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The pandemic has thrown us into a tizzy but there is one thing that hasn't slowed - our collective march toward “smart” homes. That means being able to control stuff at home through our devices - like door locks, garage door, thermostats, home security, and even turning on the coffee maker on cue.

Heck, we don't even have to get off the couch to do any of this. Alexa and Google are always listening...always! Which is why I obsessively unplug Alexa when we don't need her.

The sticker shock of replacing an analog appliance still makes us reach for a defibrillator but the opportunity to elevate the smartness level offsets some of the angina. It’s not like we are going out of our way to pick smartness. In many cases, the replacements are already smart.

On a positive note, it is reassuring to use the phone to check the front door on the umpteenth walk of the day. And we all agree that a ready cup of coffee after a long day of zooms sounds fabulous.

Recently, Humera and I were enjoying a glass of wine in the kitchen when Tarun unexpectedly spoke to us from a distant location through the Ring camera next to us.

He FREAKED us out!

We indulged him politely for a few minutes and then told him that we would unplug the device if he sneaks up on us again :)

The transition to smartness offers a mix of excitement and anxiety. It leaves us vulnerable if we don't do the right things with authentication and privacy settings and, heaven forbid, if we lose our phones. Plus, we are still in the early days with these devices and they definitely have issues - like our Ring base station interferes with our Nest thermostat.

That's like having bickering kids at home again, ugh!

This journey frequently make us feel unsmart but we are committed to the transition to digital out of fear that we will get left behind and overwhelmed in a few years.

In the meantime...

Dear Family - a coffee maker I can control through my phone will be an awesome xmas gift. Just saying.

(Pic from the net)



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