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505 comments

01753 567100 (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220911)

Now, cue the various comments complaining about this 'home of the future' just because Microsoft did it. It would be interesting to see what sort of thing Apple, Sun or Novell could come up in comparison ..

More information on the Microsoft home is available here [mini-itx.com] and here [microsoft.com] .

Oh, and .. first post?

Re:01753 567100 (4, Funny)

macshune (628296) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220933)

"The house of the future has no bathroom.
And I really have to go."


Sorry, please install Service Pack 1b for the crapper.
Have a nice day.

Re:01753 567100 (4, Funny)

cscx (541332) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220976)

Apple: The house would be see-through.

Sun: The house would look like absolute shit asthetically, but it'd be stable, and never be able to be knocked down.

Novell: I don't know, but there'll be a lot of guys in black ties and white shirts ringing the doorbell.

Re:01753 567100 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220991)

Haha. Good stuff.

Question though: Why are you on Perens' foes list?

Re:01753 567100 (4, Funny)

neuroticia (557805) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221037)

Heh. Actually, AppleHome would be see-through and striped, and come in all the colors of the rainbow or a cool titanium finish that would scratch and dent. =] You could only have 1 or 2 Rooms in it (5.25 bays), but the Rooms would do everything (Superdrive/combodrive) You'd only be permitted to run AppleHomeOS on it, until someone came out with LinuxHomeOS For the AppleHome. AppleHome users would account for only 10% of the population, but would be MUCH more vocal about their love of the AppleHome than MS users.

And if you used something in Beta, you'd erase your bedroom (iTunes, Safari)

It would definitely have better aesthetics than Microsoft-Home, though. Eeek.

-Sara

Other companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221021)

Fortunately the "other companies" can't oblige because THEY'RE TOO BUSY WORKING!

Re:01753 567100 (3, Insightful)

Starman9x (634099) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221023)

hmmm... yes, it is easy to dis it "just cuz microsoft did it", and to be honest, I'm not as thrilled today about that prospect as I would have been in, say, 1985 or so -- that was when I was just out of high school and thinking of all sorts of similar/neat things I would eventually want in my house. At that time I would not have cared whether it was "apple" or microsoft" or even "radio shack" that "implemented" them [things like a recipe lookup/display set up in the kitchen for instance] The "star trek" aspect of voice recognition [and subsequent on-the-fly voice output that "makes sense" would be insanely cool as well]

But, the sad fact of the matter is that the "world has changed" since I was a young idealistic college freshman, and mircosoft, rightly or wrongly, has taken a position that differs from my "ideals" -- I'm the type that likes to tinker under the hood of the program, and I don't see Microsoft making all that easy to "tinker" when "the house of the future" does come around.

Starman9x

p.s. (of a sort) there are several mentions of "Disney" in the article, as in the dark-ride/automated event type rides, but she missed the most obvious "Disney" parallel -- The Smart House" [ifilm.com]

Re:01753 567100 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221034)

Yes .. Just the same as how your television, radio, microwave and so on are difficult to tinker with, I'm sure.

Re:01753 567100 (1)

Autonymous Toaster (646656) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221057)

Now, cue the various comments complaining about this 'home of the future' just because Microsoft did it.

Though I don't run Microsoft firmware, I agree that there's no point being knee-jerk (plus I don't have those either). Like it or not they're going to keep doing things in the world, so we may as well evaluate them honestly for what they offer, or at least for their effects on our lives. I hope we can all agree that an automated kitchen can be a good thing.

Nonetheless in this case it seemed to me at first that this house was mainly designed to make people better little consumer automatons (hah!). The mention of making instant soup in the microwave was particularly galling.

However, I then came across the segment where the kitchen instructs the householder in making foccacia bread - from scratch! This is really an example of how increased technology can make life better. I know I wish I had a piece of freshly baked foccacia in me right now. Mangia, mangia Will Robinson!

So there's good with the bad. Yes, it's Microsoft, and it'll probably throw a tantrum and spread flour all over the flour sometimes (I could tell you stories), but there seems to be some thought given to actual quality of life in this home, instead of just buzzwords and marketable-looking ideas. I think that's a good sign.

Is this really necessary? (4, Insightful)

Motherfucking Shit (636021) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220913)

From the article:
Based on the biometric scan performed earlier, the house already knows who is there. So a list of Heath's favourite programs is displayed on screen. The show will pick up where she left off the last time she sat down to watch TV. The TV also has a message about grandma. According to the television, she is having a "normal day." Heath explains that the message is part of a larger system envisioned for senior care. Sensors in a retirement home, she explains, would monitor her activities to make sure everything's okay.
Not only is this a bit over the top in my opinion, I also think it's downright scary. One company - gee, I wonder which company - with access to information about when you come in the door, how long you're at home, what time you leave, who stopped by while you were out and left you messages on your "doorbell notepad" (and perhaps the text of those messages)... And not only do they know all of this about you, they know all of this about grandma and are able to report it to you on your TV set. If they can send it to you, who else can they send it to? considering the security track record of certain companies, who else might have access the info without anyone even realizing it?

