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Hotel Room of the Future

Techstination feature for Wednesday, May 5, 1999

What are you looking for when you check into a hotel room? Watch your thoughts, there are children listening. There are high tech plans for the future. I'm Fred Fishkin with Bootcamp, a report on computers and technology. Imagine this scenario. You check into your room..and pull back the curtains to see a beautiful view of the ocean. Palm trees swaying. Waves crashing. Don't like it? Push a button to change it. What's going on here?

"Instead of having windows in the guest rooms, you would have video walls and the individual would be able to program in the scene that they feel would be most interesting to them. It might be, the scene might be a forest or it might be a seashore."

Alan Stutts is the dean of the Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management at the University of Houston where they are working on the hotel rooms of the future. A video wall instead of a window?

"From an energy standpoint it's more efficient not to have windows in a room."

What about all of those outside big city rooms especially? Stutts says they are working on adding white noise....

"It's a noise that's designed to mask out other sounds."

And instead of a key or one of those paper or plastic cards to get in your room, you may only need to touch the door knob. Your fingerprint would be your key. Expensive to add...

"But I believe in the relatively near future that that technology will become much more cost effective."

You'll be able to check out the changes when you check in five or ten years.