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Old 30th November 2011, 18:47   #1
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Red face Home automation Thread

Recently I had visited a premium villa in bangalore and found the home automation for home lighting (mood lighting),security and piped music as well the centralised video streaming, remote garage opening/monitoring over Iphone etc.
Found many products based on Insteon/X10 protocols for USA (110V), could not locate many companies except eLoka from bangalore, dealing with this attractive idea.
With so many gadget admirers/software professionals, I request people to share their ideas.
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Old 1st December 2011, 15:11   #2
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Personally, i'm waiting for "Android at home".

That way its easy to control everything from your phone or tablet itself, without the need for some bulky and expensive 'controller'.

If you like DIY and playing with Arduino, here's an option : http://www.domotichome.net/


cya
R
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Old 2nd December 2011, 14:24   #3
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Hi Rehaan,
THe google at home seems far away and the existing home controller setups are very expensive, what will be the basic wiring to be done for future home automation?.
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Old 2nd December 2011, 14:32   #4
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Did you look at Honeywell solutions? - Total Connect from Honeywell
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Old 2nd December 2011, 15:22   #5
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by bullock-Car View Post
...what will be the basic wiring to be done for future home automation?.
I'd just run CAT5 / ethernet cables all over the place. To every point you need a camera, switchboard, or any other control. This will do the trick for DIY stuff, but i don't know how well it will integrate with other solutions.

Also, leave a lot of room around the switchboxes for controllers, but once again i'm just talking about what i wish i had done in my room so i could get on with my DIY project

cya
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Old 3rd December 2011, 00:13   #6
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by bullock-Car View Post
Found many products based on Insteon/X10 protocols for USA (110V),
I have used X10 automation setup in my work and it is very simple and efficient way of powering on/off your devices. The main hassle was with the voltage. So we had to use transformers to get the setup working.
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Old 11th December 2011, 10:08   #7
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
Personally, i'm waiting for "Android at home".

That way its easy to control everything from your phone or tablet itself, without the need for some bulky and expensive 'controller'.

If you like DIY and playing with Arduino, here's an option : Home automation with Arduino and Android | DomoticHome


cya
R
hi Rehann
Kindly look at this proposition, which has potential for home automation as well;
Step aside Arduino, TinkerForge is the new sheriff in mod-town (video) -- Engadget
The modular system is designed for even novice users to whip up fully functioning robots in a matter of minutes hours. You start with a 4 x 4cm Brick, which you program over USB, but it won't do anything until you add accessories in the form of Bricklets: switches, joysticks, motors, accelerometers and LCDs. You can stack up to eight Bricks to expand the potential of your projects, including a step-down transformer and a (forthcoming) WiFi unit. If the rules-based programming software is too easy for you, the hardcore can bust out their mad C, C++, C#, Java and Python skills. The first models are available today, Bricks cost between 30 ($40) - 50 ($70) and Bricklets cost 3 ($4) - 20 ($25). Head on past the break to catch the press release and a video of some of the brilliant ways you can use this technology, including an infra-red theremin, self-positioning telescope and robots -- so many robots.
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Old 2nd February 2013, 08:38   #8
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
I'd just run CAT5 / ethernet cables all over the place. To every point you need a camera, switchboard, or any other control. This will do the trick for DIY stuff, but i don't know how well it will integrate with other solutions.

Also, leave a lot of room around the switchboxes for controllers, but once again i'm just talking about what i wish i had done in my room so i could get on with my DIY project

cya
R
Have things changed for the better, Rehan? Are there are any "idiot" proof solutions available without having to rely on heavy technical knowledge or DIY?
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Old 2nd February 2013, 11:06   #9
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
... waiting for "Android at home". ...
That would be a very costly solution, comparatively. Currently the automation elements are bare-bones silicon implementation with no overheads. Even the networking elements (X10 etc.) are piggy-backing over the existing power wiring itself.

Taking an Arduino board and implementing the automation scheme on it will either require unnecessary overheads for wiring the control elements to it (switches, thermostats, regulators, etc.) like I/O in conventional industrial controls, or you will land up interfacing to, for example, the X10 capable elements themselves using a bridge.

The bridge to the automation elements is provided by a wifi bridge that sits on X10 on one hand, and provides conventional wifi-based interaction on the other. One only needs a UI for changing the settings of the automation elements, and for manually controlling them. UI software implementations are already available for Android and iOS.

So why go the Arduino board way? What seems a rather cheap solution, actually needs twice it's cost just for interfacing.

Edit: BTW, there are X10 based automation elements available from other countries like Germany and Singapore.

