Criteria and choices
Since this project is primarily a DYI project, it is important that both software and hardware are cheap and readily available. It is also important that the “products” are well documented and preferably has an active user community online.
We have evaluated several hardware and software systems like “Blynk” and IoT systems from the big players like Amazon, Google and MicroSoft. As of today it looks like we will fall down on Home Assistant on Raspberry Pi and Arduino IDE on ESP32 as products for further experimentation.
Home Assistant are an open source home automation software system that puts local control and privacy first. Powered by a worldwide community of tinkerers and DIY enthusiasts. Perfect to run on a Raspberry Pi or a local Linux server. It is well integrated with other IoT systems and has a WEB interface for visually controlling our gadgets.
ESP32 are a cheap but verry capable microcontroller. It is engineered for IoT applications and has WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities built in combined with an ultra-low power consumption. It is also supported in the Arduino IDE for easy software development. Arduino are a defacto standard for DIY automation projects.