Some of the tech outlined in the article would be convenient, I'll admit to that, but I just can't get comfortable with the idea of such an obvious and intrusive data-mining capability. My home is my sanctuary. It's one of few places - OK, these days it's the only place - where I feel I have any privacy. I wouldn't give that up, not even for convenience. Reading over the article, my primary reaction was "just because we can, doesn't mean we need to."

I mean, seriously. If I want to know how grandma is doing at any given moment, I make a phone call; and if something happens to her, the nursing home calls me. The most anyone else can discern from this is that I'm calling a nursing home, or vice versa. With this "home of the future," I have an awful vision that as soon as the TV tells me that grandma has passed away, I'd suddenly start getting bombarded with commercials for casket makers and funeral homes.

Aside from the privacy issue, I'm not so sure that the "smartness" of the system wouldn't get annoying. The article mentions that when the lady of the house comes home (identifying herself by a retinal scan), the lights come on and music starts playing because the house "knows" that's what she likes. What if she's in a bad mood and she doesn't want all this mojo going on? The TV supposedly knows what program listings to display when she turns on the TV, because it knows she's the one home. What if I'm home, too?

I dunno. I can imagine a lot of possible snags with this and I've only been thinking about it for two or three minutes...

Re:Is this really necessary? (2, Interesting)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220964)

Man, chill out. The demo described is just a proof of concept. It's designed to show all the various technologies that are, or will be, available. I don't think anybody expects that every house will have every feature.

Biometrics for entry? Pff. I have no problem whatsoever with the current key-and-garage-door-opener system.

Taking messages at the door? Nobody comes to my house unannounced anyway.

Barcode reader in the microwave... maybe. I'm not much of a TV-dinner kind of guy, myself, but that might almost be useful. Maybe. If you're in college, and your dorm room is so equipped. Maybe.

Re:Is this really necessary? (1)

Newander (255463) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221047)

If they build it. You will come.

Reality TV! (3, Funny)

litui (231192) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220979)

Forget Big Brother or Survivor! Now we have Grandma TV 24/7! Watch Grandma gum her oatmeal! Listen in on Grandma's steamy phone calls! Find out who's really stealing the pennies at those poker games!

All this and more, brought to you by Microsoft.

Re:Reality TV! (1)

D+iz+a+n+k+Meister (609493) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221049)

Or maybe the next voyeurdorm?? www.voyeurnursinghome.com

There's a money maker.

Re:Reality TV! (1)

litui (231192) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221056)

LOL. In this crazy world, I'm thinking it's probably been done or is in the works already, scary as that may be. =p

Re:Is this really necessary? (5, Insightful)

MillionthMonkey (240664) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220985)

Not only is this a bit over the top in my opinion, I also think it's downright scary. One company - gee, I wonder which company - with access to information about when you come in the door, how long you're at home, what time you leave, who stopped by while you were out and left you messages on your "doorbell notepad" (and perhaps the text of those messages)... And not only do they know all of this about you, they know all of this about grandma and are able to report it to you on your TV set. If they can send it to you, who else can they send it to? considering the security track record of certain companies, who else might have access the info without anyone even realizing it?

Unless the PATRIOT Act is repealed before these homes are built, "who else" means the federal government. Commercial entities are obligated to respond to subpoenas and are forbidden to even disclose the fact that they snitched on you.

Once terrorism surrenders, we'll be back to normal.

Re:Is this really necessary? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221032)

>Unless the PATRIOT Act is repealed before these
>homes are built, "who else" means the federal
>government"

No kidding. The article says

"As we exit the tour, I noticed a dozen people waiting their turn. Gruver tells me the facility is booked solid from Monday to Friday. But not just anyone can sign up. Most of the people who come through the home are government officials, company partners and press."

Spelling: "Tomorrow" not "Tommorrow" (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220914)

spelling error.

Boogah (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220915)

booga

uhhhh (1, Funny)

majestynine (605494) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220916)

New comment creation has been disabled on this discussion.

Looks like slashdot have found the solution for getting rid of all these trolls.

Disable comments.

Way to go chrisd.

Re:uhhhh (1)

ruprechtjones (545762) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220955)

whew, I thought it was just me. I've never seen slashdot do that before.

The bathroom? What for? (4, Funny)

red_gnom (545555) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220918)


Come on guys, the windows is all you will ever need.

It is not like Slashdot without "Reply" button.

The toilet from hell! (3, Funny)

Wrexs0ul (515885) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220997)

They're just waiting for the:

Hyper-
Accelerated
Loo

Model 9000, keeps freshness in and those nasty guests who stink up your place out.

"I'm sorry, I can't let you poop that Dave..."

-Matt

Attention (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220919)

Who needs a bathroom when you can shit all over Microsoft's latest and greatest?

I'll be the first... (5, Funny)

skermit (451840) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220920)

I'll go ahead and be the first to make a potty joke...

Where do you want to "go" today?

