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A computer's place is in the kitchen

Mike Elgan | Sept. 1, 2015
Forget the living room. The kitchen is the true family hub now. Here's what Amazon is cooking up.

When people go into the living room, they often do so for a specific purpose -- to talk, watch TV, play video games or something else. They go there to escape their chores and tasks and schedules and all the rest.

That's why the kitchen is the best place for a family computer.

A recipe for home automation, communication, shopping and information

The natural behavior of humans shows that kitchens are the de facto spot for family communication, displays, organization and more.

It's also true that kitchens are used primarily for storing and making food. Cooking is a data-intensive activity involving recipes, instructions, ingredient information, measurement conversions and more. A kitchen computer can provide all the necessary data.

Once the cooking is done, you've got to clean up. That's boring, so people want entertainment while doing the dishes. A kitchen computer can entertain.

When you use up the last of your paprika or discover that you're low on paper towels, you want to order more -- and schedule delivery -- right away. That's better than writing down what you need on a grocery list. A kitchen computer can handle your shopping -- especially if it's a kitchen computer from Amazon.

Finally, when we talk about home automation, we're talking about dumb appliances made smart, mostly. Most home appliances are in the kitchen, and very soon we'll see the mainstreaming of smart toasters, smart ovens, smart dishwashers, smart mixers -- smart everything. A kitchen computer can serve as the control room for all the smart appliances in your house.

I recently reviewed a smart cooking scale that blew my mind. It's called the Adaptics Drop Kitchen Scale for iPad. In a nutshell, the scale communicates via Bluetooth with a dedicated iPad app. That combination lets you do amazing things.

Drop kitchen scale with iPad app
The Adaptics Drop Kitchen Scale for iPad takes you step by step through the whole process of preparing a recipe. Credit: GetDrop.com

You can pick a recipe and the Drop scale takes you step by step through the whole preparation process. If the recipe serves six, but you're making a meal for two, it will instantly change the amounts of all ingredients. You add everything to a single bowl by weight. It knows just when to prompt you to preheat the oven and that sort of thing.

Now imagine that instead of an iPad, the scale interacted with your central kitchen computer. Further imagine that all your smart appliances were similarly connected to the same app. The kitchen computer could start and set the oven, guide you through every recipe, give you all your timers, make your ingredient conversions and substitutions and more.

 

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