home assistant/ifttt

Phil Plantier

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SoSH Member
Mar 7, 2002
2,566
I'd like to take some cautious first steps into a smart home setup. I'd like to do presence detection, but I'm not keen on giving that info to Google/Amazon (which is a silly line to draw, I understand).

Does anyone have experience with the open source Home Assistant and/or smart home apps that use IFTTT? How hard would it be to set up for someone who has basic Linux skills? Should I just learn to love our new overlords?

(I went back two years and didn't see a smart home thread, if I missed it I apologize)
 

cgori

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SoSH Member
Oct 2, 2004
2,446
SF, CA
If you do facebook, this group is semi-useful for this sort of stuff (it is SmartThings-centric but Home Assistant / IFTTT interplay comes up a fair bit):

Also this group for konnected.io, which I believe interfaces to HomeAssistant, but lots of other smarthome topics come up there from time to time:
(Konnected is a replacement for a home alarm that lets all the motion/door sensors become automation inputs, and then subscribe to a cheaper monitoring service. There's also a "piggyback" version that lets you keep your existing alarm+monitoring service and use the inputs for automation as well.)

I use a SmartThings for a hub, that is definitely easy enough to set up, but have thought about going over to HomeAssistant to have even more control, plus more/all local execution of routines. SmartThings can use WebCore/Pistons which gets you even more control but I haven't gone that far since I don't have anything complicated enough to merit that.

Lastly, I am assuming for presence detection you mean smart phone proximity, but I realize now you might mean motion sensors/other internal stuff. If you do mean smartphone proximity, supposedly life360 has the best implementation for SmartThings (I do not know if it has HomeAssistant integration though). I have so far gotten away with the native SmartThings smartphone presence detector, though it can be a little odd at times. Here's a thread on various presence detection options in SmartThings-land.
 

Scott Cooper's Grand Slam

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Jul 12, 2008
2,060
New England
I'd like to take some cautious first steps into a smart home setup. I'd like to do presence detection, but I'm not keen on giving that info to Google/Amazon (which is a silly line to draw, I understand).

Does anyone have experience with the open source Home Assistant and/or smart home apps that use IFTTT? How hard would it be to set up for someone who has basic Linux skills? Should I just learn to love our new overlords?

(I went back two years and didn't see a smart home thread, if I missed it I apologize)
Speaking of drawing arbitrary lines, I just bought a HomePod ($199 on sale at Costco) and so Apple's my smarthome hubn ow. It's probably naive, but they've sold me on being the least evil of Facebook/Apple/Amazon/Netflix/Google in terms of privacy and the most robust in terms of security. Apple is increasingly a services company and that temptation to monitor and monetize their users' data will probably get them too, but: for now, you could consider Apple here.
 

jercra

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Jul 31, 2006
1,943
Arvada, Co
Speaking of drawing arbitrary lines, I just bought a HomePod ($199 on sale at Costco) and so Apple's my smarthome hubn ow. It's probably naive, but they've sold me on being the least evil of Facebook/Apple/Amazon/Netflix/Google in terms of privacy and the most robust in terms of security. Apple is increasingly a services company and that temptation to monitor and monetize their users' data will probably get them too, but: for now, you could consider Apple here.
I'm curious how Netflix and Amazon are evil with privacy. If that's a concern then any cloud based HA is a mistake, and that includes things like Smartthings and Homepod. If you think Apple and Samsung aren't collecting your data then I've got a bridge for sale you may be interested in. There are some locally deployable open source HA solutions but they lack support for encrypted barrier controls in some protocols (like for front door locks and garage doors and such) and are convoluted to configure. Then there are commercial HA controllers like Homeseer that offer best of breed control of every device imaginable with no internet connectivity required and no data collection at all. It's not cheap and it can be totally convoluted to configure but once it's working, it stays working. It certainly has its own set of issues, but it's very secure at least. Ifttt is way too clunky, very limited in functionality, had high latency and requires every command traverse the public internet. Admittedly, I haven't used it in a couple of years so maybe it's better. If you're concerned about something like Alexa being your HA controller you should be concerned about IFTTT as well. For Homepod, if you're not already an Apple person, is it safe to assume that it should be the last option considered?
 

Phil Plantier

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SoSH Member
Mar 7, 2002
2,566
Thanks to both of you. I guess the good thing about using Apple is that it would be my only Apple product, and at least it wouldn't be more data that Google has, but I'm enough of a tinkerer that I'm interested in using a Raspberry Pi for the home hub.
 

jercra

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 31, 2006
1,943
Arvada, Co
Thanks to both of you. I guess the good thing about using Apple is that it would be my only Apple product, and at least it wouldn't be more data that Google has, but I'm enough of a tinkerer that I'm interested in using a Raspberry Pi for the home hub.
If that's the case and you're not initially worried about door locks then check out https://www.openhab.org. There's a whole Raspberry Pi section.

Edit: Actually, it appears secure device inclusion is now supported by OpenHAB. It may be time for me to take a deeper look at it again as well. Homeseer's events are so confusing and frequently random that literally anything else would probably be better.
 
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