Saturday, June 27, 2020

Staircase Lighting - for a Smarter Home

Introduction

Almost a decade ago I made a PIC micro controlled staircase light timer. It has been working really well ever since and now time has come to upgrade it. This time I designed it around the ESP8266 WiFi module as most of my other projects these days. Having WiFi in the staircase timer allows it to be managed remotely and it also ties in nicely into my home automation system. Watch this space.

I know the cables could be better managed, but perfect is boring! :)


While getting a face lift, the device also got some cool new functions added which I will show below.

Friday, June 5, 2020

Geeking out on a DOA Wifi Smart Light Bulb

Introduction

Recently, I have tried a number of cheap WiFi smart bulbs. Usually, they arrive OK from China (although they are in serious need of weeding all the spyware in them), but this particular one failed to do more than a quick flash when I switched it on. No WiFi, no light, nothing, seemed dead.

Since I would have taken it apart even if it was working as expected, I quickly disassembled it to see what makes it tick, I hoped to find some clue as to what happened to it and make it work again.


Looked exactly like this, even when it was powered...