Consumers are beginning to regard their vacuum cleaner as an important tool in their healthcare arsenal.
It is probably safe to say that vacuuming does not rank terribly high on consumers’ lists of favorite things to do.
Yet, short of inventing a robotic vacuum that, at the flick of a switch, cleans without the need for human guidance, manufacturers are employing a variety of technological advances to create new vacuum cleaner products that make the job as efficient and effortless as possible.
In many cases, those new technologies are being applied to products toward the upper end of the price scale, which is contributing heavily to the increased sales activity the industry is enjoying in higher-priced vacuum models.
And while each manufacturer is putting its own spin on what features are deemed most important, there are a number of key directions the industry as a whole is pursuing.
The NLX220 smart analog controller of San Jose, CA-based Adaptive Logic provides a simple and cost-effective solution for integrating adaptive logic functions into home appliances.
The chip, which can enable an appliance to operate in an auto or manual mode, consists of a fuzzifier, a defuzzifier and a controller.
When embedded into a vacuum cleaner, the chip’s fuzzy logic system adjusts itself according to environmental conditions.
Fuzzy logic system allows vacuum to adapt to changing conditions.
Complex digital microcontrollers aren’t the only, or even best, way to control many appliances. Instead, “smart” analog adaptive controllers using fuzzy logic methodology can provide a simpler, cheaper and better solution
OLD HABITS DIE hard. Gerry Harvey has risen through the ranks into Australia’s richest – estimated wealth of some $900 million – but he still hunts up a good price before he’ll fill the petrol tank, for example, and he’s always bargain hunting.
“I like doing that sort of thing so if that’s part of your nature then you try to buy cheap and you try to sell for more than you paid for it. In business that’s what you do all day.”
Maybe it’s not that simple anymore. The former vacuum cleaner salesman – who started door-knocking at 19 and began his first business at just 22 – is now responsible for a vast, publicly listed retail network of 195 homewares, electrical and computer stores with a turnover approaching $6 billion.
Harvey may be no economist, but he watches and analyses all the signs, including what he hears at his own checkouts.
Does your dog Scruffy stare longingly at your half-eaten strawberry ice cream cone as you lick it? Does he scarf up cookie crumbs better than any vacuum cleaner? If so, your pet is one of many animals that like sweet things.
Some animals would even love a sip of your aspartame-sweetened diet soda, while others couldn’t even taste the sweetness in the frosting on a slice of birthday cake.
Recently, scientists at Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia discovered an animal that likes almost all the same kinds of sweets that humans do. And you might be surprised to find out who our sweet twin is.
Cat vs. Dog
If you don’t feel like sharing your dessert, try spending time with a cat. Hannah Melio, 10, would love to share cookies with her cat Mimi, but when she breaks off a piece, Mimi “won’t even look at it.” Many pet owners have noticed that their cats don’t have much of a sweet tooth, and now scientists understand why.
Pro/ENGINEER Used To Design Successful Vacuum Cleaner Product Line
The Royal Appliance Mfg. Co. is one of the oldest vacuum cleaner manufacturers in the U.S. The company designs, assembles, and markets a comprehensive line of vacuum cleaners under the Royal and Dirt Devil brand names.
The increasing consumer demand for these products, and the need to decrease the product design cycle, resulted in a decision by the company to acquire the latest technology for product engineering.
Up to this time, product designs were hand drawn at drafting tables. The decision was made to automate this process.
Going from 2D drafting tables to advanced 3D solid modeling techniques on powerful Sun workstations was a major jump but John Sovis, engineering director, felt it was imperative for Royal to make a commitment to next-generation technology.