The kitchen floors of the future are here. IBM has been granted a U.S. patent for a multi-touch smart floor that can detect home intruders or call “911? when you’ve fallen down.

The multi-touch floor will be all-knowing thanks to a database of objects and blanket of sensors. The sensors will track the number, weight, shape and location of objects in a room.

Simple addition and subtraction drives IBM’s new patented invention. It counts the number of objects in contact with the floor covering and compares it to numbers in its database. Residents will be able to turn their futuristic floors “on” or “off” to keep track of the number of people at home.

In the full patent report, IBM explains that the floor can be attached to various monitors and devices that record time and movement, among other things. The floor could detect a “person lying prone on the floor” or report a person suffering a heart attack.

In addition to responding to at-home medical emergencies, the floor can be used to secure private or commercial property by detecting unauthorized entries.

The electronic floor’s full potential of uses is still up in the air (or, in the case, down on the floor).

What floor technology would you encourage IBM researchers to incorporate?


Posted by Janine E. Mooney, Editor

April 11, 2012