The Connected Home

Source of boxed information: all Parks Associates except "Speed Demons," Yankee Group Oddly enough, when I was growing up two of my favorite cartoon shows held diametrically opposite views of technology in our lives. The Flintstones promoted the simple life. Yes, the families of Bedrock had washing machines, telephones, and cars, but the utilities were powered by wisecracking dinosaurs, and Fred used foot power to drive to work at the gravel pit. The Jetsons, on the other hand, glorified the space age. Their quarters in Skypad Apartments were filled with automatic labor-saving devices, George's car folded up into a briefcase, and Rosie the robot kept the place clean. Clearly, the Flintstones were a prehistoric (or at least 20th-century) clan, while the Jetsons were a thoroughly modern 21st-century family.

Today, while most municipalities frown on brontosaurus barbecues (air-pollution concerns), few family dogs are nuclear powered and named Lectronimo. Nevertheless, we have an increasingly clear choice between a status quo house and one that's excitingly futuristic. The technology driving this new world is called home connectivity.