Couch potatoes can expand their control reach far beyond the TV, controlling whole house audio, lighting, HVAC and security, as well as their home theater systems. Remote Technologies Inc. offers a variety of handheld and in-wall controllers, transceiver modules and system processors that can be integrated into a range of products. The units communicate using the ZigBee standard. Wireless communications are handled by Ember Corp.'s EM250 ZigBee controller and EmberZNet PRO networking software. RTI's color touchscreen remote control helps keep management simple so users can focus on relaxing.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.