The Smartest Smart Inventions
Smart inventions and smart technology are those that take everyday items and apply new technology to solve a new problem or make the product more energy efficient. There are many smart inventions that have been created over the years. The best inventions depends on what your needs are with many of these inventions only being used by a small number of consumers. However some inventions, such as smart glass that can be used for privacy or to control light, have been embraced in industry and the home and used extensively.
Smart Glass for Beverages
Smart glass is one type of the latest smart inventions. This glass is meant to take the heat out of holding a cup of hot beverage. This invention is actually a tumbler that is made of a glass that stores all of the heat from the hot drink or coffee as the drink cools. This way the heat does not come in contact and burn hands. The glass takes the heat and then stores it as electricity using thermoelectric semiconductors. Each cup has a meter on the side that provides information on temperature. This allows the individual to avoid burning their mouth and drink the hot liquid at a comfortable temperature. The stored energy can be switched from a heat collection mode to a heat spending mode as it can heat up a cold beverage.
Another type of smart glasses is those that use LCD technology to block glare. These can be considered smart sunglasses known as “dynamic eyes”. The lenses are actually LCD screens that contain light detecting sensors in the frame. Different areas of the lenses can then be blocked out to reduce glare. These glasses were developed specifically for those that have issues driving and are sensitive to light. It may also have military applications.
Another version of smart glass is smart glass that are used for automobile windows, buildings and other glass use. Specifically this glass is electrically controlled for privacy. When electricity flows through the glass the liquid crystal molecules that are used to make up the glass become aligned which allows light to pass through, producing a clear, transparent pane of glass. However when there is no electricity flowing through the glass then the molecules return to a randomly scattered pattern which creates and opaque sheet of glass providing privacy.
Smart glass for windows in the home allow for individuals to brighten and dim the light that passes through the glass panes. These windows are like the glass used for privacy. The glass will originally have a tint to it that limits the amount of light that passes through the glass. By flipping a switch the tint is turned off allowing more light in. On very sunny days you can flip another switch and the glass can slowly darken or become opaque to limit light. There are many different types of glass that can do this such as photo chromic technology, like sunglasses that change tint automatically based on light. Some require electricity such as those described previously for privacy glass. Another type of technology uses suspended particles found between two panes of glass which create a liquid film. Regular windows can be turned into smart glass by using smart films that are applied to the regular glass.
Other Smart Inventions
A few other smart inventions that do not necessarily rely on smart glass include the smart thermostat. This thermostat speaks wirelessly to the furnace and other appliances to let the home owner know how much gas or electricity is being used. It can also control the temperature of the home to reduce power consumption. An accidental smart invention is smart dust. This invention was created by a doctoral student that found that a burst silicon chip still functioned as sensory. These teeny tiny sensors can be used to detect hazardous chemicals, monitor seawater and drinking water and to locate tumors in the body. Another smart invention is the smart bullet. It fires like a bullet but the bullet does not explode until it is told to. This uses air burst technology that came out of the army advanced technology demonstration program. Each bullet contains a microchip that can register distance based on how much they rotate. This way soldiers can fire over or past walls that shelter enemies, which is particularly useful in urban areas.