At Beijing Games, Haier washing-machine spin

"Making the World a Home" Experience Center will take visitors through 16 hours in the life of a consumer using the appliance manufacturer's U-Home (Ubiquitous Home) technology.

Haier Experience Center
Haier's bubble-shaped Experience Center in Beijing also serves as a giant screen where evening light shows will highlight the company's history and environmental-protection efforts. Haier

In between attending track-and-field events and trying to locate uncensored Web sites , visitors to the Beijing Olympic Games will be able to experience a day in the life of a futuristic-home dweller.

China-based appliance manufacturer Haier on Wednesday opened the doors to its "Making the World a Home" Experience Center in Chaoyang Park, Beijing. The center, which will be open to the public for the duration of the Summer Games, will take visitors through 16 hours in the life of a consumer using Haier's U-Home (Ubiquitous Home) technology, which relies on the Internet, mobile communication, and fixed telephone networks to let users communicate with their home appliances anytime, anywhere.

Haier's vision of such a day will look something like this: In the morning, while the consumer is exercising, the jogging machine will monitor his pulse rate or energy consumed. When he leaves home, U-Home technology will automatically shut down the lights and rev up the security system. Back home in the evening, the intelligent bed will recognize when the consumer is ready to turn in, and it will shut down the lights and the television, and close the curtains.

The bubble-shaped Experience Center also serves as a giant screen where evening light shows will introduce Haier's history, Olympic sponsorship, and environmental-protection efforts . The entertainment area of the center will offer virtual sport games that let visitors test technology by Haier, which is also an official white-goods sponsor for the Beijing Olympic Games.

Click here for CNET News' package of stories on tech and the Beijing Olympics.

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About the author

Leslie Katz, Crave's senior editor, heads up a team that covers the most crushworthy (and wackiest) tech, science, and culture around. As a co-host of the now-retired CNET News Daily Podcast, she was sometimes known to channel Terry Gross and still uses her trained "podcast voice" to bully the speech recognition software on automated customer service lines. E-mail Leslie.


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