Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Smart Fridge2

My twist on the "Smart Fridge"
 
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Well I have actually drawn out a few sketches on my take of the Smart Fridge, and although there are a few previous smart fridge's new technology dictates a better posting.

To start with, the fridge would have a large touch screen lcd on the front panel, this would be obviously for display and input purposes. Secondly, there would be RFID sensors inside and outside (i.e. a remote one placed in pantry to detect all foods in pantry) to detect all foods and other RFID sensors (explained later). Next, we'd have a Wi-Fi card in the back for integration into the home network (this will allow the fridge to use your existing computer for computing power, there would also be a model for those without computers, which would have of course a mobo/processor/memory/etc). Next, it would have an interface to link up with other kitchen appliances such as the oven, dishwasher, microwave, etc. The last major component would be either an integrated speaker/mic or BT/wi-fi connection to an existing speaker/mic (home stereo, computer, personal, etc.).

Now that we have the components listed, lets list the ways these components and a little quality programming would help out your life.

-The Fridge would sense all food in it, now when this food is purchased and placed in the fridge, it would ask you the expiration date (i.e. you place a new milk in it, it would then say "please say or input the exp date of the "One Gallon 2% milk"")

-The fridge would link up with a database of recipes, or access recipes on personal computer, or recipes inputted into the fridge... then as you select a recipe for that day, or the week, or month, the fridge would tell you if you have all of the products you need, or if you have any products that expire before you plan to cook the recipe, or would warn a user if they begin to use something that is needed for a recipe (i.e. you plan to cook french toast in the morning, and another user starts to take the eggs out, the fridge would say "please make sure there are at least 4 eggs remaining for the french toast recipe tomorrow morning" The fridge could also walk you through a recipe, say, as you cook, it would call out what quantities of a ingredient you need, and if you forget something (it would sense what you have removed, placed back in the fridge), it will remind you, it would then integrate with the oven and preheat the oven as you get close to the end of ingredients, and start a timer once you place it in the oven.

-The fridge could warn a user when he/she leaves something out. For example, you take the milk out to put in your ceral and then go to watch tv in the living room as you eat. The fridge would know that the milk has been out of the fridge for more than 5 minutes and warn the user that they need to place the milk back in or risk having it spoil.

-The fridge would use it's link with the oven and stove to keep a fire from occuring by taking note that the oven has been on for over 2-3 hours without being opened/closed. It would then prompt the user to confirm that the oven is in use, if no confirmation is given within 5-10 minutes, it would cut the oven off.

-The fridge could keep food from going to waste by alerting the users a couple days before the food expires. For example if you have a steak or chicken in the meat tray that is set to expire in 2 days, the fridge would ask you if you would like to use the ckicken/steak before it expires. It would then suggest recipes that you have used in the past, or new ones that use the amont of meat you have. It would then add that recipe to your meal schedule.

-The fridge could keep track of you food intake while at home and suggest a shopping list when it is time to go shopping.

-The fridge could have "programmable" RFID tags that you can place on, for example, leftovers. After your meal, you place the leftovers in a plastic container, and place the RFID tag on it (or it could already be existing on it), you then wave it in front of the fridge and program that tag as leftover chicken that will go bad in 2 days. The fridge will then place that leftover chicken on your meal schedule before it goes bad.

-The fridge would have a "Task Center" built in which syncs with any existing email/calendar/task program. This would be customizable with options to alert you to a new email, sound alarms for upcoming items on calendar, display task that are due.

-The fridge would have an optional second display that can be mounted near the entrance/exit door, or bedroom, so that you can check all necessary information as you leave/enter, or when you go to sleep/wake up.

-The fridge would be able to network with other fridges in the neighborhood, for example, if you are pretty close with one of your neighbors and you frequently borrow things from them, you would then be able to have your fridge check with their fridge to see if they have any spare, say, sugar that you can use. The other fridge would then ask their user for permission to send it's information about their sugar, they would confirm, and your fridge would then tell you that they do in fact have some spare sugar available, and to go pick it up whenever you can.

