Microsoft Wants to Turn Your Home Into a Laboratory

Illustration for article titled Microsoft Wants to Turn Your Home Into a Laboratory

Microsoft has plans for your home: with its new Lab of Things, it wants to suck up data from around your home so you can probe, analyze and experiment to your heart's content.


The new beta software links together physical data, collected from sensors scattered around your home, with Microsoft's Home OS house automation software. If you want to run an experiment—analyzing and controlling sensor data and settings in your home (or elsewhere...)—the idea is that Lab of Things will provide a simple backend for you.

The data is sucked up from your home and stored in the cloud—and so experiments can be tweaked from anywhere, even your phone. It's not just tied to your home, either, because the cloud-based nature means you can share data amongst other users, perhaps even extending experiments to your entire neighbourhood or town.


It's both a great way into basic analysis and experimentation for beginners and enthusiasts who can't really code, and could also free up time for more hardcore scientists who'd rather spend their time considering data than writing code to acquire it. The system's free to use while it's in beta. But be warned: the license doesn't allow for commercial use. You can grab the beta Lab of Things SDK here. [Microsoft via All Things D]

Image by nrkbeta under Creative Commons license

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Here you go tinfoil hat wearers and future-phobics..


Who owns data generated from my field studies?

You own this data. You also own your own deployment and participants. All study related data generated as part of your deployments is accessible only to you in your own Windows Azure Storage account.

Microsoft collects monitoring data from Lab of Things deployments as a service to you so you can monitor your deployments and studies via the Monitoring Portal. Data collection and usage in this case is guided by the Microsoft Research Privacy Statement"