Impatience as Impetus: Building Alexa Sonos Integration

I’m impatient. I like new toys and new technologies and I generally don’t want to wait to play with them. We’ve been happy Sonos customers for years now, and Alexa customers since the UK launch. So when Sonos and Amazon announced a partnership to directly integrate the two in August last year, I was cautiously optimistic, albeit impatient to see it working. They promised a beta in 2016 and a launch in early 2017. I didn’t hear anything for the rest of that year, and wondered when we’d get an update on progress… Continue reading

Home Automation Today

After my summary post on the various systems I have in the house – and their varying levels of complexiy – Alex posted this response:

Alex Shearer on Facebook

Alex raises a good point. Not that he’s a simpleton, that seems a little unfair, but that it would be useful to understand where to start today. Would I make the same technology choices based on the kit that is available to buy right now – three years after I started? Continue reading

So, tell me about this home automation thing.

I was asked two related questions yesterday:

How much do I need to spend on home automation?

and

What can your house actually do, anyway?

The answer to the first question is nothing. Nobody needs home automation. How much you want to spend, however, is related to the second question. What can my house do, and how badly do you want any of the same capabilities? I promised to detail what we have running to inform their decisions about how far they want to take things.

A word of warning though: home automation is one of those technologies that once you start using it, you quickly wonder how you lived without it. Continue reading