Smart Home Automation & Monitoring

Building the intelligent home

Home Control, my home automation interface
Home Control, my home automation interface

I first started on the home automation journey in 2002 with an X10 CM12U computer interface and a couple of light and appliance modules and it has grown since then.

I’ve since ditched X10 in favour of other technologies and today I now have control of all the lights around the house, a number of appliances, AV equipment, heating, fans etc. plus a lot of sensors monitoring gas and electricity usage, temperature, humidity, rain fall, air pressure etc. Notification for everything from the doorbell being pressed, letterbox being opened, fridge door left open to warnings of unusual power usage levels, rain due and flood alerts.

Block Diagram
Block Diagram

My philosophy behind the system is to allow multiple technologies to intermingle so that cutting edge devices and cost effective commodity technology can be used along with DIY designs so that they are all integrated into the one system so as to be transparent to the user. The back end control system and user interface should be completely under my control as far as possible so that I am not constrained by others design decisions. These days the backbone of the system is MQTT with Node-RED at the core and my own web interface on top, everything is controlled from a central Debian Linux server with several satellite nodes, the web interface, wall mounted and handheld RF controllers, voice control or my Pebble smartwatch.

More information about the system

A day in a smart home

Smart home control

Appliance and lighting control

The human interface

Speech notifications

Voice control

Pebble smartwatch notifications and control

Smart objects and notifications

Environmental sensors

Energy monitoring

Presence detection


Information/status displays

Phone system

CCTV cameras

Audio and video

iRobot Roomba

System Block Diagram


Last modified: 21 October 2016