DESIRABLE FEATURES FOR THE KEY ELEMENTS OF HOME AUTOMATION SYSTEMS
WHAT INTELLIGENCE ?
Intelligence is a basic element for every home automation system. It performs actions and constantly monitors the state of devices. It typically resides in dedicated electronic systems and it can be either distributed or centralized. Intelligence should have the following features:
As it is the brain responsible for the management of the whole building, it’s reliability is mandatory. Even the damaging of a little part of it could compromise the operation of the system. Reliability is then the very first feature it’s necessary to look for in the selection of the building automation system. For these reasons Shineforce adopts electronics from industrial automation where machine downtimes must be avoided in any way as their costs could be not sustainable
AVAILABLE OVER TIME
Devices that represent the intelligence of the system should be available over the time and easy to find, possibly worldwide. Unfortunately, very often, devices used for the intelligence of home automation systems are realized using dedicated electronic boards produced by small companies that cannot ensure the availability of their products over decades. Shineforce instead adopts for its intelligence devices from industrial automation made by world leader companies. This is an essential warranty in order to avoid nasty surprises in the future
FLEXIBLE, EXPANDIBLE AND UPDATABLE
Intelligence needs to be flexible in the way it must be ready for different purposes. In addition it should be fully expandible in order to meet future requests and then easily updatable. Buildings are constantly evolving through tecnological improvements and user needs may change over the time. A flexible intelligence can ensure the integration of new features in the future. Many of the automation systems available in the market suffer from this point of view as electronic devices are design for today use and not intended for a broader purpose. Shineforce intelligence has been designed to achieve over-sized performances in terms of speed, memory and expansion capability. All of this ensures to be in step with the times and will remain so in the future
WHAT USER INTERFACES ?
Interfaces are those devices users adopt to actively interact with their houses and buidings. From interfaces users can control everything and get the exact state of each light, shutter, sensor, household appliance and any other device connected to the system. Interfaces constantly communicate with intelligence via wired or wireless connections. Let have a look at which feature they should have:
EASY AND INTUITIVE TO USE
User interfaces should have an attractive design and must be easy and intuitive to use. Too often interfaces are too small and hard to use. Complex user guides must be read to achieve the desired functions and this represents a strong limit in the daily use of many home automation systems. Shineforce is based on beautiful user interfaces extremely easy to use. We don’t need any user manual at all !
VERSATILE AND OF EVERY DAY USE
An interesting feature for user interfaces must be versatility. In other words, user interfaces should be used for several purposes. For this reason, common devices as smartphones, tablets, TVs represent great examples of versatile interfaces that can be used not only to control the home automation system. Furthermore the usage of common operating systems (Android, iOS, Windows) achieves the easiest way to learn how to interact with your domotic system. Unfortunately there are many systems that use proprietary interfaces with their own operating system and that prevents to have multiple apps running on the same device reducing then drastically the chances for the integration of other functionalities. Shineforce instead can be controlled and managed from smartphones, tablets, TVs, PC and so on: that is fundamental to control your house when you are far away from it. Moreover beatiful in-wall touchscreens of different sizes are available. They can be customized on user design needs becoming the heart of the house and the family.
Some fundamental features such as scenarios and timers must be present in a professional home automation system and it’s important they can be managed directly by the end user. Shineforce is one of the few that make possible to do this and much more !
WHAT WAY TO COMMUNICATE ?
When we speak about home automation, communication protocols are the most difficult to figure out. To better understand the role of this key element let imagine this situation: you have to switch on or off from remote an household appliance for example the dishwasher. We know that it’s pretty simple to cut the power but it’s not so obvious what happens it will be supplied back. Will the dishwasher correctly restart from the point it was stopped? What is missing to achieve a smart control of the appliance? It’s the use of a common language (the communication protocol) that must be shared between home control system and the appliances, so that they can “talk” each other. And then the second question is what features this communication protocol should have? We think it should have an open and widely used one. And that is the choice we’ve done with Shineforce and here below those points are detailed better.
OPEN TO INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS
Communication protocols should be open and wide used among the world. This will guarantee full integration with existing devices and very likely with the ones will be developed in the future. Furthermore you’ll not be forced to buy devices like switches, sensors, interfaces, etc. of a specific brand: you’ll be free to chose among all the producers to find what you need and prefer
HIGH PERFORMING AND VERSATILE
A communication system should have high performance in terms of bandwidth and speed. Furthermore it should be very versatile as nowadays it’s fundamental to exchange different type of data such audio, video, multimedia and home automation. We can say that there’s only one standard leader in the world that perfectly fits all these requirements: ethernet and its wireless version, Wi-Fi. This is why Shineforce adopts this standard since 2002 for its communication protocols. With this choice we achieved a performing control both locally (when you are at home) and remotely (when you are far)
Security represents a key challenge in all communication and data exchange. This goal can be achieved with sustained efforts from all producers and pofessionals. Communication systems must be designed to face any kind of cyber attack while preserving performances. For these reasons Shineforce adopts different strategies to keep potential intruders away