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6. Security > 70. Know Who’s Home

Know Who’s Home

Knowing who is at home is an essential building block for smart home automation. You can easily signal your house that you’re leaving, and when you’ve come home, so that your automations can react accordingly.

Almost all the scripts in my home automation system rely on knowing either that the house is currently unoccupied, or which of the house members is away. For example, when my wife is traveling for work, her automated wake-up alarm [Hack #47] does not sound off. If someone comes to our front door when nobody is at home, the porch light is turned on for a few minutes [Hack #74] and a message is sent to my cell phone, alerting me to check for a package delivery when I return. Another example is when we have visitors staying overnight. The automation system also knows we have houseguests, so it stops controlling the lights in the guest bedroom so as not to perturb our friends who are used to good, old-fashioned manually controlled lighting.


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