Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Hardware is the new software, thanks to 3-D printing, the makers' community, and even an incipient open source hardware movement. This bodes well for better, more elegant, hardware design. Close on the heels of reinventing the thermostat, Nest, one of Silicon Valley's most innovative hardware companies, has released a reimagined smoke and carbon monoxide alarm, named "Protect." As the company explains, "We take the unloved products in your home and make simple, beautiful, thoughtful things." It's no coincidence that both of Nest's products evoke iPod, iPhones, and iPads in their simply-elegant designs, because several Nest founders are Apple alumni. With its new Protect, Nest must be hoping that where there's smoke, there's profit.