HomeKit Connected Fence Door Monitoring System

HomeKit Connected Fence Door Monitoring System

Summary The objective of this project is to create a solar powered, HomeKit connected outdoor fence door monitoring device. Once setup, the door’s state (i.e. open/close) can be monitored and used in automations within the HomeKit ecosystem. I’ve been using it for months now, and it has been working really well. See below a video of the system in action. This is not a difficult project, but there are several moving parts associated to it, so I’ll try to be thorough in the following sections....

June 23, 2021 · 9 min · L.R-S
Seeed Wio Terminal

Wio Terminal - All In One Microcontroller

The people at Seeed Studio have been busy working on a bunch of new devices. From IoT microcontrollers and development boards to Mini PCs running Windows and machine learning devices. They were kind enough to send me their new Wio Terminal to use it in one of my future projects, but since that will take a while, I just wanted to write a quick post about it. This device would be the equivalent of an All-In-One computer, at a microncontroller scale....

August 30, 2020 · 3 min · L.R-S

Building an Apple iBeacon with CircuitPython

iBeacons are Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) devices used in location awareness applications such as welcoming people as they arrive at an event or broadcasting information to compatible devices at a nearby museum exhibit. The term iBeacon is apple’s implementation of the technology and reportedly, is what they use at their stores to send notifications to iPhone users as they enter/leave the store. Another great application of iBeacons is general automation using iOS apps such as Shortcuts and Pushcut....

June 21, 2020 · 3 min · L.R-S

Building a Raspberry Pi Security Camera

Security cameras seem to be have gotten pretty popular in the last couple of months. I thought I’d share how I put together one using a Raspberry Pi Zero W and some additional components. The device has the following features: Powered by rechargeable battery. Battery charges via USB. Motion activated video (and photo) recording. IR LED equipped (night vision recording). Media saved locally (Raspberry Pi SD card), no need for Cloud storage or internet connection....

April 29, 2020 · 8 min · L.R-S
HomeKit compatible laser trip wire.

Building a HomeKit Compatible Laser Trip Wire With CircuitPython

This post describes how to build a HomeKit compatible electronic trip wire to detect motion. As opposed to the more common infrared motion detection, there aren’t many options for detecting movement by interrupting a line of sight between two points. There are some alternatives that use infrared diodes, but those are limited by a maximum distance of just a few inches/feet between the emitter and the receptor. This project attempts to solve that limitation by using a regular laser emitter and a photo transistor as a receptor, so that the maximum distance is only dependent on the laser’s output power and your ability of aiming it to the photo transistor from afar....

June 13, 2019 · 8 min · L.R-S