*snicker*

and just in case you're against the Wintel water closet, here's the oldschool iToilet:
http://www.electric-chicken.co.uk/ [electric-chicken.co.uk]

Or another funny by John McPherson:
http://cutlerscove.com/cartoons/images1/bathroomco mputer.jpg [cutlerscove.com]

Fellow /.'er Dragon213 posted this last December:
http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=47736&cid= 4874656 [slashdot.org]

and last but not least, Philips has a home of the future design speculation website:
http://www.design.philips.com/casa/bathroom/frames .html [philips.com]


Re:I'll be the first... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221013)

Where do you want to "go" today?
Well, the submitted item mentions that Microsoft did set up "easy targets."

Re:I'll be the first... (4, Funny)

m0nkyman (7101) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221055)

I do NOT want to see a "blue screen of death" in my toilet; You have performed an illegal function...

toilets (1, Funny)

macragge (413964) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220921)

What do you do when your toilet blue screens? Jiggle the handle?

Re:toilets (1)

D+iz+a+n+k+Meister (609493) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220967)

Get out the plunger.

Where's the reply button? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220922)

So is this a new thing, not having the reply button show up for a couple mins after the intial post?

-Psy

Next Generation Secure Housing Base (1)

trmj (579410) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220923)

The alarm on this house says "Please step away from the front door. No, a little to the left. Pay no attention to the gaping window with nothing watching it whatsoever."

Be glad they didn't (1)

xpurple (1227) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220924)

Just think of what it would look like if the toilet crashed :)

aww... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220926)

no works of art that change to your liking [imdb.com] when you enter the room? what kind of home is that?

Cripes! (0, Offtopic)

Icephreak1 (267199) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220928)

Damn you, first poster. I was sitting here just waiting for Slashdot to release the thread for replies. Seems they set a timer on the reply action so as to not open the discussion up right away.

Ah well, no biggie. Second post!

- IP

Second post?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220944)

YOU FAIL IT!

No bathroom (4, Funny)

intermodal (534361) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220929)

I guess that's for consistency...windows leaves all kinds of shit all over your system, so why not your house as well?

IN THE SOVIET UNION (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220930)

IN THE SOVIET UNION the bathroom goes to YOU!

First SovRus joke to make me laugh! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220963)

We need a new moderation option for "+1: Yes, it's a damn Soviet Russia post, but it's actually funny"

Re: IN AMERIKA (1)

The_Dougster (308194) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221025)

Im Amerika das scheissenpapieren ist bergotten uns des UberMarketten mit dein plastchekarten.

the solution to productivity (2, Insightful)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220931)

"A large number of people think (the solution to) productivity has been solved," explains Thomas Gruver, group manager for the Center for Information Work.

Man, those Microsofters really do live in a different world. On what planet do they find people who think that they've got that productivity problem taken care of?

no bathroo? because... (4, Funny)

skydude_20 (307538) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220935)

its not a bathroom, but a recycle bin. it can go for awhile without emptying, just until you fill up a certain percentage of the house that you allow. actually, each partition of the house has one, though reliability can be flakey at times, oddly sucking away at all the other resources of the house (electrical, water, etc..). though for the most part works, but keeps you forever wondering why they call it a recycle bin

The toilet is on the way... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220978)

There is going to be a Waster Disposal Service Patch for the house of the future. :-)

Good-Bye Cynthia McKinney!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220937)

Good-Bye Cynthia McKinney!!!

We Georgia southna's may be a complacent bunch, but when you raise our ire, you best WATCH OUT, girl!

Have fun at your Morehouse professorship, or wherever you may find employment, working on daddy's clients?? HAHAH

BUH BYE

Troll 199 of 208 from the annals of the Troll Library [slashdot.org] .

New comment creation has been disabled on this dis (2, Insightful)

l810c (551591) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220938)

They're givin us an hour to think up dump jokes.

Ready...

Set...

GO!

I guess we'll be takin the crash dumps in da kitchen.

Be honest, how many times have you hit refresh since the article was posted?

Re:New comment creation has been disabled on this (1)

heytal (173090) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220982)

No.. Now they want all the first posters to actually READ the article before saying "First Post" !!

BTW, on a serious note, is this really the case ? and is it going to be a regular affair, or was it a technical glitch ?

Re:New comment creation has been disabled on this (1)

skermit (451840) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221000)

God I hope so, it gave me time to find all the funny links that I thought the rest of the .'ers would appreciate. It's a shame when good comments don't get a viewing because in the first 30 minutes, 300 comments of goatse.cx have been posted and modded down, and and people are reading the same 25 >2 posts. That is IF they're reading at >2.

Re:New comment creation has been disabled on this (1)

ruprechtjones (545762) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220994)

yeah, but at least this time I went and read the article. Maybe it's /.'s new RTFA timer...

Re:New comment creation has been disabled on this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221006)

About once every five seconds for ten minutes .. so .. mmm-mmm .. about 200 times I reckon. It worked out well though!

This is amusing, if scary... (0)

Montreal Geek (620791) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220939)

I can't help but think about features of the MS home: fairly user friendly, looks very nice... but given MS's track record on security and reliability I'm not sure I'd trust my front door to them.

