LED strips have become a popular option for decorating a room as they can be used to create a vastly different ambience with the press of a button. While strips are awesome, they aren't always the most practical thing as they can be difficult to mount in the right way for your application. To make things easier, some companies sell light panels which are easy to mount directly on the wall. They can change color and offer tons of effects to keep things interesting. The most common product in this space is perhaps the "Nanoleaf light panel" which does the job perfectly, albeit a bit expensively. To save some money and get additional personalization I built my own light panels in a project I call ColorWall.
Home Assistant is an amazing application that provides a way to connect all of your smart devices into a single controller regardless of what protocols they support. Many users encounter a problem after using it for a while because the automations you can create aren't always as powerful as they would like. There has always been the option to use Python by writing your own integration or script, but they are difficult to use just for an automation. Here we will be providing a beginner's introduction to Appdaemon by looking a few examples and explaining how they work. You'll be writing up awesome scripts in no time!
When we are building smart devices ourselves, either to reduce cost or to customize the installation, there are a lot of choices to be made in terms of which components should be used. The most important component to projects in the smart home industry is arguably the microcontroller, which is responsible for keeping everything moving along smoothly. Many will immediately think of board such as the Arduino, while others might be thinking of the ESP8266 or ESP32. Which board should you use to build your DIY project?
Smart homes will inevitably include some amount of DIY work here and there - especially as it is uneconomical to call a professional every time a small change needs to be made. One thing most smart home owners are not prepared for is the number of tools required to do a good job. There aren't too many, but trying to complete certain projects without them will be challenging to put it lightly. Here is a list of the most important tools when building a smart home!
Home security and alarm systems have been closely related since they were invented. In the context of a smart home, it would be nice to integrate the sensors and alarm state into a controller, such as HomeKit. Traditionally, the commercial alarm industry has been dominated by propriety systems that require monitoring to work. Luckily, more recently, companies have started building systems that integrate with other existing technology to create an integrated home.