Last edited by DerAlte : 2nd February 2013 at 11:11.
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Old 4th February 2013, 20:06   #10
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Interesting that this thread just got bumped up... I just began my home automation project last week.


Quote:
Originally Posted by areddy View Post
Have things changed for the better, Rehan? Are there are any "idiot" proof solutions available without having to rely on heavy technical knowledge or DIY?

As far as Android at home goes, nothing has been announced as yet.

When it comes to other solutions - there must be many, but to be honest i haven't considered them as i have specific needs, and want to do a DIY. So you'll have to do your own research on this one!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
That would be a very costly solution, comparatively. Currently the automation elements are bare-bones silicon implementation with no overheads. Even the networking elements (X10 etc.) are piggy-backing over the existing power wiring itself.
Not really costly at all. Probably cheaper than an X10 solution?

The issue i have with an X10 type thing is that; if i'm not mistaken; they require your lamp plug to be plugged into them. Most non-american houses have light wired in to the ceiling etc, and aren't plugged in anywhere. This is a big limitation.

----

Regarding my personal project, this is what i've got done:
  • Arduino Uno
  • Ethernet shield (more reliable than wifi i'd hope!)
  • Arduino Controller App for Android
  • A bunch of relays
  • A servo (for controlling my dimmer)
  • IR receiver (so i can also use a remote to control the lights instead of my phone)

How far i've got:
  • I can use sucessfully the phone to turn on / off relays (lights)
  • I can use the phone to turn the servo (dim or brighten dimmer)
  • I get a readout on my phone whether a light is on or off, as well as dimmer position
  • I still need to add the infrared control and write the code for it
  • I still need to integrate it with my existing switchboard!


Cheers,
R
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Old 4th February 2013, 20:52   #11
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

I have this thread opened and at the same time run into this from AT&T. Not sure if components they use are off the shelf
http://www.mnn.com/family/protection...arkets-in-2013
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Old 4th February 2013, 20:52   #12
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
... Not really costly at all. Probably cheaper than an X10 solution? ...
At imported (to India) prices, probably X10 is not cheaper. In USD X10 is cheaper. Also, no 'geek' background needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
... The issue i have with an X10 type thing is that; if i'm not mistaken; they require your lamp plug to be plugged into them. ...
There are many protocols - X10, INSTEON, UPB (Universal Powerline Bus), Z-Wave, Zigbee etc. - catering to this market, with quite a large array of devices to choose from. Lamps are usually connected to dimmers (you won't find tubelights in US homes) or a relay element. This need not be near the lamp - fine to interpose it in the wiring somewhere convenient. The wall boxes are different, so it makes more sense in new homes, not existing ones.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
... write the code for it ...
Non-trivial activity for commoners like me! For hobby, it is fine - not if one wants a 'fit and forget' solution, baba.
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Old 4th February 2013, 21:13   #13
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
Interesting that this thread just got bumped up... I just began my home automation project last week.
Very cool project Rehaan! Came across this yesterday on Kickstarter - I think you'll find it very interesting: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...ented?ref=card

Last edited by anekho : 4th February 2013 at 21:14.
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Old 5th February 2013, 22:42   #14
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
Interesting that this thread just got bumped up... I just began my home automation project last week.
Cheers,
R
Great rehann, Last many months I visited zigbee,zwave based lighting control.and conventional home automation demos.
Among the conventional system, typically require all wires to centralised distribution wires or in HAI systems from switchbox a cat 5 cable to controller.

One of the best controller is HAI Omni LTe board which is a security sytesm with 64 lighting control.
But still the automation quotes are only for those with lot of money to spare. Though I consider this year will be an watershed with ZIgbee and zwave devices and low cost controllers making headlines
i.e http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...art-home/posts

I think the zigbee relays are small which fit in the switch box i.e.
https://docs.google.com/viewer?url=h...uick-Start.pdf

Finally I am thinking i will go for conventional electrical wiring and provide for some extra space for these modules,may be after 1 year, to integrate lighting with Control from phone.
But the internet of things is the next big things with zigbee and zwave, it is going to be exciting.
Happy to see this thread becoming active again.

Last edited by Rehaan : 6th February 2013 at 13:06. Reason: Formatting
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Old 6th February 2013, 11:07   #15
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Default Re: Home automation Thread

I don't know if you guys have read about this but Android has finally entered consumer electronics. It's latest entry is in a Fridge that can track ingredients and order groceries for you!

More details here:

http://www.dnaindia.com/scitech/repo...ceries_1796822
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