>Smart home liv­ing

Nick Odantzis loves the gar­den, with or with­out tech


There’s a funny thing that oc­curs at this time of the year. In the mid­dle of Spring, when the weather is start­ing to get its warm and sunny hat on, the world out­side starts call­ing my name. And it’s say­ing: “It’s a nice day, get out­side, put down that cell you’ve been play­ing with and stop wor­ry­ing about all that smart home stuff you’ve filled your house with!” Sud­denly, ev­ery­thing I’ve worked hard on im­prov­ing on the inside of my home over the last six months — whether it’s mak­ing my heat­ing easy to con­trol from a smart ther­mo­stat or ask­ing Siri on my HomePod to turn on all the lights as soon as I get in from work in the evening — be­comes less in­ter­est­ing. And, well, just less rel­e­vant re­ally.

The win­ter is hard on the soul, more so for those of us with SATD (Sea­sonal Af­fec­tive Tech Dis­or­der), so smart home gad­gets help to fill that cold and dark void, with the prom­ise of a bet­ter qual­ity of life, with light and warmth to keep us happy. But once the weather gets nicer, just step out­side, en­joy the heat of the sun on your face and crack open a can of that light and hoppy craft beer that you’ve been sav­ing for the right oc­ca­sion. You don’t need any of those gad­gets, or do you? If this month’s Home Life fea­ture is any­thing to go by, then once the smart home sea­son comes to an end, the smart gar­den sea­son begins.

While you might think that the gar­den is the last place you’d want to be messing with gad­gets, I’ve found there is a place for them — within rea­son. Hon­estly, I still get a bit of a kick from mow­ing the lawn the good ol’ fash­ioned way be­cause, heck, it feels pretty damn good to do so.

But then I don’t have an es­pe­cially big gar­den to tend to. What I do have a lot of is plants, and when it gets re­ally warm in the mid­dle of sum­mer, I’d rather be drink­ing more of those ice cold brewskis than spend­ing an hour each evening wa­ter­ing my gar­den with a reg­u­lar hose. So, I’m all for a smart sprin­kling sys­tem that takes out the hard work that I don’t ac­tu­ally en­joy. That’s the thing with the smart gar­den, as it is with the smart home — when a gadget takes away the need to do some­thing that I don’t ac­tu­ally en­joy do­ing, or makes a task eas­ier to do, then I’m all for it. When it’s there just for the sake of it? I’ll pass. That said, we’re all dif­fer­ent, and one per­son’s idea of fun is another’s idea of hell. So go ahead, out­fit your gar­den with gad­gets if that’s your thing. If not, life is still pretty good.

Win­ter gad­gets take a back seat in sum­mer

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