IVB\’s Home Theater and Home Automation

You don\’t have to spend a lot for that smarthome.

Keypads vs Vol Controls, locking down PCs, and more.

Posted by IVB on March 25, 2007

Ok, made some important realizations in the past few weeks.

1) On occasion, eBay really rocks. That concerto is working awesome, and i’ve now put up several keypads. More on that in the next point.

2) I was wrong. In 2nd tier rooms, equipment keypads rather than passive volume controls are actually a great idea because you can turn on a zone.  I’m finding that inevitably, we listen to the same dang XM station 80% of the time. For background music, it’s much easier to quickly turn on a zone and we find ourselves actually using the WHA more as a result.  I put 4 up (MBR, MBath, KBath, Breakfast Nook) and they rock.

3) I’ve relearned that not putting at least some governors on a machine is just a bad idea. I have a machine that my wife has put tons of internet crap on.  It has begun crashing massively, worst of all, twice during the webinar. I never use it for HA nor CQC, but it happened to be the only machine that I could get a microphone to work on last Friday.  I’ll reformat it, then put the lockdowns on.  It’s silly to own a machine that I can’t use applications reliably on.

4) I’ve already got something like 65 events, but it looks like I’ll need more. The plan is working, the wife has begun getting addicted to automated lighting. She now wants the entry lights to automatically come on at sunset if the security is in ArmedAway mode.  I’m hoping several more months of this will get her used to it, and i’ll get less pushback about putting in a hardwired Homeworks solution. When I casually brought that up 1 month ago to her, I was royally shot down and laughed out of the room.

5) I’ve decided to get my 5 year old her own PC. I’m going to use CQC to create a custom fullscreen page where she can only start the games that I let her (dora, etc), or play music in the “approved” genre. I’ll use the CQC media repo to put songs or playlists in there. That’ll be the first time I do truly “independent” systems both being run by CQC.

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