It’s almost a no-brainer that technology will continue to occupy an ever-expanding space in our future, but what could this mean for homeowners – and home builders – here in Elmhurst? The Microsoft Corporation recently unveiled its updated “Home of the Future”, now christened the Envisioning Center. Interactivity is everywhere. Here are some examples of what the tech giant thinks we can expect to see in our homes in the coming decade.

The new Center offers insights into how Microsoft thinks about the development of its products. The “home” is focused on bringing people together, helping us learn, and uses natural gestures, speech and touch to accomplish tasks. For example in the kitchen, via a digital whiteboard, an interactive chef walks you through preparing a stir-fry for dinner, right down to alerting you that you’re using a pan that’s too small for the task. In the living room, Grandma is reading an interactive story with her grandchild in her own living room six states away. In the office, you work on a draft document on your tablet, and then move it to appear on a huge interactive wall screen so that you can collaborate simultaneously on it with someone halfway around the world. Spaces are more open and flexible letting us move seamlessly between tasks and recreation. Natural user interface (NUI) and machine learning are key components of the home, as is the ability to synthesize huge amounts of data.

This new Microsoft facility is not open to the public, but the corporation did hold an open house for the media. You can see video of it from the BBC below. The facility is a bit of a double-edged sword in that it does offer a glimpse of the technological possibilities to come, but it is also a showcase for the products and services that Microsoft wants you to buy. Craig Mundie, Senior Advisor to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, spoke of the likelihood that the technology on display here will actually come to pass. “We never guess completely right. But we were probably closer to right than wrong in each succeeding generation.” He also referred to the digital picture frame, which was a feature displayed in earlier versions of the home that has since come into widespread use.

A home is probably the single biggest investment many of us will make, and it’s not surprising that we wonder what innovation is on the way that will potentially increase its value and make it more suited to our individual lifestyles. In the meantime, all of us here at The Gracik Makinney Group are ready to help you find a property that suits your needs today. Stop by the office at 190 North York Road here in Elmhurst, or give us a call at 630-441-5570, and let’s get started on your real estate future.

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