MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Dec. 18, 2000 — Microsoft recently unveiled its vision of a connected living environment for the future; a place where technology, entertainment and imagination come together to make it easier for families and friends to stay in touch, keep organized and get things done. Through the Microsoft Home, an 8,000-square-foot loft in Manhattan's Tribeca neighborhood, the company introduced more than 25 examples of the latest software-based technologies and services that show how families can take advantage of technology to improve the efficiency of their homes and enrich their lives.
On Dec. 20, as part of the fourth installment of Microsoft's monthly Silicon Valley Speaker Series, Steven Guggenheimer, senior director of the Microsoft Personal Services and Devices Group, will present "Home for the Holidays," a discussion about the connected home and the technology that makes it possible.
Taking place at Microsoft's Silicon Valley Campus in Mountain View, Calif., the presentation will feature a virtual tour of the Microsoft Home and several live demonstrations, showcasing many of the Home's connected products and technologies.
"We are showing how technology products that are available today are being integrated into the living environment to improve and enhance the way we work and live at home," Guggenheimer said. "The Microsoft Home demonstrates how we can use technology today to communicate in new ways, experience exciting new options for entertainment and have more time to do all this by making home life more efficient for everybody."
Microsoft began sponsoring the Speaker Series in August as a way to bring together company executives and industry observers to address a variety of technologies, trends and topics relevant to the high-technology world. A Microsoft executive since 1993, Guggenheimer has most recently worked with the WebTV, MSN and Windows CE product teams. He has spent significant time supporting core standards areas for the Internet, digital television and home networking, and is now focusing his time on evangelizing the potential of these technologies to improve everyday life.
Guggenheimer's talk will center on many of the features that make up the Microsoft Home. These include an MSN Companion Internet terminal, connected or "smart" appliances and various networked and connected wireless devices that provide powerful communication tools to family members in any room in the house, as well as on the road.
The Microsoft Home also includes numerous home entertainment and gaming technologies, and software such as Microsoft Money 2001 and MSN eShop, which can be combined with the connected devices and appliances to simplify tasks like balancing the checkbook, ordering groceries or keeping track of appointments and dates. Interconnectivity throughout the home means that the security system, thermostat, lights, stereo and other home appliances can be controlled from almost anywhere using desktop computers, Pocket PCs or Web-enabled phones, Guggenheimer said.
"What we've tried to do is showcase the breadth of applications for technology around the home," Guggenheimer said. "Obviously, different technologies will resonate with different people. We want to give people the opportunity to see what's possible now, and to imagine what these technologies could evolve into in the future."
To register for the Speaker Series, please RSVP to Waggener Edstrom at (800) 275-0070 or firstname.lastname@example.org .