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Why Kitchen applicances should be networked.

September 15, 2007

I’ve managed to get the two clocks within 2 seconds of each other, which actually made taking this photo a pain, but it will take hours to improve on 2 seconds and to make matters worse there is a third clock that is not shown in the picture. I know that 2 second delay is going to drive me nuts. Luckily the oven and microwave have options to hide the clock but I would prefer not to.

What is clearly needed is for them to either network amongst themselves and run NTP to keep their clocks in sync or if an external network is available get the name of an NTP server from DHCP and use that. I suppose they will need a cheap, free operating system to embed to control it. OpenSolaris anyone?

So please can we have that? I’ll ask NEFF and see what they say. It’s just a shame that unless they can retrofit it we will not be able to take advantage of this in our new kitchen.

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From → General

4 Comments
  1. This is why I always try to get mechanical or pseudo-mechanical appliances even if they cost more.
    It would be pretty neat if I could pick the receipes I wanted to use, and the appliances would create a dynamically optimized coreography of what to put where and when at what heat levels, to have everything cooked at the same time. Maybe not worth the pain of it going awry, though.

  2. One thing is timers, but your post made me think about going even further…
    My kitchen is a bit far off to the back, so that if I forget something on the stove, by the time the smoke drifts far enough for me to catch it, it is too late. I’m thinking a camera pointed at the stove and couple of temperature probes could help. Other ideas could be to automate shopping lists by scanning barcodes as things go in and out of the fridge (not a new idea, but still good).

  3. Knut permalink

    Having synchronized clocks would be nice, but there are more things going wrong in the household. Yesterday i realized that the clock of my windows machine where 20 seconds wrong. It was synchronized 4 hours ago. Since this is my VCR i don’t like the time running away at this rate.
    To me 2 seconds seem to be fine for kitchen machines.
    BTW.: The Windows VCR is synchronized by a cheap Solaris machine (250 EUR without storage) without internet connection. It needs a month to run 20 Seconds away.

  4. This reminds me the I’m very glad my car’s clock is in sync with my car’s stereo clock. I remember that wasn’t the case only a few years ago.

    Hopefully, kitchen appliance companies will learn from car companies in the future.

    Perhaps the real fix would be to develop a clock module that speaks all the right embedded appliance protocols and that comes with auto-negotiated time-by-broadcast-or-NTP _and_ is cheaper than all the other clock modules. I realize this is an oxymoron but it’s Sunday, so I’m allowed to dream and this also points to the root of all evil: Appliance companies seem to only build in the cheapest clock components possible…

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