If you are technologically minded, you probably like things automated. Take housecleaning for example. You probably have a central vac system or a small compact bot for dusting up. Why do it yourself when a nonhuman can do it. Then you don’t get accused of exploitation! You don’t have to pay under the table and you don’t have to file IRS taxes. All you do is fill out a warranty form and turn the device on.
Computers aren’t really used much for cleaning tasks as much as they are for refrigerators and stoves, dishwashers, and laundry units. There is no electric broom or dust pan. We have come a long way with other appliances. Washers and dryers, among other machines, have digital displays and operate almost flawlessly with their upgraded controls. They are better than ever before and technology is here to stay.
Vacuum cleaners have some technology involved at this stage of the game, but the basic operation is much the same as before: suction and friction do the job. It is about rotating brushes and fans. It is more about how to make a vacuum better without having to make it bigger. Devices are now getting more sensors, to be sure, just like the little robot versions, and we should expect to see some exciting developments in the household cleaning sphere in years to come. No more bumping into table and chair legs or crashing into the chest of drawers. But a lot more is in store for the average vacuum user.
What else can technology offer the weary housewife or house husband? Your trusty vacuum could let you know when the bag or trash unit inside is full. It could prevent overheating when the fan goes on the fritz by cooling it off. It could change from low to high suction pressure at the flip of a switch or button and change hose attachments automatically so you don’t have to use cumbersome accessories. They would just pop out of the standing machine! It could raise and lower the height of the vacuum to suit the user, and it could suck water from a spill in any particular mode.
Vacuums already can run on batteries and can be recharged with ease, alleviating the stress from worrying about tripping over cords. They already are lighter in weight and simpler to operate. They can attack dust and dirt on carpets, floors, concrete, stairs, or even outside on the patio. They are bag-free, more sanitary, and more streamlined than ever before. The industry knows about upgrades and what pleases consumers. Having said that, a lot of the best robot vacuum cleaners that are on the market today are still fairly primitive in their designs – they move around the room, until they bump into something and then change direction – there’s no way to upload a map of the room to the device and make sure that it covers every spot. They have created a product that has universal appeal and widespread use. They are forever at the design table making changes to make household life easier.
Programmable vacuums are not millennia away. They are in process, and the rush will soon be on. It has happened with other appliances, and it will happen here. It is exciting to imagine the prospects of automation and technological advancement. The best is yet to come.