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    Research Activities underway at the McKechnie Family LIFE Home

    With the start of the spring 2021 academic semester, the McKechnie Family LIFE Home is now playing host to research and development activities for the first time!    Members of a robotics research team (pictured here) have been working with the LIFE Home's resident "cobot" named Stretch by Hello Robot.  The team aims to identify the capabilities and limitations of this cobot and is working on the development of new tools and end affectors to make Stretch as useful as possible.   More research activities are being planned as researchers begin to be awarded grants with The McKechnie Family LIFE Home as the intended research space.  



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    McKechnie Family LIFE Home Received Accessibility Evaluation

    The McKechnie Family LIFE Home team hosted staff members from the Disability Resources & Educational Services (DRES) last week on a tour to assess the facility for universal accessibility.  The DRES staff reviewed the entire space through their experienced lens of evaluation.  We discussed use cases to ensure that the McKechnie Family LIFE Home can accommodate visits and activities by a range of individuals.    Thank you to the DRES team staff members for helping us to make our facility better! 





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    McKechnie Family LIFE Home Team Presents to CABA

    Wendy Rogers, Harshal Mahajan, and Brian Pastor presented to the Continental Automated Buildings Association (CABA) Connected Homes Council regarding the recently completed research facility.  Members of this council represent leads of industry from across Canada and the United States and offered a unique insight into innovate uses for the space around smart technologies, internet of things (IoT) and climate control.     


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    McKechnie Family LIFE Home Kitchen Fully-Equipped

    The McKechnie Family LIFE Home now is home to a top-of-the-line suite of smart Samsung appliances that add to our home simulation space.  These appliances are all a part of the smart technology package that will allow for a greater understanding of topics related to the Internet of Things (IoT) and will provide a more well-rounded and functional home simulation space.  


  • 2020 in Review - McKechnie Family LIFE Home

    2020 was a year of tremendous growth for the McKechnie Family LIFE Home and included some exciting milestones for the research facility and the researchers who inhabit it.   The LIFE Home team took some time to reflect on our year and below are some highlights: 

    January 2020 - JohnCo Construction completes finishing touches on the LIFE Home 

    February 2020 - Director, Wendy Rogers, makes first media appearance promoting the McKechnie Family LIFE Home 

    May 2020 - LIFE Home team meets for the first time post-shelter-at-home order to continue planning, moving forward the progress to facility operational status.  

    June 2020 - Stocks Furniture delivers all furnishings for the McKechnie Family LIFE Home. 

    July 2020 - Camera and AV system installation begins!

    August 2020 - First Robot takes up residence in LIFE Home/LIFE Home hosts the inaugural class of the Master of Science in Health Technology

    October 2020 - LIFE Home smart appliances begin to be installed 

    December 2020 - Website officially Launches 


    As we move into 2021, we are so excited to continue this progress and begin to host our first research activities in this cutting-edge space.   Be sure to keep up with our blog to continue to follow our journey! 


  • LIFE Home Website Launches!

    After much work by the LIFE Home Team, the College of Applied Health Sciences Communications Department, and our web design partner Water High Creative, we're proud to introduce a new standalone page for the McKechnie Family LIFE Home.   On this new site, there is information about our team, information on the facility, and resources for use the LIFE Home.  

    Check it out for yourself here


  • Master of Science in Health Technology Students Work in LIFE Home

    The inaugural Master of Science in Health Technology class has been working on their course work and designing prototypes of health technologies using the McKechnie Family LIFE Home facilities.  These students have put the Health Technology Innovation lab to use working together to mock up prototypes of different health technologies that could innovate health management and care in the future.   The LIFE Home facilities have allowed these students to work on these projects in-person and collaboratively while maintaining the required safety protocols with thoughtful management of work areas and through the use of the university-wide COVID-19 testing requirements. 



  • Smart Home Technologies and Appliances - Making the McKechnie Family LIFE Home into the Home of the Future

    The McKechnie Family LIFE Home is a cutting-edge research facility, which in large part is due to the smart home technologies that have been selected to populate the spaces.  When approaching the smart home technologies to place in the different rooms, the team made an effort to not be brand/OS specific so that researchers can assess a variety of technologies and how they interact with one another to allow for more successful living.   Below is a list of the smart technologies that are currently in the home.  

    -Samsung - Family Hub 4-Door French Door Smart Refrigerator 

    -Samsung - Linear Wash 24" Top Control Built-In Smart Dishwasher

    -LG -  French InstaView Door-in-Door Smart Refrigerator with Ice Maker 

    -Amazon Smart Oven, a Certified for Humans device 

    -GE® Smart Countertop Microwave Oven with Scan-To-Cook Technology

    -Atomi Smart WiFi Coffee Maker Compatible with Alexa & Google Home, iOS and Android

    -Hamilton Beach Programmable Coffee Maker 


    Additionally, the team is in the process of selecting and purchasing digital home assistants, smart home sensors, and other smart home technologies that will round out the smart technology suite offered to researchers and research participants in the home.  

    "“LIFE home

  • McKechnie Family LIFE Home Partnership with Stocks Furniture

    The LIFE Home team, in partnership with Stocks Furniture, have outfitted the McKechnie Family LIFE Home with modern and functional furnishings.  In a recent visit (pictured here), the LIFE Home team met with Terry Martin from Stocks, who has been a key player in the planning, ordering, and delivery of our furniture, to address final touches to our furniture package.   This partnership has been tremendously beneficial, and we can’t think Terry enough!


  • Inaugural Master of Science in Health Technology Class Begins in McKechnie Family LIFE Home

    The newly-launched Master of Science in Health Technology program, a part of the Health Technology Education Program, held its inaugural event in the McKechnie Family LIFE Home on Friday, August 21st.  This event consisted of students and faculty, both in-person and virtual, launching the program and making introductions.   

    The Master of Science in Health Technology students will be completely in-person this semester thanks to appropriate social distancing and sanitation practices within the McKechnie Family LIFE Home.  It's incredibly thrilling to see the space beginning to be occupied and used to better the lives of the students in this program.  Onward and Upward from here!

    new classroom in LIFE Home building