Do you read the comics? Julie and her son are particular fans of “Brewster Rockit: Space Guy!” by Tim Rickard. It’s about the crew of the space station R.U. Sirius. A recent series featured engineer Cliff Clewless cheating on his digital assistants, each of which thought they were his only one. Read it here.

They are a vengeful bunch, aren’t they? Luckily, Alexa, Cortana, Google and Siri can’t really hurt us.

In this residential issue of Electrical Contractor, we acquaint you with the newsmaking and lesser-known home automation products and explain how electrical contractors can stay relevant in what seems to be a DIY era.

Chuck Ross writes about the latter in “The Next Generation.” He explains that the proliferation of the Internet of Things offers both challenges and opportunities for ECs. Susan Bloom covers the former in “Control Your Destiny.” You can find even more home automation products in our featured products section.

In “A Big Idea,” Jeff Gavin takes us inside tiny houses. (I don’t know how we’re all going to fit, though.) Tiny houses are catching the attention of insurance companies, manufacturers and builders. Growing acceptance in terms of zoning and code may lead to an enormous tiny house market.

Claire Swedberg writes about residential solar installations in “House of the Rising Sun.”

Connecting Electrical Contractor to our Integrated Systems Contractor supplement, Jim Hayes introduces us to fiber-to-the-home network pioneers who were inspired by Google Fiber. Read “Taking the Fiber Wheel.”

In Integrated Systems Contractor, Deborah L. O’Mara writes about getting more from access control in “Changing Expectations.” In “Notification Know-How,” Wayne D. Moore explains performance requirements for fire alarm notification systems.

We hope this magazine helps you with your business and that you also can apply it to your own homes, whether they are tiny or normal size.

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