It is a little bit funny that the smartest room in the house is the one that belongs to our girls. If I had my way, it would be our room that had all the smart home gear... but my wife is completely against it. Not because of privacy or killer wireless radiation or anything like that... but because she likes the use of physical switches. Sigh...
... and trust me, it really gets annoying really fast when you have wired up a room for smart voice commands and someone keeps turning it all off at the wall!
So, I had bought some smart lights from Yeelight (shipped all the way from China via Gearbest) quite some time ago... and I had originally thought to slowly smarten up the house room by room. However, with the parent's room officially vetoed... I was a man with solutions looking for a problem to fix!
Luckily... that problem came to me pretty quickly! In the school mornings, it is next to impossible to wake the children... I guess that every parent knows that! However, for some reason, on the weekends and holidays, they wake up before the Sun rises! Not sure how that works out evolution-wise.... as you would think that waking up the parents when we can sleep in is a great way to cut the gene transmission short very quickly!
So, the girls learnt really quite quickly not to wake sleeping parents.. and would try to turn their own lights on. However, our light switches are relatively high... and the girls wouldn't get a chair to stand on, to turn them on... but they would instead take turns to try jumping and slapping the light switch instead! So, we would just hear... THUD, SLAP... THUD, SLAP.... THUD, SLAP... until they got it!
Seeing as I enjoy my relatively rare sleep in moments... I decided that this was a problem that could be fixed with home automation! A quick set up of an Alexa Dot on the wardrobe (with all buying and purchasing options turned OFF!) connected to a stereo system so the girls could turn on Spotify by asking Alexa.
The main lights of the room were also exchanged for smart LED bulbs, and the RGB light strip was attached behind the bed, stuck on the bed paneling between it and the wall. This would double as an alarm clock for school days... a slowly rising intensity from reds to yellows to imitate the rising of the Sun.
Meanwhile, the toddler in the bottom bed would have her cute little animal ball lights attached to a KASA smartplug (which could also interface with Alexa). Unfortunately, since installing this... I've had to remove the KASA plug as there is a vulnerability which could allow an attacker to make it overheat. However, she got her own RGB light strip instead... which she is more happy about, as it is the same as her big sister... and she is getting to be a big girl now!
So... with this set-up, the girls can turn on and off all the lights in their room with Alexa commands, listen to music and also set their own reading times before bed. Meanwhile, I get to sleep in on the weekends and the holidays without being woken up by crazy jumping noises! Well... that's not quite true, I still get woken up....
Meanwhile, my wife is being driven crazy by the fact that she seems to be the only person in the house that Alexa can't seem to understand... and she always forgets the names of the devices and the commands to activate them. The girls seem to manage...
Anyway... there is nothing funnier than listening to a grown woman screaming at a robotic voice assistant! From a different room of course... but after laughing my head off, I always just manually switch the lights from my phone!
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