Father’s Day is a pretty big deal for our customers and families everywhere. My own father died in winter of 2015 of prostate cancer and there isn’t a day when I don’t think about him. A few days before he died, we had a pep talk. He told me I really had to focus on smart homes because he was starting to read about it a lot in the news and ‘my little houses’. I wasn’t able to give him a Good Night Lamp at the time (Canada’s mobile networks are ridiculous) but as we start testing in the US for our summer delivery of lamps I’m reminded of his strength through illness and adversity. It gives me strength working through the coming months of challenges.
I’m in the US this week, speaking about my upcoming book on smart homes at a Carnegie Mellon University event in Pittsburgh. I’m also carrying a little box of electronics including the platform we’re hoping to use, the brand new Arduino MKR NB 1500. We’re hoping we can use it on the brand spanking new mobile networks that have been rolled out in the past months (it’s called LTE CAT-M1).
I’ll be testing in Pittsburgh and then sending this on to Daniel Soltis who used to work with me when I ran Tinker London, the first distributor of the Arduino (and is my technical editor on the book!). Adrien McEwen, himself the co-author of Designing the Internet of Things is acting as our CTO again and Lawrence Archard is helping build a whole new LED panel so we can get a better colour matching and we’re even building in a little status light to help our customers understand when there’s a network issue.
We’re delivering to a handful of customers in the US in the next couple of months and I’m extremely excited to see how they get on with them. It’s all so new, new mobile networks, new hardware, there’s a lot to risk here, but we learnt a lot from our previous iteration so I’m really confident it’ll go well. And I get that strength and determination from my dad naturally.
I wish our customers who are fathers and their fathers a great day making memories for years to come.