Smart home series – Part 0 – Starting point

Posted by Gjermund Bjaanes on September 20, 2015

Welcome to a brand new series on making my home smart!

This series is all about IoT, embedded devices and smart appliances. I am going to take you through my journey within all of these exiting things!


Smart house illustration


Why do I want to do this?

I am currently starting to get into making my home smarter. I want things to be easier in my house, and I see many places where sensors and data would make that happen. I just want to spend less time remembering to turn off the lights, and more time focusing on the things that matter; programming and technology.


For instance, me and my girlfriend is super bad at remembering to water our plants. They die. Quickly. I want the plant to tell me when it needs to be watered, instead of me having to remember it. I also want to keep track of how each plant is doing over time, so that I can learn a bit about it.

A soil moisture sensor, an Arduino, and some sort of system to push the data around everywhere it needs to be might solve that particular problem.


There are also a bunch of other things I can think about (eg. turn on and off lights automatically based on certain parameters), and I want to make these things myself. Else, it would be darn expensive (might be anyways) and no fun. Half the fun is making stuff, right?


Starting point

In terms of hardware, I have a couple of things already. I have an Arduino to do some prototyping, a lot of resistors, a soldering iron, a raspberry pi to run… something on… and a bunch of sensor on the way in the mail.

All my hardware looking real messy

All my hardware looking real messy - like it's supposed to!

In terms of knowledge I am basically starting from scratch. I don’t remember much electricity theory, I don’t know much about programming on these devices, and I have no clue how to get them integrated (or make them permanent; aka not a prototype).


What to expect

So, in this series I will share my experiences while learning all of this stuff. Learning about the Internet of Things, embedded devices and how to make your own smart appliances.

I’ll try so share everything I learn, so that if anyone want to follow along, they can.

I am very much looking forward to making my house smart and blogging about it while doing it.

Follow me on Twitter: @gjermundbjaanes