Originally Posted by Nosoforos
Home automation will continue to be irrelevant to most people as long as there isn't someone who will make it cool, affordable and pretty- and will somehow actually make it useful (or convince everyone it's useful).
But so far there's nothing out there that makes one go 'I want that!'. Google has to be the least capable of changing that. Too bad, we'll all continue DIY-ing around with x10, zwave, zigbee and whatever else...
How is turning lights on/off with a smart phone not cool? While the extra $50 spent on each insteon based Light switch in my house is considerably more than the $5 you could get a standard dimmer for, I think it can be considered affordable. Pretty? at worst it's aesthetically the same, the switches, whether x10, zwave, insteon (etc.) all look pretty much like decora switches, thermostats are comparable, most controls are out of sight, and then it only gets better, what's not pretty about color touch screens?
Lots of people go 'I want that!' when they see it, the problem here is lack of exposure, or people not even knowing what can be done. I myself have an OK system, poor man style done on a budget, it's insteon based lighting with an ISY, and whole home AV with iRule controls, both systems mesh nicely, and I plan to incorporate HVAC controls. I saved a good chunk of money by purchasing AV components and port server on eBay. I know of crestron, control4 and some others, but they're beyond my purchasing power. I know a lot can be done with these systems, and I also know there's a lot that I don't know about. That being said, I'm convinced HA can provide something beneficial to anyone, it's just a matter of figuring out what that is, and how to do it practically.
My biggest gripe is the lack of a universal protocol or gateway. This is where I feel Uncle Sam should step in ( I'm sure many feel it might be a little 'Big Brotherish' or anti-capitalistic, but I think it would be justified) I'm not saying the gov't should necessarily be able to control our homes, or OK, maybe a little, like dimming all lights down 10% if there's a pending brown out, is that such a big deal? But what really gets me is that I have to program my coffee maker! Really, why can't my HA controller turn it on, be it via a program, or at a certain time? I think ALL appliances and electronic devices should have either wifi or an rj45 connector, and some how communicate on a universal level.
I have a wall clock in my kitchen, on the opposite side of the room is my range, and directly above that is a microwave, is it really that difficult for somebody to figure out how to make them all read the same time? WTF! (excuse me, but that's just how I feel) somebody needs to take charge of this, I have this idea, but not a clue how to pull it off. Even my iPod and iPad have different times, how'd that happen? EVERY clock in this country, at the very least, should read the same (accounting for time zone differences of course) Time has exact units of measure, why shouldn't it be measured from a universal datum? We live in a world of such precision, where gas costs so damn much and yet it's cost is still measured to the tenth of a cent? Time is the most valuable commodity there is, but we're so forgiving with it's lack of accuracy, I just don't get it!
Sorry if I went off topic, but I don't think I ventured too far. Thanks for reading.