Smart Thermostats

Last year (Nov. 2013) I decided to upgrade the old Honeywell relay thermostat in my office. I work in a 100 year old farmhouse. It still has the old registers and original duct work,register

but is powered by a high efficiency natural gas furnace. I looked around at time and found a cheap, but Wifi-capable thermostat. I picked the Motison Cyberstat. I have no affiliation with Motison; just a happy customer.

It has a web app interface on the website. You can create a shortcut link on your mobile phone.

My problem was that I never remembered to turn the heat down or the air conditioner off when I left work. Sometimes I don’t know if I’m going to go back to work or if I’ll end up just using a computer at home in the evening. I needed an automatic method for my thermostat to sense my presence. I downloaded IFTTT and found that it has channels for Honeywell and Google Nest, but nothing for the Cyberstat. IFTTT has a closed architecture. I posted a request, but the support pages are a black hole. Besides that, I think I have made a solid and exciting application.

There is a wordpress workaround that I considered using. There are several on github. It seems hacky. I wish there was an open source alternative to IFTTT or at least an open channel model.

I’m in the Android camp for my phone. I develop for iOS to pay the bills, but I have not owned one for anything besides testing since the original iPhone was released.  I’m still agog about my Galaxy S5.

I have a sample app that will accept SMS messages sent from IFTTT and then fire off a cgi-bin on a server to control my CyberStat. This method works, and just requires you bounce a message through the phone company and have your own server. I decided instead on a single App Android solution. For this problem Wifi triggers works well.



2 thoughts on “Smart Thermostats

  1. Thank you for the info. Trying to do something similar. Your post is the only thing helpful that comes up, but I’d like to see other approaches as well. What’s the wordpress workaround?

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