probably seen at least one lawn that had the sprinklers going while it was raining. Maybe that’s even been you before. It’s a bit silly to water your lawn when the world’s doing it for you, isn’t it? By installing a smart sprinkler system, you can save money by making sure you don’t use more water than needed for your lawn again. Some systems will even monitor the weather for you and adjust your watering schedule to match. It’ll be easier to customize your water usage to meet your actual needs as indicated by changing weather patterns, soil moisture, and the needs of the plants in your yard.

While it’s not likely to do much for your mortgage or make a dent in the cost of maintenance and upkeep, smart home technology can help you save some money on your utilities. Smart thermostats, lighting, and sprinkler systems can help reduce your energy and water usage, reducing the corresponding bills. Between the added savings and convenience, what’s not to love?

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How Much Do You Really Know About USB Cables?

Many people use USB cables every day, but not a lot of people know much about them. Charting their evolution since USB cables were developed in 1996, understanding the specific design involved, and recognizing the way their design affects functionality are all important parts of understanding USB cables.

History

The universal serial bus (USB) cable system was developed in 1996. While there were previous versions in development as early as 1994, USB 1.0 was the first to reach the market. Perhaps ironically, USB cables were originally designed to reduce the clutter of several different wires coming into and out of a computer. In some ways, the USB system has succeeded, at least in reducing the number of connections necessary for a particular item.

Design

Have you ever fumbled around while trying to connect a USB cable the right way? While it may be annoying, the USB being only able to go in one way is considered an example of Poka Yoke, or fool-proofing something. The ideal USB fits into many different peripherals, including printers, cameras, computer mice, and keyboards. One end is designed to attach to the peripheral, and one end is designed to fit into a computer. Despite USB cables sometimes getting a bad rap, it usually works as designed. For example, there are many brands of USB keyboards that can attach to a computer almost instantly, despite having different designs or layouts.

Functionality

Nowhere is the functionality of a USB cable, specifically the USB port, more on display than with modern power banks. For example, a modern power bank has the ability to charge an Android phone, an Apple iPhone, and an Amazon Kindle simultaneously. The Android phone’s USB-C type cable is not impeded by the Apple iPhone’s Lightning Cable or the Kindle’s micro USB cable. Instead, they can all charge as long as a USB port is open. In fact, because USB has become so ubiquitous, the connection points have backwards compatibility as the technology continues to evolve.

USB cables and connections are among the unsung heroes of the technological age. While you might never really think about them, USB is a vital part of daily life. USB cables are functional, recognizing that the newer technologies will need to be compatible with previous versions. It is also well designed, which allows USB to be a style of peripheral connection that’s used around the world.

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What You Need to Know to Make a High-Tech Kitchen

Technology in the kitchen has certainly come a long way in the last 100 years. From the introduction of basic electrical appliances in kitchens to instant pots that can cook meals in minutes, there are many ways that technology has improved the way that people prepare meals at home. If you are thinking of remodeling your kitchen, then there are many high-tech items that you might want to consider using.

What Makes a Kitchen High-Tech?

High-tech kitchens use the latest inventions to make life as easy as possible. There are a number of reasons why people might want to go high-tech for their kitchen, for those who like to cook as well as those who hate it. For those who love to cook, among the top reasons is it allows them to be more passionate about their hobby because they can accomplish more in a shorter cook time than ever before. For those too busy to cook, using high-tech appliances means that they can get a meal on the table faster. There are even gadgets that will remind you when it is time to get rid of the food that you have not used or keep your grocery list automatically.

High-Tech Appliances

When you are getting ready to remodel your kitchen, consider high-tech appliances. The June Oven may be the perfect solution for a small kitchen because this tabletop oven acts as a conventional oven, an air fryer, a dehydrator, a slow cooker and much more. It is preprogrammed with over 200 recipes that you can set to cook with voice commands. It also can recognize the foods that you are putting in so that it can start cooking automatically, and it fully integrates with your smartphone. On the other hand, if you are one of those people who cannot start the day without a cup of coffee, then the GE Profile PFE28PBLTS may be the perfect refrigerator for you as it has a Keurig coffee system built right in the door. You may also want to consider refrigerators with a tablet directly on the door so that you can quickly look up recipes or make your grocery list.

