offset \ˈȯf-ˌset\ noun

a force or influence that makes an opposing force ineffective or less effective

Some More Home Automation

Our place just got smarter ;) First thing to sort was a fiber optic connection. Getting the router to behave was a pain. One ISP had an abysmally bad router and I am very tired of dealing with the technical support that knows less than me and should know more. I could avoid this, scratch that, I should avoid this by always going with a provider that would either allow a personal router or have theirs act as a bridge so I don't have to destroy my local network every time. We canceled the existing contract with the ISP providing coax network and switched to fiber optics with another ISP. This second ISP was, as said, bad, so we had to cancel them as well within two weeks and switch to the third one using the same infrastructure. The speeds are still not as promised, but are at least a bit more stable, with a router that has miles more options than than I expected. I hooked up one external drive so it behaves like a simple NAS now, as well as streamlining the devices connected to the internal network. For the ones who want to know more, it's a Fritz!Box model.

Moving on from there, I've set up CCTV with Reolink cameras using ONVIF Home Assistant integration. I was able to hook into streams on that side with Picture Glance card showing it. The motion sensor had to be interfaced through the local REST endpoint because it wasn't available out of the box with the integration. Fortunately, configuring it was not complicated. It looks something like this:

  - platform: rest
  resource: http://camera.local.ip.address/api.cgi?cmd=GetMdState&user=username&password=password
  name: My Camera Motion
  scan_interval: 2
  value_template: "{{ value_json[0].value.state }}"
  device_class: motion

It can later be added in the Home Assistant for display and automations. I'd need to tweak movement detection so I can record and send notifications properly when away from home.

In other news, we also got some additional Tradfri lighting under the bed (but alas no sensor yet), a shortcut button to switch scenes (even though the same can be achieved with a phone and Home Assistant scripts, which we did, but we don't always have our phones on us), a signal repeater for ZigBee so I can extend the range of our mesh (for future projects), and this cool showerhead that is powered by dynamo so it shows the temperature of water both numerically and in LED color (I know, we've got nothing better to do).

We also got a Chromecast to skip overloading our Raspberry with things. It proved to be OK and it works. Disney's application on PS4 constantly crashes on us after 10 minutes and this is a workaround so we can watch the shows over there. It also works with the NAS because we can stream videos on it through BubbleCast app on Android.

There are things in the pipeline that I'm to do in the coming months regarding home automation. I am aware that I need to wait to get all the equipment that comes to mind, but it only means that I'll have more things to write about. With another COVID-19 variant out there and the increasing number of people we know getting sick, we're staying put this year. Who knows. We might end up watching Home Alone. Not just live it :D