Thinkbig Factory see the networking of houses as the infrastructure of future smart cities. The Spanish architecture and design consultancy is working on an automated house prototype that is set up as a living laboratory. Their project, Openarch, is a place to test ideas and products on the way to building a fully operational, gesture-based home of the future.
Openarch incorporates a digital layer, called D.OS for domestic operating system, that connects users to their home through the Internet.
Everything in the Openarch house is connected and can be used to communicate. Through the internet connection, any device such as a mobile phone or tablet can access, control, and monitor data, temperature, appliances, lighting, power usage, and social media. With an emphasis on flexibility, Kinect-based gestural interfaces and video mapped projections can also control the same elements as well as moveable walls and a customizable wallpaper projection.
Openarch’s software and hardware will be documented, registered, and available for download under creative commons licenses. Thinkbig Factory describe the project as “an inhabited playground where related technologies can be tested” and open the laboratory to other companies, artists, and organizations to evaluate their products and services.
At present, the physical design is fully implemented while the software is at about 20 percent. Thinkbig Factory’s Ion Cuervas-Mons tells FastCompany, “Only the gestural interface and the custom wallpaper application are working. There is still a lot of work to be done.”
Images: Thinkbig Factory