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Microsoft shows how the Internet of Things can actually be interesting

• http://www.theverge.com, By Jacob Kastrenakes

They're dry suggestions of how you might start up music, play with your refrigerator, or hook up some weather sensor — all key parts of the smart home, but not something you'd necessarily get excited about. But Microsoft is doing things differently. In a bright spot in the middle of Samsung's Internet of Things keynote this morning, Microsoft's Bryan Roper came out to demo how Windows is integrating with smart home platforms to present data about your home.

Roper's enthusiasm is a huge part of what makes the demo interesting, but it also stands out because we get to see more than just a basic integration of two devices. Roper uses Cortana to generate a chart comparing people in the house and how much they use different appliances; based on what it displays, he's then able to drill down for more information. By the end of it, he sounds legitimately excited to have used data to bust Billy's bad habits. This sort of integration isn't brand new to Windows — Insteon, for instance, already connects with Cortana — but it's worth checking out if you're interested in what you could do with a home full of connected devices.