And there is something scary about the prospect of having to reboot your home once every so often.

What happens when a toilet crashes? :-)

-- MG

Home of the future (4, Funny)

drmofe (523606) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220940)

No shit!

Holy Crap (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220941)

I got my dick stuck in my dog... again.

Re:Holy Crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220966)

That's odd .. I got my dick stuck in your dog too. Are you sure that's your dog?

Re:Holy Crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221030)

WTF are you guys doing to my dog??

Oh great... (4, Funny)

Arctic Dragon (647151) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220943)

Now where am I gonna put all my bathroom reading material?

Re:Oh great... (2, Interesting)

l810c (551591) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220973)

This home beams porn on the walls.

Wait till the power goes out! (5, Insightful)

fuzdout (585374) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220946)

All cool till you have several generations of people who grew up with this stuff and know no other way of life and all of a sudden a big wind storm and the power is *OUT*.

Generators would be even more necessary than now :)

No toilet? (2, Funny)

Yottabyte84 (217942) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220947)

It's a demo house. Would you want people trying out your toliet? And what about the customized toliet "reading material" hmmm, I think not.

Oh, and why was comment creation disabled for half an hour? New slashcode feature.

All that shit... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220948)

and now where to get rid of it. tsk, tsk

PDF is already used for online forms. (1)

Gibbo (3044) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220949)

"..with the right rules set up in software many standard contracts could be quickly approved via computer assuming all the fields are filled in correctly."

Hardly new and innovative there. It's already been possible with PDF for a long time.
In fact government departments in Australia use PDF for electronic forms.

It's an obvious answer, but... (0)

jeeryg_flashaccess (456261) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220950)

after all, do we really want Microsoft to have that much control over things?"

I think I speak for every /.er out there when I say very cleary, and most definately...Yes. We WOULD like Microsoft to have that much control over things.

Senior care.. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220952)

The TV also has a message about grandma. According to the television, she is having a "normal day." Heath explains that the message is part of a larger system envisioned for senior care. Sensors in a retirement home, she explains, would monitor her activities to make sure everything's okay.

Oh yeah, I would love to sit down to watch CSI, and be greeted with Mom fell and broke her hip, has bed sores, and vomited during bingo.

ugh..I think I'll pass on something like that.

Shells (1)

cscx (541332) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220953)

Wouldn't the bathroom of tomorrow have the three shells? [angelfire.com]

Thank goodness (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220959)

I don't want to have to wait for Microsoft Toilet XP to boot up. When I have to go, I have to go!

I also don't want it to tell me that I've performed an illegal action and must be shut down.

In The Home of the Future... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220960)

Script kiddies will be able to turn off your fridge, lock your doors and get root on your toilet. That's assuming, of course, that The Home of the Future is as secure as current Microsoft products. If you ask me, having your entire home run on a network that will probably be accessable from the Internet is a Bad Idea. A very, very Bad Idea.

Oh, and there's the usual Big Brother concerns. Musn't forget those.

chrisd is a nigger (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220961)

Lynch him before it's too late

He fucks up more stories than anyone else. X-Files spoilers, need I say more?

WMD (1)

heytal (173090) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220962)

This is nothing but a hidden attempt by microsoft to create Weapons of Mass Disruption !!

Imagine a virus which can bring down your house and your microwave and your toilet :-)
Would the United States take unilateral action on corporations propagating technology which can be used as WMD ?

Ultimate Recycler (1)

soliaus (626912) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220965)

Well, it looks as if bill gates has finally decided to admit he is a composter.
I wonder how those veggies taste...

Closed due to damage (1)

supun (613105) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220968)

I've heard that had to close it down due to a large amount of damage caused by two mice trying to get a piece of cheese. Even the robot janitor has quit.

This is a common occurrence with "Houses Of The Future". Prior to this it was two dogs trying to get a bone.

what?!?!?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220969)

>

Not just no, but HELL NO!!!

Great! (1)

Latrommi (615673) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220970)

All of the home's basic functionality is available in a pocket PC-turned-light-switch.

Just what I want...to try to turn the lights on and realize that the light switch has blue-screened.

Only microsoft.... (3, Insightful)

havardi (122062) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220972)

Can you imagine trying to read a recipe overlaid upon the ingredients you are trying to cook with? Maybe display it on the wall or something, but to imagine your worksurface limited in such a fashion and call it convienience is simply absurd.

Islam (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220974)

By NICK PARKER

HOOK-handed cleric Abu Hamza last night GLOATED over the shuttle disaster and rejoiced in the deaths of the seven astronauts.

The Muslim fanatic called the Columbia crew "thugs of space" who deserved to die.

He denounced the team -- made up of Americans, an Israeli and an Indian-born Hindu -- as a "trinity of evil" punished by Allah.

The 45-year-old cleric said they were "criminals" bent on boosting military satellite technology so America could dominate the world.

He claimed it was a sign from God that debris rained down on a Texas town named Palestine.

