MSI Smart Home Features Smart Interior Design Ideas
A new profile about “Chicago’s greenest home” was published in Inman News this week, written by Mary Umberger, a longtime follower of the local housing market and reporter of Chicago real estate stories. In her latest piece, she delves into the world of state-of-the-art gadgetry and ground-breaking green construction with a visit to the Museum of Science and Industry’s “Smart Home” exhibit. One tour of the premises opens your eyes to amazing technology and environmentally-friendly furnishings you never knew existed and may be the future of residential redecorating.
For starters, there’s the computer screen bathroom mirrors. Sure you can see your reflection in them, but you can also check the weather and traffic, and see Facebook updates with the click of a remote. Pretty impressive! Another wow factor in this Jetson-like household is the kitchen command center with its electronic grocery list and virtual “post-it note” messages from cell phone texts. The Smart Home also has an automated system that regulates the interior environment for maximum energy efficiency. It tracks hourly utility usage and can adjust accordingly. Just imagine in your own home if the lights knew when to turn on or off based on sunrise/sunset times. Or if shades automatically opened or closed to help maintain room temperature. Now that’s the next generation of creature comforts!
Yes, the Smart Home has some super cool, ultra-modern devices. But the theme of this year’s makeover is “old meets new”. With that in mind, the space was redesigned with several reclaimed and repurposed items. Such as the used cabinet in the living room which served half a century as a mail repository in an Illinois post office. The metal cabinetry in the kitchen hails from the University of Chicago, where they were salvaged from a laboratory. Some of the furniture is made of recycled materials as well (although you’d never know it) like the living room chair upholstery that’s fashioned from old tires.
It may be awhile before “tire chairs” and computer mirrors are considered sought-after amenities in a property, but the forward-thinking décor at the Smart Home is definitely something to take note of. There may come a time when these novelties become mainstream, and Chicagoans will have had a first look at what tomorrow’s living spaces hold through this futuristic showcase of revolutionary new (and old) interior design.