ESP8266 Relay Modules from Itead and Electrodragon

Here are two similar but also rather different WiFi controlled mains switching relay modules that both use the ESP8266 WiFi SoC. Both come with a nice case, can be reprogrammed with your own firmware and are exceedingly cheap for what you get. I’m using these with MQTT and Node-RED so that they seamlessly integrate with the […]

Orvibo S20 WiFi Mains Socket with Node-RED

For years I used X10 for all my remote controlled sockets but the unreliability eventually drove me to RF based sockets, the Home Easy ones in particular as you can’t beat the price, often available for circa £20 for a pack of 3 with a remote control and easily integrated into Node-RED and the likes with […]

Background Radiation Monitoring

A little Saturday afternoon project last weekend was putting together this geiger counter kit from RH Electronics in Israel, paired with a soviet SBM-20 Geiger-Müller tube sourced from an eBay seller in the Ukraine. Total cost was £32 which seems very reasonable to me. The RH Electronics kit comes with all the components apart from the […]

3D Printed Cases For TinyTX and Tiny328

Another post I’ve been meaning to write for a long time. I finally got my Rigidbot 3D printer in August 2014 some 9 months later than the estimate but I was one of the lucky ones, many had to wait a lot longer and some have even had to pay extra for delivery, having already paid it once as the company […]

Sending incoming call info to MQTT

I’ve used Asterisk at home since around 2004, originally using a clone of a Digium FXO card and later a Sipura SPA-3000 (later owned and branded by Linksys) to interface to my landline. When that server decommissioned itself (with a bang and bad smell) a year or so ago I switched over to the Asterisk based FreePBX on a […]

Switching Voice Notifications To Ivona

I had long used the unofficial Google speech API for voice notifications (TTS) as it has a very good, clear voice, much better than Festival which I had used previously. However late one night a couple of months ago this stopped working as Google started to redirect it to a captcha if you tried access it directly. […]

Letterbox Notifications

This was a quick project to add notifications for when I get real physical mail. This is something I’ve had on my mind since I made my first SMS doorbell notification system back in 2004 and I finally got around to it last month. First of all I picked up a cheap internal letterbox flap and fixed that […]

Wireless Sensor Battery Life 3+ Years On

I last blogged about this in December 2013 when the second version of my ATmega328 & DS18B20 based temperature sensor, installed on 29 December 2011, had just reached the 2 year mark on the original set of batteries. That’s pretty good going and I’d have been happy with that but how long would it last until those Energizer batteries […]

X10 and Home Easy with Node-RED

This is part of a series of posts I am doing describing some of the things I have been doing as part of the revamp of my home automation system. When I started on the home automation road in 2002 I began with a kit of 3 X10 modules and a CM12U PC interface which I […]

TinyTX & Tiny328 Sensors with Node-RED

Node-RED is currently taking the IoT world by storm, described as “A visual tool for wiring the Internet of Things” it is built on top of Node.js and is an open source project developed by IBM employees. It makes it easy to link various inputs and outputs adding simple or not so simple processing in […]