Home Automation Introduction

I had gotten into the home automation technology without really realizing it, back in 2007, when I had some X10 attachments incorporated into my ADT Home Alarm system. At the time, I had it setup for turning on table lamps and a floor lamp, using a schedule that I programmed into the alarm base station. It suited my purpose well, especially since I was frequently away from home, working out of state for up to several days at a time.

Currently, I am using several Amazon Echo Dots, in combination with a Smart Display, Smart Plugs, Smart Bulbs and Cameras.

My goal with this webpage is to chronicle my use of various Smart devices and the Internet of Things (IoT). I plan on covering various methods of connecting and using devices to make life easier. It will cover the devices that I am familiar with, Smart Plugs, Smart Bulbs, cameras and Smart TVs.

Affiliate disclosure - Please note that some of the links on this webpage are affiliate links. This means that if you click on one of the links, I may receive a small commission. This helps, to a small degree, to support my website and make free content. If there are any products mentioned in the context of my webpage, then I have actually used them. Thank you for your support!

Smart Speakers

Amazon Echo Dot (4th Generation) Smart Speaker with Alexa

When used in conjunction with Bluetooth devices, SmartSpeakers can be used as a remote speaker. An example of that use which I frequently use is with my work computer. My work computer is a desktop computer which doesn't have built-in speakers. By using a Bluetooth transmit/receive adapter, such as the Trond adapter, plugged into the headphones jack on the front of the computer, I can wirelessly connect the computer to my Echo Dot, and thus listen to my training material through the Dot.

Amazon Echo Dot (3rd Generation) Smart Speaker with Alexa

I currently have two of this Smart Speaker. I like the sound from them, as well as the fabric finish.

Smart TVs

Amazon Fire TV Stick

The Fire TV Stick Gen 1 is not compatible with the Wyze Skill

Smart Displays

Amazon Show 5 Smart Display

Smart Plugs/Smart Outlets

The HBN-brand Smart outlet is awesome. You can control each of the outlets individually, using Alexa or the HBN app. The other nice thing about item is that it takes up one outlet, but provides two outlets. These are useful for purposes such as scheduling lights or as a fail-safe for 3D printing, to be able to remotely unplug a 3D printer should the print go awry. If you would like to control these outlets directly, without using the app or Alexa, you can simply tap the switch that is integrated into the plugs, between the two outlets. Naturally, you must have a WiFi network at the location that you want to use these.

Network Extenders

Amazon eero Mesh Network

TP-Link RE270K WiFi Range Extender with Smart Plug

Wireless Cameras


To connect to a Wyze camera with Alexa, you must enable the Wyze skill. Wyze Cam V1 is not supported by the Wyze Skill.

Google Nest Cams

You must first enable the Google Nest skill. You will need to link your Google Nest account to Alexa. Then, under the Partner Connections Manager, you need to Turn on access to your home's information and then proceed to step 2, Select devices to connect with Amazon Alexa. You will be prompted to Grant Amazon Alexa to link with your Google account, choose Allow. Next, you will need to grant Amazon Alexa permission to see and/or control the devices that you selected. Again, select Allow. The next step is to Confirm your choices, select Allow.Then, your Google Nest account has been successfully linked.

Arduino Microcontrollers


My Arduino Microcontrollers Hydroponics Controller