Some of you may have been wondering why it’s taking so long to get Philips Hue support implemented, especially now that Philips has released official documentation for the API. The reason is that I’ve been working on a new application that satisfies a very cool feature request.
So what have you been doing all this time?
I’m pleased to announce the release of version 1.0 of a new application, the Nitrogen Logic PC Remote. This application allows you to run commands on any Java-enabled PC (Linux, Mac, or Windows) in response to zone events from one or more Depth Camera Controllers. Don’t worry, you can still disable the Java plugin in your browser.
I wrote this application to allow the Depth Camera Controller to interface with home automation systems that use PC command lines to deliver events to the automation software. One example of such a system is iHouse Home Automation. Thanks to a dedicated user’s feature requests and beta testing, this application is now available for the benefit of all Nitrogen Logic users.
What can I do with the Nitrogen Logic PC Remote?
The application allows the creation of conditional “triggers”, or command lines
that will be executed in response to a certain parameter (such as whether a zone
is occupied, or a zone’s surface area) reaching a defined value. The command
line’s parameters may include the controller address, zone name, parameter name,
and parameter value that triggered the command line, through the use of
substitution variables (e.g.
%ipercent% anywhere in a command’s argument will
be substitued with the triggering parameter’s value as a percentage of its
defined range, rounded to the nearest integer).
By building a list of triggers for the desired zones and parameters, you can control a command-line-based automation system using a Depth Camera Controller. In addition to controlling an automation system, you can also do things like start a video player when someone walks into a zone, shut down a computer when someone leaves a zone (if you are running the application as a user with shutdown rights), run custom scripts on the PC in response to changes in the room’s ambient light level – basically anything you can do from a PC’s command line can be triggered by zone events from a Depth Camera Controller.
The Nitrogen Logic PC Remote is also designed with security in mind. It uses user-defined command lines and connects directly to a Depth Camera Controller (instead of the other way around) to minimize the risk of commands being run by any malicious device or application that finds its way onto your private network.