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text 2014-02-08 02:11
Abney and Abney Associates Green Solutions - Smart home technology systems make consumers more energy efficient

Abney and Abney Associates Green Solutions, Smart home technology systems



You’re leaving work early one afternoon so you go online and adjust the thermostat to preheat your home. After dinner, you load the dishwasher and it decides the best time to run based on the availability of renewable energy and cost. On your way to work the next morning, you forget to lock the house and turn off the lights but you pull out your smartphone and set the house to “away” – problem solved.


After years of hype, home control and automation products are gaining speed, enabling these types of scenarios in what marketers call the smart home. The most dramatic validation of this trend was Google’s $3.2bn acquisition on 13 January of startup Nest, which makes a thermostat and smoke detector that are connected wirelessly to a home network. Given that Google is often a technology trendsetter, the move will likely accelerate the development of smart home technologies.


Retailers, too, are stepping up their home automation efforts. At the annual consumer electronics conference, CES, in January, US-based retailers Lowe’s, Home Depot and Staples each expanded their smart home offerings by forming partnerships with technology providers and ramping up their in-store marketing.


Staples intends to expand the number of stores where consumers can view a display of home automation products designed to work together, including remote-controlled thermostats, door locks, blinds, lights and security cameras. Each connects to a wireless hub in the home, allowing people to use a smart phone app to control each device.

Source: britzyball.bravesites.com/entries/general/abney-and-abney-associates-green-solutions-smart-home-technology-systems-make-consumers-more-energy-efficient
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text 2014-02-03 01:38
Abney & Abney Associates Green Solutions - Life span of KSA buildings 25 years



The average life span of buildings in the Kingdom is between 25 and 50 years, as against 100 years in other countries, said Talal Samarkandi, head of Jeddah branch of the Saudi Council of Engineers (SCE) and board member of Al-Umran Saudi Association. Samarkandi attributed the short life span of buildings to such factors as poor design and implementation, absence of regular maintenance work, and low level of building materials and usage.



“There are many methods and techniques for buildings which are bound to raise their virtual life span, depending on the materials used in the green building methodology, recycling the building materials, and counting on an accredited engineering office to supervise construction and maintenance works,” he said, adding that all these factors help the landlord to safeguard his investment.  He urged Jeddah Municipality to form a committee entrusted with the task of inspecting the dilapidated, vacant buildings in old neighborhoods as these may fall down and injure passers-by.



Hamad Al-Shagawi, chairman of the board of directors of the SCE, said the buildings that were constructed in the early eighties are better than some of the buildings being constructed these days. “Now we find cheating and fraud in the raw materials such as iron and cement to the degree that some buildings collapse during construction itself,” he added.



He stressed the importance of regular maintenance of buildings, good quality work, and following comprehensive methods of construction. “This will even increase its market value in the long run,” he added. He said that any building constructed more than 50 years ago will need repairing, not maintenance. “With the available modern techniques and methods the process is easier now,” he said.

Source: www.abneygreen.com
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