Great Smart Home Blogs
Thermostats aren't the only smart home devices, there are clever people everywhere these days who are coming up with interesting and creative ways of making their homes more intelligent.
Some of the things I've seen people writing about on their blogs include:
- Curtains that open and close automatically to moderate the temperature.
- Fridges which can send you a text message when you're running low on milk.
- Automatic lights that turn off when no one is in the room.
- Door locks that allow you to send temporary entry codes to friends to let them in when you're not even there.
- Batteries with WiFi remote control - turn off the toys when it's time for your children to stop playing with them.
- WiFi connected mirrors with built-in computer displays.
- Smoke alarms with voice activated control which can tell the difference between a real fire and a burnt dinner.
- Intelligent glass that changes from clear to opaque on command.
Smart Home Blog Roundup
Here are some of the blogs where I learn about all these things and more...
Jon Scott is not only clever, he's very technically capable and he comes up with a range of brilliant home automation ideas which he creates, builds, and installs in his four bedroom, four bathroom home with a 3 car garage.
Jon is a genuine DIY guy - he's not just blogging about the latest gadgets available off the shelf, he's busy installing his own creations designed by him to specifically meet his own needs.
One of the things I really like about Jon's work is that he blogs in detail about each project, and even makes videos of some of his creations at work - like these plantation shutters which he has automated:
By "Official" they mean this is the official blog of California headquartered retailer Smarthome who sell just about every type of home automation product you can think of.
But it's not their online store I frequent, but rather their blog which is updated most days with information on the latest smart gadgets you can get. This one is taylored for the general public rather than complete geeks, so it can be much easier to follow than some of the more technically focused blogs. The fact that they've been in business for 20 years shows in their knowledge of the area, and I've discovered many interesting products and ideas from them.
They refer to themselves as an eMagazine for the Audio Visual and Home Automation Industry, but I find they're a great resource for DIYers as well because they have all the latest product announcements from large and small companies who supply the gadgets and equipment used in smart homes.
They've been online since 1996, and while the design of their website is a little dated, the articles in their eMagazine section have a lot of interesting information for the more technically minded home automaters among us.
Although Adam's projects are primarily designed for implementation in the UK, there are a lot of good projects to really sink your teeth into and ideas which will work anywhere. He is also quite generous in that all the hardware and software provided on his blog is made freely available to use under a Creative Commons license.
In his own words, "HA (Home Automation) for me is a method by which I can improve my life, save money and more importantly reduce my CO2 foot print on the world."
Don't let the name fool you, it's not just about solar energy, it's jam packed with renewable energy projects with detailed plans you can implement yourself. They also have a ton of information on energy efficient equipment and appliances, as well as government sponsored rebate programs (in the USA) for solar energy projects.
One of my favorite parts of the blog is the Experimental section which provides information on backyard inventions, inventor resources, and interesting projects which have been deployed in the real world.
This is a corporate blog by the Software Innovations division of Bosch - but don't let that put you off. What I like about this one is that it gives you some insight into how corporate giants approach the whole area of smart home technology.
This isn't so much a blog about gadgets, but rather analysis of the whole IoT, automation, and smart home world from the point of view of the people who research, invent and market the underlying technologies that make smart homes possible, and also the social impacts, or lack thereof, of these technologies.
More Blogs to Come...
This isn't an exhaustive list of the blogs I like, so I'll be adding to this collection as I have the time to write them up for you. I also maintain another list you might be interested in: 101 of the Best Home Improvement Blogs.
Featured image courtesy of Mark Moz