Hamza -- banned from preaching his hate-filled sermons at London's Finsbury Park mosque -- said of the tragedy: "This was a divine act, a message for mankind."

His rant caused outrage across Britain, in the grieving space communities of Houston and Cape Canaveral in the US and in Texan counties littered with wreckage.

Here, angry Muslims led renewed calls for Hamza, who lives in Shepherd's Bush, West London, to be kicked out of the country.

Inayat Bunglawala, of the Muslim Council of Britain, said: "He does not possess a scrap of human decency. How dare he gloat over a tragedy like this."

Dr Ghayasuddin Siddiqui, leader of the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain, said: "He continues to hurt the cause of Muslims."

Shadow Home Secretary Oliver Letwin called Hamza's remarks "monstrous, appalling, despicable and outrageous".

He added: "All sensible people will be amazed someone can engage in such blatant incitement without anyone laying a finger on him."

Labour MP Andrew Dismore branded the cleric sick and said: "The sooner we get rid of him the better."

At Florida's Kennedy Space Center, shocked Nasa spokeswoman Kandy Warren said: "Oh my God, that is horrible."

Hamza was blasted by British tourists laying flowers there.

Jonathan Bancroft, 31, from Newport, South Wales, said: "I can't believe our taxes are keeping this man. He is scum."

Palestine's mayor George Foss accused Hamza of spouting "horrific nonsense".

And local café owner Judi Summerville said: "He is the monster, not the astronauts."

Vinod Patel, leader of Houston's Hindu community, said: "I would use his hook to attach him to the next shuttle and blast him into space."

The American victims in Saturday's disaste were Rick Husband, 45, William McCool, 41, Michael Anderson, 43, David Brown, 46, and Laurel Clark, 41.

Indian-born Kalpana Chawla, 41, and the first Israeli in space, Ilan Ramon, 48, also died.

ba-boom (1)

majestynine (605494) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220975)

Microsoft dont need toilets because they already shit on the users.

FERAL (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220977)

By John Zerzan

Fer-al adj. wild, or existing in a state of nature, as freely occurring animals or plants; having reverted to the wild state from domestication.

We exist in a landscape of absence wherein real life is steadily being drained out by debased work, the hollow cycle of consumerism and the mediated emptiness of high-tech dependency. Today it is not only the stereotypical yuppie workaholic who tries to cheat despair via activity, preferring not to contemplate a fate no less sterile than that of the planet and (domesticated) subjectivity in general. We are confronted, nonetheless, by the ruins of nature and the ruin of our own nature, the sheer enormity of the meaninglessness and the inauthentic amounting to a weight of lies. It's still drudgery and toxicity for the vast majority, while a poverty more absolute than financial renders more vacant the universal Dead Zone of civilization. "Empowered" by computerization? Infantilized, more like. An Information Age characterized by increased communication? No, that would presuppose experience worth communicating. A time of unprecedented respect for the individual? Translation: wage-slavery needs the strategy of worker self-management at the point of production to stave off the continuing productivity crisis, and market research must target each "life-style" in the interest of a maximized consumer culture.

In the upside-down society the solution to massive alienation-induced drug use is a media barrage, with results as embarrassing as the hundreds of millions futilely spent against declining voter turnout.Meanwhile, TV, voice and soul of the modern world, dreams vainly of arresting the growth of illiteracy and what is left of emotional health by means of propaganda spots of thirty seconds or less. In the industrialized culture of irreversible depression, isolation, and cynicism, the spirit will die first, the death of the planet an afterthought. That is, unless we erase this rotting order, all of its categories and dynamics.

Meanwhile, the parade of partial (and for that reason false) oppositions proceeds on its usual routes. There are the Greens and their like who try to extend the life of the racket of electoralism, based on the lie that there is validity in any person representing another; these types would perpetuate just one more home for protest, in lieu of the real thing. The peace "movement" exhibits, in its every (uniformly pathetic) gesture, that it is the best friend of authority, property and passivity. One illustration will suffice: in May 1989, on the 20th anniversary of Berkeley's People's Park battle, a thousand people rose up admirably, looting 28 businesses and injuring 15 cops; declared peace-creep spokesperson Julia Talley, "These riots have no place in the peace movement." Which brings to mind the fatally misguided students in Tiananmen Square, after the June 3 massacre had begun, trying to prevent workers from fighting the government troops. And the general truth that the university is the number one source of that slow strangulation known as reform, the refusal of a qualitative break with degradation. Earth First! recognizes that domestication is the fundamental issue (e.g. that agriculture itself is malignant) but many of its partisans cannot see that our species could become wild.

Radical environmentalists appreciate that the turning of national forests into tree farms is merely a part of the overall project that also seeks their own suppression. But they will have to seek the wild everywhere rather than merely in wilderness as a separate preserve.

