While we've all been living with social distancing and quarantine for the past few weeks, there is one thing every person working from home has in common, and there are millions of us. We are all struggling with crappy equipment and room setups, and therefore having terrible experiences with video conference calls. We almost all sound like crap, look way too small on a laptop screen, have delays and echoes, and it is affecting everyone's business in a negative way.
With remote work becoming the new normal for the foreseeable future, these problems need to be addressed and resolved.
Before the harnessing of electricity, artificial light was expensive, and therefore relatively scarce. Over the last 100 years or so, the cost of lighting our world has become negligible, which has had enormous economic consequences. The home and the workplace became safer, factories increased productivity, and social activities extended late into the night.
If there were ever a time we needed our home networking to work better, it would be now. If you were to do a quick google search on “best router,” you probably wonder where to start when you get 124 million results. The issue isn’t the answer (like 42), but are we asking the right questions? In this blog, I want to try and ask the right questions and give homeowners a place to look for the correct answers.
When humans first populated the earth, the largest influence on their lives was the sun. It determined when they woke and when the slept, when they hunted and when they hid. Even after the discovery of fire, the physical toll of maintaining an open flame limited its functionality as a light source. Even tallow candles, popular in the 14th century, were so expensive that only the most affluent members of society could enjoy more than a few minutes of light per day.
Up to the 19th century it was still prohibitively expensive for the majority of people. In 1816 Baltimore became the first city in America to light its streets with gas distributed through a system of pipelines. This technology proved so beneficial that it was found in almost every city by 1850. And just like that, we owned the night.
This is part one of a three-part series covering how we can control light to improve our lives. In the first part we will cover lighting design, and how it impacts our ability to enjoy and use our space.
This shouldn’t be news to anyone, but your average home contains more “smart” devices than ever before. Nest thermostats may have brought the trend to the mainstream, but Alexa, HomeKit, Sonos, and others have taken that momentum and run with it. You might think that adding a few of these devices would take you to the pinnacle of the “Smart Home,” but is there anything that is missing from these consumer or DIY devices that is available in the professional systems like Control4, ELAN and Savant? Let’s take a look.
Who ever said bigger isn’t better has never walked the TV area at CES, the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Reporters and news programs can give a misleading view of what CES has to offer, as they tend to focus on the ‘concept cars’ rather than the ‘production cars’ of technology. Last year, the stories about LG’s rollup TV and this year’s Samsung's swing-into-portrait-mode Sero TV fell into that bucket. Yet underneath all the hype, we find some real changes coming to TVs, and many of them are available today.
I often wonder “Why do we welcome technology more in our cars than in our homes?” After all, let’s go back to the last time you approached your car: You probably pressed the button on a remote that unlocked the door and disarmed the alarm. As you pull back on the door in your car, the light conveniently comes on for you inside and the seat moves back. When you sit down, and either put your key in or press start, the seat moves forward as the steering wheel moves down and towards you. As you take a drive down the road, your favorite music is just a single button press away on the six presets. Why doesn’t your house do all this?
Does calling for help on your smart home problems give you Technical Support Derangement Syndrome? It’s frustrating for anyone, especially when dealing with a luxury custom integration company, that all you hear is:
- “I’m sorry. The person you need to speak with isn’t in the office at the moment. Can I have him give you a call back?”
- “Let me make a few calls and get back to you as soon as I can.”
- Or the dreaded “Hold please,” only to be left hanging for an inordinate amount of time.
If that’s what you usually hear, then you may not be calling the right people. The problem is not that they don’t want to help; it could be that they may simply lack the technical knowledge necessary to help you solve your problem. Also, the person answering the phone at your integrator’s office may be in the middle of entering invoices, have guests in the lobby that need attention, or is otherwise distracted, making someone else’s experience way less than stellar.
Relive Your Favorite Moments with Lighting and Shading Scenes
It’s difficult to understand the ‘wow’ effect of home automation until you experience it. Picture telling your smart speaker, “Chill,” and watching your home’s shades lower, lights shift to dim whites, magentas, and blues, and soft jazz music starts playing from your sound system—all at once. No longer are you just standing in your home; you’ve been transported to a moment that can be relived over and over.
Lighting and shading have immense power to shift our moods and the way our home’s interior looks. From wellness to hosting get-togethers, continue reading to see how automated shading and lighting make all the difference in your home.
Tips to Ensure Your Network Is Up to Speed
At BRAVAS, we’re wild about the interconnectivity of smart home devices. From motorized shades to whole-home audio and security cameras, home automation is both a useful and fun addition to any household. But if you’re using a wireless system, is it strong enough to handle all of your devices while still able to stream audio, video, and surf the web?
A robust WiFi network should not frequently break down or be affected by a single device’s failure. A strong system should be able to recover quickly from hold-ups and bugs and adding more to your smart home should not put a strain on it.
So how can you bring your network up to speed so that all of your smart devices function flawlessly? Improve your internet connection with our tips below!