Perfect example of a Technotronic Zombie [Video]

University of California student investigated for turning digs into high-tech ‘smart’ home

BRAD: Derek outside his ‘Berkeley Ridiculously Automated Dorm’. Credit: YouTube

Mark Prigg, Science and Technology Editor
03 May 2012

A US student who turned his room into a computer controlled ‘smart home’ is being investigated by University bosses after posting details of his project online.

Derek Low, who studies at the University of California at Berkeley, filled his room with sensors and computer control systems, with voice-activated lights and even an “emergency party button” which triggered lasers, smoke machines and strobe lights.

The video of his project became a hit online, leading to Low receiving a notice from resident hall officials to appear at a judicial hearing.

He estimated the “Berkeley Ridiculously Automated Dorm” (BRAD) project, which took several weeks to build, only cost around £300.

“Most of BRAD was simply easy and straightforward, as long as you’re resourceful,” Low said. “It took me the most time to get the voice recognition to work, and implement a setup for automating the curtains.”

The video shows Low controlling his dorm room curtain and lights with a wireless remote, apps on his iPhone and iPad, and even voice recognition through his laptop.

He even created a “romantic mode” which dims the lights, triggers a disco ball and plays Elton John’s “Can You Feel the Love Tonight”.

The room also works as hi-tech alarm clock, turning on all the lights, drawing back the curtain and blasting Justin Bieber’s “Baby” from music speakers.

“There’s simply no way you can sleep through that without your ears bleeding,” Low wrote on his website.

Following the request from University officials, Low said he is planning to move.

“I’m moving out the dorms in two weeks and moving the entire setup to my own apartment,” Low said. “The whole system is quite mobile, actually, so that won’t be too difficult.”

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