Swarm intelligence is a type of crowd intelligence, like what is seen in ant or bee colonies, where each member of the colony tends to work independently at a particular task and then contributes their particular knowledge to the collective, and the group reacts as a whole.
For example, ants may have guards, health monitors, food gatherers, childcare monitors, etc. When any one group hits an alarm, (Food is low! The Queen is dying!) the entire hive reacts appropriately because they come “programmed” with the knowledge of what their next task should be.
In effect, this is where the Smart Home is going. With lights, sockets, hubs, speakers, security, curtains, appliances, etc, the Smart Home is becoming a swarm of input sensors where each sensor will be able to react based on input from all other sensors.
For example, in a Smart Home, if the sensors are activated, i.e. a window is broken or the inside temperature is not ideal, then the entire home will react appropriately. The alarm will go off and the security alerts will be sent, the heater may automatically go off to save energy, the lights may go on, and the home owner’s phone alarm alerts them to the situation. Each segment of the home will come preprogrammed with the knowledge of how it should react based on the particular information supplied by the hundreds of sensors around the home.