Open Source

Anyone for Pi? Mods and hacks for the Raspberry Pi

Forgot to turn off the bathroom light in the morning? That's not a problem with this home-automation project.

Here the Pi is being used to connect to a home fitted with sensors and switches that allow the house to be remotely monitored and controlled.

The system can monitor data such as the temperature in individual rooms, the electricity consumption of the house, or how much oil is in a heating system tank. It also allows the user to control electrical fittings, performing tasks such as switching on and off lights, towel rails or even a fountain.

The house, seen here, is on the Isle of Wight off the south coast of England and can be controlled and monitored via a mobile phone app or web interface.

In a demo of the project, lights and the fountain are switched on and off using a web interface, by someone based 50 miles away in Basingstoke.

The Pi-based system is using the Liberty Profile for IBM's WebSphere application server to interface with telemetry based on the MQQT messaging protocol, which is handled by IBM's Really Small Message Broker (RSMB) messaging server.

The project has been set up by Andy Stanford-Clark and Simon Maple, of IBM, who used Stanford-Clark's house as a testbed for the system.

Screenshot: WASdev/

By Nick Heath

Nick Heath is a computer science student and was formerly a journalist at TechRepublic and ZDNet.