Friday, March 27, 2015

Internet of Things, sort of ...

I currently am a member of a nice maker space (IXR) in Wall Township, NJ (at InfoAge). And I've decided to add a few of my HA nodes to the network there. I have a spare weather station so rather than let it go to waste I'll set it up there. I'll then add one of my Chipkit MQTT nodes and finally I'll take a Raspberry Pi. I'll have to setup the Pi to use as much Cloud technology as possible. I'd love to figure out how to do NSF into the cloud for the Pi. I'll need to work on that. The MQTT node will be setup for simple commands, monitor attached sensors and control some very minor devices (LEDs, maybe a serial LCD). I'll also need to set it up to login to a cloud MQTT service. Control of the MQTT node will be done by my HA software in my home. So I'll have access to local and remote nodes. . I'm currently working on getting an MQTT service working with my home HA MQTT node.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

TCF Presentation and Misterhouse and MQTT

Well it had been a mad rush to prepare for my TCF presentation: DIY Home Automation (2015-03-21). I think it went well, I seemed to have selected the correct number of slides and covered the most interesting material. I had a large number of questions at the end and at least no one fell asleep. ;-) I didn't get a chance to bring any working HA. I accidentally sat on the Dollhouse (don't ask). This is actually quite hard to setup a portable demonstration. Maybe next year I'll have something. I've just finished my MQTT module for MH but didn't have enough time to test it or properly set it up on the Raspberry Pi or ODroid (both small ARM based computers). This would have been perfect to work with but with no testing the possibility of failure during a demonstration was quite high (110% ;-) ). I have some very nice examples of Perl, Python and Bash scripts for example some Node-Red flows, use of MQTT and finally the MQTT device driver for MH. Showing a working example of the complete system would have been very neat. Hands on is have been much interesting! Perhaps next year, if I start now I'll have a complete working system with many fancy examples. One gentleman asked if I knew how to pull data from the Weather Underground and I explained that I have a nice set of scripts to do just that. What I really need to do is put together a series of articles that explain how to get started. This almost sounds like another book. Well at least a series of articles.

On a finally note, now that I have the MH driver written I can also start spending some time on the Homeseer software (HS3) I have installed on my server (yes I have more than one HA suite on my server). I'll be writing an MQTT driver for HS3. I'm also running Node-Red and Mosquitto (a MQTT broker) with websocket support. With Node-Red I've been creating some interesting quickly written flows and have it sitting between various different information sources and HA suites. I've found it a nice addition to my collection. I'll be looking at rule engines and I may be able to turn Node-Red into its own HA suite.