Freud saw that there is no civilization without the forcible renunciation of instincts, without monumental coercion. But, because the masses are basically "lazy and unintelligent," civilization is justified, he reasoned. This model or prescription was based on the idea that pre-civilized life was brutal and deprived-a notion that has been, amazingly, reversed in the past 20 years. Prior to agriculture, in other words, humanity existed in a state of grace, ease and communion with nature that we can barely comprehend today. The vista of authenticity emerges as no less than a wholesale dissolution of civilization's edifice of repression. which Freud, by the way, described as "something which was imposed on a resisting majority by a minority which understood how to obtain possession of the means to power and coercion." We can either passively continue on the road to utter domestication and destruction or turn in the direction of joyful upheaval, passionate and feral embrace of wildness and life that aims at dancing on the ruins of clocks, computers and that failure of imagination and will called work. Can we justify our lives by anything less than such a politics of rage and dreams?

A cure to productivity! (1)

tuba_dude (584287) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220980)

"A large number of people think (the solution to) productivity has been solved..."

Beautiful! Somebody has finally found a cure for this neferious disease.
OR
Has somebody solved the proof of productivity (solution being solved and all that)?

Of course there is no bathroom (1)

MrLint (519792) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220986)

(joke first then comment)

They just assumed everyone was gonan piss on it anyway;)

</this commentis not pro-microsoft>

No Loo? (1)

Ratso Baggins (516757) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220990)

So I guess the MS user would be "full of Shit"

Fancy that?!?

Let's put this together with MS's rep for security (2, Funny)

carlmenezes (204187) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220992)

Conversation between 2 burglars :

"Which house shall we pick?"
"I've already chosen one. It's running Windows Home Edition"
"But those have biometric scanning"
"Yeah. A buffer overflow will take care of that"
"I don't think so." (busy trying to hack into the wireless LAN)..."seems they've patched it"
"Rats! I didn't want to do this. The home owners don't deserve it, but here goes...send in Slammer..."

"Dear Apple" (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220993)

Dear Apple,

I am a homosexual. I bought an Apple computer because of its well earned reputation for being "the" gay computer. Since I have become an Apple owner, I have been exposed to a whole new world of gay friends. It is really a pleasure to meet and compute with other homos such as myself. I plan on using my new Apple computer as a way to entice and recruit young schoolboys into the homosexual lifestyle; it would be so helpful if you could produce more software which would appeal to young boys. Thanks in advance.

with much gayness,

Father Randy "Pudge" O'Day, S.J.

xxx (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5220995)

xxxx xxxxx xxxxxxxxx wwww wwww eeeeee rrrr tttttttt qqqq

what about the geek's bathroom of the future? (1)

cel4145 (468272) | more than 11 years ago | (#5220999)

wouldn't it feature an mp3 player for the shower with karaoke setting?

or how about a large flat panel display readable from both the john and the whirlpool bath with voice activated mouse controls for reading online and watching video?

might want to skip the vid cam :)

"day-to-day family life is made easier . . . (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221001)

with microchips."

Yo! Microchip. Go get me a beer and don't give me none o yo back talk.

You know, I've been trying for years, but I still just can't figure out what's so hard about twisting that little rod thingy to adjust my miniblinds. It's simple, easy, quick, effective, mechanically simple and dosn't raise my electric bill.

I don't *feel* like a Luddite.

KFG

textmessage : Grandpa pooped! (5, Funny)

hmccabe (465882) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221003)

Some have already been tested in senior centers. It's still in the early stages of development, but such a system isn't entirely a fantasy

Speak for yourself, lady, but my fantasy isn't monitoring seniors all day.

If Microsoft Made Cars.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221008)

1. Every time they repainted the lines on the road, you'd have to buy a new car.

2. Occasionally your car would just die on the motorway for no reason, and you'd have to restart it. For some strange reason, you'd just accept this, restart and drive on.

3. Occasionally, executing a manoeuvre would cause your car to stop and fail to restart and you'd have to re-install the engine. For some strange reason, you'd just accept this too.

4. You could only have one person in the car at a time, unless you bought a "Car 95" or a "Car NT". But then you'd have to buy more seats.

5. Amiga would make a car that was powered by the sun, was twice as reliable, five times as fast, twice as easy to drive - but it would only run on five percent of the roads.

6. Macintosh car owners would get expensive Microsoft upgrades to their cars which would make their cars go much slower.

7. The oil, engine, gas and alternator warning lights would be replaced with a single "General Car Fault" warning light.

8. People would get excited about the "new" features in Microsoft cars, forgetting completely that they had been available in other cars for many years.

9. We'd all have to switch to Microsoft gas and all auto fluids but the packaging would be superb.

10. New seats would force everyone to have the same size butt.

11. The airbag system would say "Are you sure?" before going off.

12. If you were involved in a crash, you would have no idea what happened.

13. They wouldn't build their own engines, but form a cartel with their engine suppliers. The latest engine would have 16 cylinders, multi-point fuel injection and 4 turbos, but it would be a side-valve design so you could use Model-T Ford parts on it.

14. There would be an "Engium Pro" with bigger turbos, but it would be slower on most existing roads.

15. Microsoft cars would have a special radio/cassette player which would only be able to listen to Microsoft FM, and play Microsoft Cassettes. Unless of course, you buy the upgrade to use existing stuff.

