Building an Alexa-Powered Electric Blanket

by @edent | # # # # | 5 comments | Read ~3,676 times.

One evening, my wife turned to me in bed and said, "Winter is coming..." Well, what she actually said was "Get your frozen feet away from me, you cold-blooded monster!" The only way to save our marriage? HOOK OUR BED UP TO THE INTERNET! I couldn't find an electric blanket with IoT connectivity - so… Continue reading →

People who live in smart-houses, shouldn't throw parties

by @edent | # # # | 7 comments | Read ~449 times.

I have friends. More than one! I also have a home full of smart-gadgets which are controlled by apps. The two don't mix. This is yet another complaint about solipsistic app design. Let's take my Lifx bulbs. I have a friend staying for a few days, and he needs to be able to turn lights… Continue reading →

Review: Meross Smart Lightbulb - MSL120

by @edent | # # # # | Read ~250 times.
Product shot of the lightbulb.

I've previously reviewed other Meross smart home devices, so now on to their MSL120 - an E27 screw cap bulb. The bulb has dimming and colour changing functions. Let's crack on with a video! The app The Android app looks good - although a little rough around the edges, but it's easy to set up… Continue reading →

Review: Meross smart plugs and surge protector

by @edent | # # # # | Read ~1,343 times.
A power strip.

The good folk at Meross have sent me some of their smart-home gadgets to review. Let's dive in! Unboxing Products Smart Plug Socket And the Smart Power Strip. The single plug socket is good for 10 amps. It is smaller than the Wemo and Sonoff plugs I've reviewed. It has built in power monitoring -… Continue reading →

Review: Sonoff 433 RF WiFi bridge

by @edent | # # # # # # # | 23 comments | Read ~6,815 times.

The good folk at Sonoff have sent me yet another gadget to review. This is a slightly curious device - an IP to 433MHz remote. This allows a smartphone to control smarthome gadgets which usually require an RF remote control. It costs £8 plus postage direct from Itead. This is similar to an Infrared device… Continue reading →

Talking SmartHome tech on Radio 2

by @edent | # # # # # # # | Read ~111 times.

After hearing my interview on Radio 4, the Jeremy Vine show asked me to talk about my smart home tech for Radio 2. We discuss controlling all the devices in your home with your mobile phone. #r2vine pic.twitter.com/O9hx7aTFpp — BBC Radio 2 (@BBCRadio2) November 17, 2016 But! There was a twist. Could I demo some… Continue reading →

Singing to my light bulbs

by @edent | # # # # # | 3 comments | Read ~1,100 times.

Because I'm an idiot, I've decided that what my life needs is voice activated lightbulbs. But voice control is so 2015. Let's make these bulbs react to SINGING! Here's a demo - fair warning, my vocal prowess is "limited". OK, here's how to do this. I recently got a bunch of Lfix bulbs as part… Continue reading →

The absolute horror of WiFi light switches

by @edent | # # # # # # | 65 comments | Read ~159,041 times.

I've just got a WiFi light switch. As I've explained previously, swapping out all my existing light bulbs with Smart Bulbs would be hugely expensive and has the disadvantage of not working when the switches are off at the wall. A WiFi light switch (theoretically) allows me to control the lights from my phone -… Continue reading →

Smart Lights - Dumb Decisions

by @edent | # # # # # | 18 comments | Read ~7,723 times.

(A somewhat rambling post about a very inconsequential problem.) I'm slowly building a Smart Home. I've security cameras emailing me when a cat has the temerity to walk past a window, a Roomba which tweets me, a thermostat which knows if I'm working from home, and a car which knows when to charge from my… Continue reading →