Saturday, December 26, 2009

ioBridge Sensors

I've been playing around with the ioBridge IO-204. This is a fun little gadget that allows you to hook up and control various devices in your home or office. The cool thing about ioBridge is that they have a web site for controlling and accessing the device. You plug it in and it connects up to the ioBridge website. You can then log into the website and configure the device. Since the IO-204 connects to their site, you don't have to muck with firewall issues or do any port forwarding on your router.

Since the servers at ioBridge provide the interface to the device at your home, you can easily create widgets that you can embed in your blog or web page. Here's one that shows the temperature in my basement.

I must say that it took me way too long to get this graph to work. The site is still pretty confusing. I had to poke around on the forums before I was able to get everything configured properly. For instance, I kept trying to create the temperature sensor as a digital input. It sure looks digital to me. But in ioBridge terms, digital really means binary and analog means a range of digital values. Go figure.

Anyway, I think they have the right approach and it was relatively simple to setup. For months I've had a similar device from Mi Casa Verde called the Vera and I have yet to be able to get a graph of temperatures out of it. The Vera will do a lot more, but the web integration for the IO-204 is much simpler.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wreath Thief Caught on

We've been alpha testing for a few months now. I got an email from one of our early users that his camera caught a thief in action. See the shots below.

Unfortunately they haven't caught the guy, yet. At least the neighbors have been warned and they know what the guy looks like so they can keep an eye out for him in the future.

Love is all you need

A touching video from Starbucks.

My favorites are the wacky folks from Japan and Denmark.

Click here to view on YouTube.