Where Design Catches Up To Reality TV

Jared Spool

November 12th, 2005

Consumer-electronics manufacturer, Phillips, introduces its HomeLab research facility:

Phillip's HomeLab
What is HomeLab?

Philips HomeLab looks and feels like a regular home with modern furniture in every room, Van Gogh prints on the walls, and even a fully stocked kitchen. While no one lives at Philips HomeLab, temporary “residents” can stay at the facility for anywhere from 24 hours to two weeks, depending on the type of research being conducted. During their residence, individuals or families will go about life as usual, while interacting with the new technologies Philips has installed in the facility.

HomeLab Observation Room

Some innovations that Phillips is testing in the lab:

Interactive Mirror

The Interactive Mirror enhances a mirror with a display function, while adding interactivity by sensing user input. The Interactive Mirror demonstrates several application concepts for domestic and professional use, supporting and enhancing our daily activities by providing new possibilities. A set of applications specifically developed for the bathroom enables you to check the latest weather forecast and traffic information, examine your weight, try on new hairstyles, and control ambient lighting. A new application called “Double Vision” allows the mirror to act as a magnifying mirror and show your back view. It also offers an intuitive user interface for adjusting light settings that simulate different lighting conditions, e.g. ‘Outdoor’, ‘Office’, etc.

The lab itself sounds like something CBS would show during prime time. Do participants get voted out?

(Ok. I wrote this before I saw Dan Saffer’s writeup. So, I guess we think similarly…)

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