Just a quick note to point you in the direction of my new “eHome” page on my blog. It uses a CurrentCost meter to read electricity usage and temperature data from my home, via the superb Pachube service. As I gradually purchase new sensors, I’ll update the page to include data from those, too.
Happy to report that my second CurrentCost display has arrived, just a day after ordering it off eBay from CurrentCost themselves. A bargain at just £15 plus postage, it enables me to have this unit on our kitchen worktop, while the other is connected to my server ready to connect to the web service I am developing.
A quick update on that: having had so much fun so far creating an infrastructure capable of handling the current cost data, I have decided to extend it so that other users from around the world can publish and share their sensor data, not just from the current cost. I know, I know… there’s also the very good Pachube out there for those who are inclined to use it, but I figured what I’d like to do is offer something a bit more consumer friendly, with graphing and social features as well.
If anyone is interested in helping me test this out (or even in lending a hand with the design and build), do get in touch. More on the current project progress soon…
I heard about Logitech’s digital video security system today: WiLife. It’s a wireless, ‘professional quality’ digital home/small business security surveillance system. It is aimed for non-professionals (or non-geeks) and looks to be truly plug and play.
The examples that I’ve seen look to be reasonably high quality (if a little staged!), and the system itself looks very easy to install – just insert the cd, install the software, and locate and plug the wireless cameras into the mains electrical system. Bingo.Job done.
The system supports up to five cameras, I believe, and you can mix both indoor/outdoor cameras in any combination. Interested? If the price were to come down a bit, I think I would be. Right now, the “master kit” costs £211.91+VAT, and each indoor or outdoor camera costs £169.36+VAT (www.dabs4work.com).
Now all I gotta do is build something….
In Getting CurrentCost to talk to the web: planning, I provided an outline of some of my thoughts with regard to building an application and website/web services for connecting my CurrentCost to the web. I took another step in realising that goal today by taking out a hosting package.
It’s been over a week since I ordered my CurrentCost and it still hasn’t arrived yet; but I have already started building the serial library necessary to extract the XML packet from the unit on a regular basis.
For those of you who haven’t been following, I’m going to build a small Windows Service to read the data from the CurrentCost, and push it to my web service. From there, I’ll start with a simple web front end with some graphing capabilities as well as some data archive/retrieval stuff. And we’ll go from there…
I’m designing it with scalability in mind, from a multiple user/multiple device point of view, so if anyone’s interested in trying it out/helping me to develop it please get in touch.
Thanks… more to follow soon.