High-Tech Kitchen Gadgets

Many small kitchen appliances have become high-tech gadgets. For example, the GeniCan attaches to your trashcan, so you can scan the barcode when you are throwing away an empty container to add the item to your grocery list or order it automatically from Amazon. The Revolution toaster has a built-in tablet so that you can order the perfect toast to be prepared just the way that you like it. If your toast gets cold, then it will reheat it for 15 seconds. The Drop scale automatically connects to thousands of recipes and tells you exactly how much you need to put in. If you are out of something, the Drop scale can even make recommendations for substitutions.

While there is still no automatic robot that will prepare complete meals for you or wash the dishes afterward, high-tech gadgets make life a lot easier. Consider them when you are remodeling your kitchen.

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3 Things You Probably Don’t Know About Hearing Aid Technology

No matter your hearing challenges, modern hearing aid technology is advancing rapidly and can actually make every aspect of communication easier than ever before. Your options include wireless Bluetooth streaming and the chance to connect to your smartphone.

More Digital

Digital hearing aid technology functionally turns your amplification tools into a pair of highly specialized digital headphones. You can sync many of these to your smartphone or other audio devices to enable you to move from face to face conversation to phone calls quickly and easily. In addition, the rechargeable battery options mean that a single battery charge can take you through the whole day. The first digital hearing aid was developed by Siemens in the 1990s. This technology continues to grow exponentially as the year’s pass.

Safety Features

In addition to digital technology, there are hearing aids on the market that can provide translations or summon help if you fall. This AI option is available in a behind the ear or BTE unit and can help you to monitor your overall health condition on a daily basis. If more activity is your goal, a hearing aid built to offer artificial intelligence as a bonus to providing you with clear audio is a great investment.

Work for All Kinds of Hearing Loss

Whether your hearing loss is conductive and related to problems with the eardrum and bones or if the condition is sensorineural or nerve-related, quality digital hearing aids can provide assistance. With some forms of hearing loss, such as Meniere’s disease, it’s hard to know at what point the hearing loss is permanent. Many forms of hearing loss are caused by inflammation, and steroidal treatment of the condition can help in regaining some hearing. However, if the hearing loss is known to be profound, hearing aids can help no matter the severity of the hearing loss. If the hearing mechanism, including the small bones of the ear and the eardrum, an implant can help. Digital hearing aids can fit both in the ear and over it. These tools are getting smaller and more comfortable for users year by year.

As the baby boomer demographic ages, the risk of hearing loss increases. Many who suffer from hearing loss may worry about dealing with a hearing aid, remember the bulky beige units of yesterday. However, today’s hearing aid users will find themselves well connected to the world once their hearing aids are charged and put to use.

Read this article for information about more ways technology can improve daily life.

Technology That Can Make It Easier to Stay On Your Diet and Exercise Plan

As everyone knows, the continued evolution of technology has made our lives easier in many respects. One such example is the incredible ways in which technology has made it easier to exercise, diet and get into better shape. These technological evolutions have made amazing things possible; here’s a look at three such examples.

Wearable Devices

Wearable devices can keep track of a variety of important exercising metrics, including your pulse and daily activity. Many of these devices also can automatically be charted, graphed or imported into a variety of exercise apps, giving you an accurate reading of your daily activity and enabling you to see which parts of your physical routine you need to improve.

Apps

90% of diets fail, but by using apps that help you keep track better you don’t have to be worried about failing. Thankfully, there are no shortage of good apps which you can use. These apps run the gamut when it comes to diet and exercise. For example, you can use a variety of apps to look up the calories of food and manage what you eat and drink. These apps essentially act as a log which make it easier for you to track the number of calories you consume every day. You can also usually input your daily exercise, enabling you to get a full sense of how many calories you have to play with.

Instructional Videos

Previously, one of the biggest barriers to using the gym was the lack of knowledge when it came to how to use certain pieces of equipment. That is no longer a concern. The internet and YouTube are replete with an array of instructional videos which can help teach you how to safely use equipment and give you recommendations for starting weight and sample exercises. Since you can view these on your phone, you can literally watch a video, put the phone back in your pocket, and get to work.

Thanks to the evolution of technology, it is easier than ever before to stick to a diet, learn how to exercise and essentially have a personal trainer in your pocket. Typical barriers, such as cost or a lack of expertise, have fallen by the wayside. If you are interested in getting into shape or eating healthier, you now only have to visit your app store and you will have everything you need.

