A creative night light

Yesterday, we purchased a bird cage looking lantern named “GOTTGÖRA” for my daughter’s room as a nightlight.

Previously, I purchased a roll of led USB powered lights and my wife thought to stuff this LED roll of lights into the lantern and use it as a creative source of nightlight for our daughter.

The result was a beautiful nightlight, that we placed in the corner of her room.

I love the look of the light but it was rather inconvenient to go to the switch to turn it on and off, and moreover, for it to be effectively a nightlight, it should either be motion activated or better yet, SIRI activated so that she can command it to turn on or off as necessary!

This is a video of the light BEFORE being SIRI enabled.

So now it’s time to rummage the toolbox and hack together a Siri enabled USB controller.

Added OneSignal WebPush notifications

Now, on both Chrome and Safari browsers, WebPush is enabled on this site. Simply click on the red bell and choose “Subscribe” located bottom right side of WifiEnabler site and you will be notified and updated whenever there is new content on the site. Cool stuff!

Screenshot of WebPush on a mobile phone

*** Currently only compatible with Chrome/Safari on the desktop. Chrome on Android mobile is working as well.

Updating WifiEnabler.com with SSL

Secure Socket Layers (SSL) is an important security requirement for websites, ensuring that the data to and from the website and the browser is encrypted. This link ensures that the information remains private and secure while the user sends or receive data from the website. SSL secures millions of websites on the internet and is vital in keeping transactions and other vital information such as passwords safe.

I spent some time updating WifiEnabler site to a secure site. Below is the report from SSLLabs

If you notice, now the site URL bar shows a green “secure” label and a lock symbol.

What is SSL?

Siri voice control for home

Taking baby steps, I initially created a MQTT server to link up my home-brew Wi-Fi devices. To date, I have simple on-off switches, a bridge for 433Mhz devices and an interface to WiWo smart switches. My speakers and Spotify are connected as well. I subsequently built a home interface to control each controller via iOS and Android app.

However, I would love to have the devices controlled via Siri. In order for me to setup Siri voice control, I needed a more powerful raspberry pi, so I ordered a couple of RaspPi3 from element 14. Once the units arrive, I began building the interface for Siri.

Now that it’s done, my home automation project responds to commands like:

“turn on kitchen light”

“Turn on living room fan”

“Set study fan to medium”

“Turn off all devices” is useful when I need to head out of home in a jiffy.

I will try detail the entire build process when I find some time.

My home controller

I have several MQTT endpoints and a MQTT broker setup in my home and need a client to collate these controls. I will be using Ionic to build iOS and Android applications (upcoming project), in the meantime, this is how I control the devices around the house. Here’s a screenshot..

A WIFI to 433mhz bridge

I have 5 ceiling fans in my home and they are controlled by 433Mhz controllers. I love my fans, except that with this kind of tech, the controller is essentially “married” to the fan unit. You see, for 433mhz, each mode of operation (On/Off, Fan Speed etc) is hard coded to a particular “code” and that is why the controllers are NOT interchangeable.

433Mhz is relatively cheap and used in many applications like doorbells, electrical appliances etc, its key benefit is that it does not require line of sight to operate, as opposed to an infrared controller (TV remote).

An early prototype
Completed WIFI to 433Mhz Bridge

This inspired me to build a “universal remote” of sorts for 433Mhz devices (my daughter jokingly said that the fans would be cheating on their controllers lol). Not just that, but also bridging it up to WIFI and controlling it over MQTT. This way, my smartphone can be used as a universal controller to control all the fans. It will bring a new level of ease and convenience to using these devices.

Continue reading “A WIFI to 433mhz bridge”

Using LTA datamall to Display LIVE Traffic images

This is a work in progress of a Google Map Plugin that I’m developing.

It utilizes the JSON datasource supplied by LTA Datamall and plots the incoming data out on Google Map.

Thank you LTA, for making available such an awesome set of data!

Obviously, this plugin needs fine tuning, but its a start! Give it a spin, the images on the map show current traffic conditions on the various highways and roads in Singapore.