About

I created this site so I could share some of the various technology projects I have done in my spare time. The primary focus is around Home Automation but really it’s about anything to do with technology and new stuff that interests me. While I work with Technology for a day job, this is just my hobby.

Mike
 

FAQs

What equipment/controller do you run?
Homeseer 3 on custom built PC
Aeon Labs Zwave USB Stick
RFXComm for 433mhz devices

Do you notice any power savings?
No, but that was never my goal. Overhead comes from running PC 24/7 for the controller + fat built into event logic so that lights don’t turn off too soon due to lack of movement. My household was particularly bad at leaving lights on and leaving the room, we have probably now broken even through automation (if you don’t include the costs of all the equipment involved)

How much did it all cost?
It’s slightly more expensive in this part of the world as we use different frequency for Z-wave than US and Europe so there is less range and the items that do come in our frequency are more expensive. A typical in wall or plugin switch is aprox $50USD

Isn’t it easier to press a light switch?
Depends on whether you find setting it up a chore or something fun. Once you have it setup and well tuned you take the whole system for granted. It should just work.

Do you do this for a living?
No.

Can you help me with my setup?
Sure ask away. I’m always happy to help others. Predominantly I help people with Homeseer especially around HSTouch and scripting but open to help on whatever.

Can I pay you to help?
I’m always happy to help as O do this stuff for fun. If something I’ve done has really helped you out then if you want you can donate via paypal to my beer and gadgets fund.

When do you run the Xmas show?
1st of Dec thru Xmas Eve.

How many lights?
Lost count. There are over 3k RGB pixel lights and probably 2k more dumb lights.

What software do you use for the Xmas Lights?
I originally started on Vixen 3, but half way through the year transitioned to Xlights as it was just that much more customizable and allowed a greater range of whole house effects. The show itself is run via 4 Raspberry Pi’s connected to their own Wifi Network running FPP software

How do you have a TV in your Window in the light show?
It’s a projector shining onto a white shower curtain I stabled to a wooden frame insert that goes in the window. The projector is set in rear projection mode so it shows correctly from the front.