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How You Can Buy a Drone Without Breaking the Bank

Drones are quickly becoming one of the most “must-have” items in the technology field, and if you don’t have one yet, you probably want to get one soon. But unless you work in a field that requires you to use a drone professionally, you probably aren’t wanting to spend a fortune on something you’ll end up using for entertainment more than anything else. Here’s a look at some ways you can get a drone without breaking the bank.

Be Specific With Needs

Drone prices vary wildly; toy drones can be bought for as little as $20 while professional-level drones can cost you around $1,000. One of the best ways is to make sure you don’t overspend. If you’re looking for a drone to fly around for a couple of hours on the weekends that can do some flips and basic tricks, you don’t need to spend a ton of money on something with a hi-def camera that can fly for hours on end. Before you make a decision or even start really looking, decide what you need out of your drone. Wondershare Filmora recommends that you ask yourself some questions and decide what you’re looking for. Basic recreational level drones don’t cost nearly as much as professional-level options.

Shop Around

Unless you go into a big-box store, you’re probably going to end up ordering your drone online. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, especially since it will enable you to see a wider variety of options as far as features and pricing. However, it’s vital that you do your homework on what you’re ordering from the internet. Common sense indicates that a drone with expensive parts will cost you more as a consumer, while a cheaper made drone will cost less but could have issues down the road. Domestic items often cost more while drones manufactured in China may be cheaper. When buying drones or drone parts directly from China, you need to check the company you’re ordering from carefully. While it can be a great way to cheaply find parts or models, the lack of oversight means there could be many low-quality knock-offs that won’t hold up, according to TonySourcing.

Don’t Be Afraid to Buy Used

If you’re looking to buy a relatively inexpensive drone, don’t rule out the concept of buying a used one. There’s a chance that you’re going to decide that drone flying isn’t the right hobby for you (and that’s OK), but that means other people may have decided it wasn’t right for them too. While you can find used drones for sale on social media or online auction sites, that may not be your best route. Unless you personally know the seller of the particular second-hand drone you’re looking at, check out some reputable drone selling sites to make sure you get what you’re looking for, says expert Quad Hangar.

Buying a drone doesn’t have to cost a fortune. There are lots of ways to figure out exactly the type of gadgets you want, how to use them, and where to buy. Find what you need, and happy flying!

How the Digital Age Is Changing the Used Car Buying Experience

The car buying industry has been one of the most stagnant and slow to adapt markets in the consumer world. The traditional model of blindly visiting your local used car dealer and putting your fate in their hands remained the only car-buying option until recently. However, in the same way that the digital age has revolutionized so many other aspects of our lives, the used car buying experience is finally evolving. While this is almost entirely a positive change for the consumer, the process is not without its risks.

Research

Arguably the most important aspect of any used car buying experience is research. This research covers a multitude of factors, including the reliability of certain models, the reputation of specific dealers, or even the price you should pay. In the past, conducting comprehensive research was extremely challenging, if not impossible. However, the power of knowledge is finally in the hands of the consumer. There are now countless websites that provide any amount of information a car shopper could buy. One of the most important pieces of research that a consumer can conduct is to review the reliability ratings of the models they are considering. These ratings often go beyond simple scores and instead function as highly in-depth analyses of the strengths and complications of any make and model. People can now know more about a car before buying it through the information available from vin reports, reviews, and other websites. Beyond researching the cars, themselves, the digital age has also empowered shoppers to research specific dealers. It is now effectively impossible for a dishonest dealer to hide behind a flashy facade; if they have earned a bad reputation, it is now trivial to find out why. Lastly but arguably most important is the ability to research the price to pay. Never before has a customer been more able to compare prices and thus walk into a dealership wielding a competitive offer.

Social Media

Social media has also played a surprisingly powerful role in transforming the used car buying experience. Rather than heading directly to a dealership, more and more people are using options such as Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist to find their new car. These options not only broaden the choices available, but they reduce the cost associated with a needless middleman. Even if they choose to buy a car from a traditional dealer, social media is now serving as a powerful sounding board where people can ask and gather opinions of cars, dealers, or options.

The Consumer Is No Longer a Passive Observer

The amount of power and information available to a used car shopper can at times be overwhelming. However, the available websites do a fantastic job of organizing and categorizing information, making the process as easy as possible. While focus and a plan of attack are crucial in the car shopping experience, the playing field has never been more level. Thankfully, the changes seen so far have been almost universally positive.

It is likely true that the traditional dealership network will continue to go through various growing pains as the industry continues to evolve. However, the most likely outcome is a continued positive transformation for everyone involved.

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