All my life I have been building stuff with electronics and computers. My desk at home is full with wires, resistors, sensors etc. Always repairing devices and making things automated and energy efficient. After receiving new window blinds that can be controlled remotely, I started with home automation (Domotics) and IoT to control everything automatically.
IoT stands for “Internet of Things” you can say for example that all “things” can be connected to the internet. For example, your refrigerator.
IoT is not only for the big companies but can be used also for measuring temperature, humidity, light intensity and controlling your window blinds in your own home. In combination with domotics, you can make your home completely automated, with lights going on and off at prescheduled times, or with an app on your phone.
You may think, that sounds very expensive, but it isn’t! For around 15 euros you can measure all sorts of things with IoT devices connected to your home Wi-Fi, in combination with a program called Domoticz and a firmware called “EasyESP”.
So what is possible with Domoticz you may ask? I have already mentioned the first example, you can turn your lights on with a mobile phone, or when the sun goes down(Domoticz already has an internet time of when the sun goes down). You can also build your own light level sensor, which can measure when it is turning dark outside. You can also turn your lights on when you arrive home. This is possible because your mobile phone connects to your wifi, when you arrive home and Domoticz can detect that. The same goes for when you are leaving your house. When the phone disconnects, you can check with the right sensors if all your doors are locked and if not, you can receive a message on your phone.
And that is what is making your home smart is, when it can “talk” to you with messages
I made a script for my trash bin. On a set day of the week, I need to put the trash bin outside. On that set date, the Domoticz system sends me a message that I need to put the trash bin outside and which color so I don’ forget. This is possible with message system “Telegram” which has an API that can send messages to the Telegram mobile app.
But what if you want to receive a message when somebody is at the front door ringing your doorbell? Connect an IoT device to your doorbell and “Telegram” can send you a message. And if you have an IP camera, it can also send a photo of the person in front of your door with a push of a button.
For around €3,50 you can order an IoT device from China. This device has already got Wi-Fi built in! For a few euro’s extra, you can order all kinds of sensors that you can connect to your IoT device.Add a few wires and resistors and you are good to go!
To show you it is not only for the companies, I have made a “how to” so you can build your own IoT device, which you can connect to a few opensource domotics solutions.