A decade ago, when Interior Architects and Interior Designers would follow a traditional process of providing a proposal by breaking down various layouts of the property, the position of furniture and fittings, choice of raw materials and placement of support gadgets / appliances etc. A proper software generated blueprint was provided to the client.
This is not enough anymore!
Today, smart home technology has seeped into every house. It has forced interior architects and designers to fine tune their planning and strategy by incorporating these elements during the designing process itself. This has in turn has transformed the way projects are coordinated and accomplished. The idea is to coalesce or fuse them with traditional constituents. Mentioned below are some of the new technologies that architects for smart homes take into consideration during the preliminary or design stage –
1. IoT or internet of things has taken over the world. This also includes homes, and therefore laying out / installing smart wiring, sensors and systems early on is one of the essential steps towards designing a smart home.
2. Energy efficient and eco-friendly concepts are on the rise. Open-space designs, weather and mood sensitive devices and smart fittings are some of the examples.
3. Entertainment, computing and kitchen equipment and devices demand special attention vis-à-vis smart technology. Once again, their provision during the early stages of the design process is important so that all the elements fall into place as one seamless, cohesive unit.
So, what exactly is smart technology? What are some of the application areas? Here is what Ar Milind Pai of “Architects Mumbai” have to say –
Energy Conservation –
Let us begin with the outside first. Facades are no longer an enclosure made of coloured glass panes that offer aesthetic value to a house or a commercial building. It has evolved with time and today it has turned into one of the smart elements. These frontals or window dressings manage heat and energy resources, adjusting the inside temperature based on the outside ambience and weather conditions. Smart facades are sustainable, power savers that protect the environment by reducing carbon footprint.
Fluid Design Concepts – Mark of the Best Architects India
With the advent of smart technologies, interior design layout too has evolved. Homes no longer have strict, disciplined or fixed sections. For example, with just a few button clicks or taps on a mobile screen, a study can transform into a living room or even an office space. Smart television sets slide out from behind eco-friendly hidden or visible partitions while intelligent and programmed lighting changes the ambience with a simple hand gesture or dedicated interactive device. Computing devices turn into a communication and business control centre allowing occupants to scan, print, converse and supervise people and projects remotely, and all this from a small section of a smart house. However, it is the underlying infrastructure that makes it work and interior architects have to plan for the same.
Heath & Happiness –
Top architects and designers like Ar Milind Pai also plan occupants’ health and happiness. What? Is that even possible? The answer is yes. This is achieved by embedding synergetic, intelligent and sensor based devices that measure pre-set humidity factor, reduce dust and manage personalised temperature in various sections of the house. It results in a cleaner, healthy and stress free ambience. Moreover, equipment such as smart treadmills and wearable devices provide inspiring prompts and reminders when it comes to working out or providing health parameters. Provision, placement and installation of these smart equipment needs add-ons and supplementary systems which is also the job of a progressive interior designer / architect.
Safety & Security –
Ask architectural firms in Bombay like ‘Milind Pai Architects’ and elsewhere, and they will confirm that this is yet another area where interior architecture has been impacted greatly. Mechanical locks are now passé. These are replaced with smart locks or digital locks which are a blend of strength and biometric technology. Embedding them is quite easy, but controlling and managing its functions requires careful planning and complementing infrastructure. It is the latter part which demands attention. The same applies to security. Fire and smoke alarms, smart front door remote cameras and crucial shut-down systems are some of design domains which are evolving in terms of technology and impacting interior architecture.
If fluid partitions, multi-functional, intelligent furnishing and fittings and eco-friendly materials offer aesthetically pleasing homes, smart devices turn the same into a sustainable, efficient, inclusive and safe habitat. Smart homes are made of smart gadgets, devices and technologies and it is this amalgamation which is impacting architecture in a big way.