16. Microsoft would do so well, because even though they don't own any roads, all of the road manufacturers would give away Microsoft cars free, including IBM!

17. If you still ran old versions of car (ie. CarDOS 6.22/CarWIN 3.11), then you would be called old fashioned, but you would be able to drive much faster, and on more roads!

18. If you couldn't afford to buy a new car, then you could just borrow your friends, and then copy it.

19. Whenever you bought a car, you would have to reorganise the ignition for a few days before it worked.

20. You would need to buy an upgrade to run cars on a motorway next to each other.

stupid preface to a useful topic (0)

micjordan (133489) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221009)

the stupid preface "Microsoft's Home Of Tomorrow Has No Bathroom" has completely taken away any chance of there being useful conversation on this topic now. way to go morons. leave it to the slashdot crowd to completely fuck up a good thing with their incessant bitching and ranting.

So this means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221015)


instead of using a crowbar to break in, i just need to poke out Bill Gate's eye?

"In Soviet Russia" with a twist (-1, Offtopic)

El_Smack (267329) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221016)


In Microsoft America, house takes dump on YOU!

it's x10.com, right? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221018)

a few little hacks, a couple of spy cams^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hhome automation devices, and i'm totally in the house of the future.

Point to point to rant (4, Interesting)

josh crawley (537561) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221019)

Ugh. Microsoft house. Other than the obvious "Security comments" and pissNshit
jokes, lets get down to some seriousness. And by the way, what's with ChrisD NOT allowing comments on creation??

---Visitors to the house can leave a message via the touch-screen monitor built
into the exterior wall or record a message if no one's home.

What?? We already have voice intercomms, and some have a rudimentary X-10-like
cam in there. Other than being a node on a network, what's soo special? Hell,
I've even speced up a security network using Linux and such tools. ...demonstrates how a resident might enter using a retinal scanner instead of a
key. Any such biometric screening device could be used...

Retinal, yeah, but what about "Any biometric device"? If it's a hand print,
gelatin (thanks to the japanese guy who 'found' it out). And to beat ANY
biometric crap, all you need is the following:
Eyes : Spoons
Hands : Saw, axe...
Face shape: Axe and cutting block... (eww)

Point is that biometric doesnt matter. A key would probably stop that unnessary
dismemberment.

---All of the home's basic functionality is available in a pocket
PC-turned-light-switch...

Yeah, and we can trust the wireless protocols? We cant even trust the 802.11
encryption people, let alone MS for security. Who's to know that you could walk
near and hijack a house computer system?

---It's like Web TV and a personal video recorder combined (add~~ read email
wherever)

Why would you want a tether like a PDA to haul around the house to control basic stuff? The last thing is to be harassed by email for this and that when my girlfriends over. Hell, I WANT CONTROL OVER EMAIL only when I'm sitting at my computer. I could give a shit less. And if it's really important, they'll call.

And about that TV setup... Soo it's like MythTV?

---would monitor her activities to make sure everything's okay.

And how would we prevent that those same sensors wouldnt be in a non-invalid
house? Any audio/video sensor (read nearly everything) is that kind of sensor.
If I'd have that kind of hardware, it'd be on a NON-INTERNET'ED network, with no physical connections to any network, with exception to the phone line. And that would be only for emergency phone calls (like fire sensors in roof have been set off...).

Another thing is this auto-cooking shit. I wouldnt expect any computer can give
reasonable instructions on how to cook. Cooking's an art, mastered by those with
experience. How can some 2 bit computer deal with recipe substitutions cause you dont have that one good it demands? Or will it DEMAND KRAFT CHEESE when you
bought that slab of american for 1.4$ per pound? Computers should follow MY
rules, not the other way around.

---All of the computer displays in the future house will be hooked up to a
central computer that coordinates their activities. This is critical for
broad-based features such as homework lock-down, which parents can use to
disable TV, music and other home entertainment until the schoolwork is done.

Uhhh, cant that already be done with X-Windows and cron jobs?

And of course, you gotta have that SoHo stuff for those never-off-the-clock
business users. That's a slashdot article in all its own. Still, all this GPS
here, Voice analysis there and add yet more buzzwords.

Point: There's tons of stuff in any house that you dont want ANYTHING taking
control of, with the exception of the person there. I sure dont want some
windows security system that goes in lock-down mode whenever the cat jumps
around knocking some book down, or have it call the fire department on a bad
computer cooking stint. And what about errors? There's tons of bugs in this
kind, no, ANY kind of system on this magnitude. I wouldnt trust ANY OS, even
Linux to take care and log every little transaction in and out of my house. And
the last thing I want is a transaction log that some law enforcement agency can
download if they have the certain e-signature allowing such search and seizure.
The supreme court has shown that they dont care for our rights.

Oh well, this has turned from a objection by point to a obnoxious rant. This is
just stuff that I worry about when "shit from the future" happens to be
partially true. It makes me think that there's actually a way to stop it.

No bathroom? Allow me to offer: (1)

mattACK (90482) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221026)

The eToilet. [theonion.com] Where do YOU want to go today?