-The fridge would also serve as a TV, this is of course already implemented on a couple fridges already.

-The fridge would be able to send your shopping list to your printer, or place it on your palm/pocket pc for use while shopping.

-The fridge would be able to "reccomend" meals based on your previous selections, along with other factors such as ingredients that are healthy for you, the right portions, or foods that you are lacking that are essential to your health.

-The fridge would be able to display reports such as your total calorie intake for the day/week/month/year, along with details of your food intake for viewing or printing to take to your doctor.

-Search feature: The fridge would be able to display all foods in it's inventory, and if you needed to find something you simply select the food and the fridge will tell you where it's at, for example, you can't find the mustard for anything, so you ask the fridge "locate mustard" and you get the reply of "mustard is located on third shelf" then you finally see it behind the milk and OJ.

Phew... I have plenty other ideas on what the fridge could do, but I think yall get the idea.....

ZebProctor, Dec 25 2004

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       Hi, nice write up.The health of the citizens should be the number one priority in the city.   

       I mentioned once before here about a mini-train set connecting all houses' kitchens and people just eat 'off the line'/send food down the line.   

       I just made a grant application for a world food video inter-connection. Your system sounds corporate. The present food distribution system is intent on reducing our choice of foods and transporting them from as far away as possible. It's difficult to find this evidence but it is there.   

       There is no loyalty to brands any more. I'll look for the link to a recent Wired magazine article on this. It's "What have you done for me lately? Where's the best deal?" The only best deal your grocer is looking for is for himself. So an extension of your video/internet world-wide connections is to? That's all missing in your presentation.   

       Did you read the last statement of the departing US head of Health? He's totally surprised that all the food has not been a target yet. So maximus is telling you to go micro.   

       In closing, farm communities are in shambles everywhere. Your idea doesn't even touch the source of your fantastic food. It also does not have enough negative feedback loops.
mensmaximus, Dec 25 2004
  

       The fridge would cost about $10000 for the low-end consumer model?   

       I see that LG has a refrigerator in the stores now with an LCD panel. It might just be a TV though. I haven't paid that much attention to it.
half, Dec 25 2004
  

       I scrolled down this for a good half hour fully expecting this to bea Vernon idea....
energy guy, Dec 25 2004
  

       Yeah the LG is just a TV.... and I don't see it costing over $2000 for a low-end model... that's assuming $1000 for the fridge, $500 or so for the extra components, and $500 for the R&D.....
ZebProctor, Dec 25 2004
  

       So has anyone on here ever developed one of their ideas? Any success stories? I did see where Visa awarded some guy $25,000 to develop the "emergecy PIN" idea, didn't know if it was the guy that posted it here, or someone ripped him off.
ZebProctor, Dec 26 2004
  

       It's all in a state of flux.
mensmaximus, Dec 26 2004
  

       State of flux? Are you trying to say it depends?
ZebProctor, Dec 27 2004
  

       There are people here who develop their ideas in to actual inventions, though not necessarily ideas that they post here.
half, Dec 27 2004
  

       Ah, I guess once I'm around for a while I'll be able to tell the people who are serious about this from the "jokers"
ZebProctor, Dec 27 2004
  

       ZebProctor, I hope you see a difference in your idea flow now that you know there are so many opinions. One of my first ideas here, just a month ago is looking for grant funding so I don't describe it so well for my competition but I have given everyone here a glimpse of my ideas. It just sounds weird, (er than my words), when someone says they have an idea but it is vest pocket. Try that in a bull pen at a real estate office. I have 35 unfinished proto-types in the next room waiting to stare me down, take all my time, ruin my health. I hope inventors with tunnel vision learn well from this site.
mensmaximus, Dec 27 2004
  

       where are you from maximus?
ZebProctor, Dec 27 2004
  

       Any of the features could obviously be turned off if they are causing more harm than good.... and about the calorie thing, there would be a spot to input the amount of food you eat that the fridge cannot track (i.e, ate one cheeseburger from mcdonalds, and 20 oz of pepsi)
ZebProctor, Dec 28 2004
  
      
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