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6. Security > 74. Who’s There?

Who’s There?

It’s said that burglary is often a crime of opportunity. This hack discusses methods for using your home automation system to welcome visitors and convince prowlers to look elsewhere for an easier target.

I want my home to be both polite and defensive. That is, a visitor who comes to the door should feel welcome, but if I’m not home, I don’t want it to be glaringly obvious that he’s all alone. Here are two scenarios.

If the house is unoccupied and a visitor approaches the front door, he hears a radio playing softly inside. If it’s after dark, the porch light brightens to full power, the visitor hears a dog barking, and a minute later a light inside the house turns on.

If I’m home when the visitor arrives, his presence is announced before he has a chance to ring the doorbell. If it’s dark outside, the porch light is turned up, only to return automatically to its dimmed state a few minutes after I let the visitor in the door. Later, when I open the door to see him out, the porch light brightens again to light his way.


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