Its a criminals dream (1)

PhillipC (611524) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221041)

Hack into a home's computer system, and know exactly who is in the house at any given time as well as when each family member is expected home. Talk about convenience.

IMHO, BAD JOURNALISM (1)

xo0m (570041) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221042)

"The house of the future has no bathroom.
And I really have to go...There's a fully furnished front hall, foyer, living room, bedroom, kitchen and dining room: all tweaked with future tech. But no porcelain throne...The lack of loo is amusing, but understandable..."

if ur gonna make a point, stick to it. don't concede to microsoft that toilets arent necessary in a "futuristic model" just because its a "model".

i'm sure there are plenty of tech toys to add to the restroom...has anyone ever seen the home improvement "man's bathroom"? it'd be nice if they built upon that and included it because, hey...we need restrooms!!! if not, please direct me to the M$ powered outhouse...lets hope the toilet doesnt...crash ;)

Wellcome Home Bob! (5, Funny)

TheLoneCabbage (323135) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221044)


Imagine walking home... it's been a long day.

As you enter, you are greeted by a warm Muzac entry sound. "Welcome Home" It chimes in an even, an unoffensive voice.

As you walk in, you are followed by wall mounted screens delivering custome tailored advertising. Who knew I could grow another 6" safely and without any effort?

You hang up your coat and you are chimed by a tone, that says "Thankyou for using MS coat rack" Ding!

You go to the kitchen to put away groceries, but before you get there a 6 foot holographic paper clip stops you. "Your grand mother is not eating her food. Do you wish to feed her"

"No it's ok, I'll talk to her later Mr. Clippy"

"Are you SURE you dont' want me to feed her. It's not healthy for her not to eat"

"She's made it 80 years on her own Sir, she knows when to eat"

"Older peopler need to eat, human, or they could starve!"

"Fine, what ever. Give her some food"

You can hear sounds of mechanical arms wurring in the distance, and an old woman screaming... ugh just another bug.

You go to put away the food, but as you insert some fruit and turn around, you see it spit out of the fridge. "What now?!"

"This fruit is not compatible with this refridgerator"

"It's a banana you talking box of ice, just take it"

"MS Fridge 3.1 does not recognize this typen of fruit. Are you sure you want to store it in MS Fridge?"

"YES!! I want to store it in MS Fridge!!"

"Open the door manualy to continue."

You put away the rest of the food, with only a few more discussions regarding the unlicensed eggs, which aparently were not grown at McMSoft Farms, and therefor do not have the correct nutritional value. And the fit the cubbard through over you buying flower... It insists that MS Breads are a more efficient use of your leasiur time.

As you go to the TV, you realize that you won't be watching TV tonight since all that's on is the BSD show.

Sudenly out of nowhere a lazer shoots you inthe pocket and burns a hole, destroying a tape you had in your pocket. "Hey!! what was that?"

"You were carrying ilegaly coppied music. I have corrected the issue for you."

"It was a mix tape from a friend!!"

"All copyrighted materials must have digitial copy right signitures, or they may be stolen. You don't want to steal do you?"

"It's from his band you nit! Never mind, I'l just go take a shower"

You dissrobe (hoping the computer isn't watching this time) and turn on the shower.... ICE cold.

"Computer turn up the heat, please"

"The heat is on"

"No it's not, it's freezing"

"The watter is hot at 37 degreees"

"In Celcius!!"

"Error: Unknown variable.... Reporting bug.... Bug fix will be available when you upgrade to MS House XP: The Next Generation"

You scream into the night as you run naked into the woods, trying to escape the MS Tree 3000's (better greener foilage). You find your self a nice cave and grow hemp in the field. Not because you like hemp, but because you heard it causes memmory loss, and you want to forget.

"Microsoft's Home Of Tomorrow Has No Bathroom" (1)

Trikenstein (571493) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221045)

No Shit? /bow

Re:"Microsoft's Homo Of Tomorrow Has No Bathroom" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221059)

That was pretty good...

sorry for this but it has to be said. (1)

xeniten (550128) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221048)

"Microsoft's home of the future was reminiscent of a Disneyland tour, their model office has Epcot center nailed."


That makes sense considering both companies are mickey mouse operations.


*insert rimshot here*

Slashdot Articles of Tomorrow Force You To Read (1)

teamhasnoi (554944) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221051)

I love the new feature! While waiting to post "In Soviet Russia Your House of Tommorow Has No Toliet Paper" or some bit of fall-out-of-your-chair, LOL!!OLO!MFG! hilarity, I actually *read* the story.

I read the whole thing.

A whole new world has opened up to me! I can make intellegent comments that are ontopic! I can rationally discuss the issues! I can send a Fax from the Beach!

And the people that will bring it to me? A&chrisd!

Just like in Star Trek (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221052)

It really is accurate!

Not exactly an E-ticket ride (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 11 years ago | (#5221053)

Interesting, but I think I'd find a lot of the features more annoying than useful.

Obligatory Bathroom Humor (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5221054)

Wow...all that technology and no place to log in!
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