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Forget the smart home, I like to keep my place stupid

In this Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017, file photo, an Amazon Echo Dot is displayed during a program announcing several new Amazon products by the company, in Seattle. A test by an AP reporter finds that the virtual assistant Alexa inside the Echo Dot is good at reordering stuff bought previously on Amazon. But asking it to order new items was trickier, and it's definitely not for browsing. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

The Consumer Electronics Show just launched in Las Vegas, and one of the main conversations will be around whether Goliath Amazon will win in the race to control the smart home.

It’s turning into quite the battle with Google and Apple to smarten up your abode. The aim to control everything in your house from the lights to the temperature by just speaking commands to their devices that are always eavesdropping — I mean listening for your commands.

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Can I ask a question? What’s so bad about living in an unintelligent house?

Just how much smarter does my home need to be? I already have a computer, a laptop, and an iPad. My fridge flashes a light at me when the water filter needs to be replaced. I can watch YouTube cat videos on my TV without getting up from the couch.

I actually don’t think it’s that big a deal to stand up and walk over to the thermostat to change the temperature. I can look out the window for an instant check on the weather.

What am I missing here?

I just bought a kitchen gadget called a sous vide. It’s a pretty simple idea. All it does is hold a tub of water at a specific temperature. That’s it. Set it for 140 degrees, and all it has to do is maintain 140 degrees.

I didn’t realize when I bought it, but the one I got is bluetooth enabled to sync with my smartphone. Wow, the internet of things! I downloaded the app so I could smart home it up. Here’s the thing though. I would be standing next to the machine starring at my phone in my hand trying to control the device that was right in front of me.

After doing this a few times, I realized it was a lot easier to just put the phone down, reach over and turn the dial and press a button. The dumb kitchen wins again.

I’m around technology all day long. It’s actually nice to not have Alexa with me in my bathroom.

Here’s an idea: if you want to play some music — play some music. If you need a reminder about your shopping list, write it on the back of an envelope.

Call me old fashioned, but I like my people smart and my houses stupid.

You can hear “What are we talking about here?” everyday at 4:45 p.m. on 97.3 FM.

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