Missing App: Household Monitoring

My dream “missing App” would help me better manage my home with technology.  Business related? No, not directly. But as most professionals trying to balance both family and business know, the last thing we pay attention to are these finer details. Here’s an example: When was the last time you changed your furnace filter? (I know… me too).

So clearly taking a few of these tasks mobile, and letting us manage them remotely, either at the office or on the road, wouldn’t be a bad thing.

My top three tasks would be:

  1. Tracking ongoing energy consumption — Gas -vs- electricity – what’s the current commodity pricing? And when should I engage the gas furnace over the electrical heat pump?  Ideally, that decision could be automated, and triggered based on set numbers. Kind of like this; but woven into a larger household management system.
  2. A big list of standard household tasks with a reminder function — The furnace filter example would be my first entry. Or maybe in November,  Siri can say “Hey, the Christmas lights are going up next month, you need new bulbs?” A positive response would add another item to my NTP monitoring system (see the next item).
  3. Need to Purchase” monitoring — It might be overkill to put a bar code scanner in the pantry, but with all the iOS devices in my home (pod-pad-phone)… the convenience factor alone would make product scanning a possibility.  Grocery lists would only be one element here, though. A larger tickler system based on my house, and my purchase patterns (prior years, preferred stores, etc) could be factored too.

Obviously, I can continue building my lists. But there’s bigger problem: I don’t always know what to put on the list, or worse, I hate dedicating time to build these lists in the first place.  I’d like something smarter, interactive, and maybe even a little proactive, to simplify the process.

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boat props Mercury

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