Last night, I attended a TechEd bloggers party, held in a pretty nice suite on the 40th floor of the Hyatt. (Not the 4th floor, as many of us had assumed. I realized later that this is because I'm used to the Microsoft buildings that I work in, where the first digit is the floor number. It didn't help that the party was in the Elizabeth Suite, and there's an Elizabeth ballroom on the 4th floor).

So, there we were, a bunch of bloggers, talking the sublime expressiveness of Cezanne's painting of Mont Sainte-Victoire.

and then somehow we got onto the topic of technology.

There were - as there always are in such a gathering - a few TiVo fans, and we got into discusing the "wired house", and the utility of the internet refrigerator:

The problem with the internet refrigerator is that it doesn't go far enough. The first obvious thing to add is a way to keep track of the inventory. That can be easily added though a bar code scanner and a few weight sensors, and then your fridge can make sure that you're alway stocked with a healthy supply of pickle slices, Miller Lite, and non-dairy whipped topping.

Do a little more, and you can have a fridge that won't let you eat that last slice of pizza, but will let you make yourself a nice healthy salad (sans dressing, of course).

All those are great features, of course, but the real benefit comes from solving the “what's for dinner?” problem. By tying in TiVo's “suggestion” feature, your fridge can notice that since you bought a frozen pizza, you might also like other tomato-sauce-based products, and presto, when you come home, you not only can have the pizza, but you can also have a serving of lasagna, or a nice tomato soup.

But it gets better. Just picture this...

You're at home on a Friday night with a date, cudling on the couch and watching the latest episode on Emeril on the Food Network. Just as Emeril finishes off making Emeril's Taco Salad with a Roasted Poblano Buttermilk Dressing and your date leans closer, your hear your fridge say, “You could make that right now!“.

Women dig talking appliances.