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TonyT

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About TonyT

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  1. So I'm poking about trying to decide on which pushbutton deadbolt lock I want to purchase and I notice that Zwave locks are $20 or $30, maybe even $40, more expensive than Zigbee. Any idea why? I prefer the idea of Zwave as Zigbee uses the same RF bandwidth as WiFi so there might be more interference in an apartment block. Ok, so now I can't find a good example but I know I saw it. <smile>
  2. Larry, thank your for the info and the links. I watched the first 10 minutes or so of the video and got what I needed. Very interesting indeed. So I'm getting closer to purchasing the SmartThnings hub instead of the Hubitat. Hah, it does indeed have the option to send emails. (I run my own email/web server.) So I can send myself text messages via email when I'm not home when the door sensors go off. (Which would come as a great surprise to me as I live by myself. <smile>)
  3. To me 5G means cell phone system which means a monthly fee. Now is that fee per device or group of devices or ???? Also the battery required to reach the nearest 5G tower/antenna is almost certainly going to be significant unless you're a block or two away. So me? I'd stick with the free, known protocols such as Zigbee or Zwave or RJ45. Also being a thrifty kinaa person I always look at those monthly fees with a great deal of skepticism. $5 hear and $30 there can add up over a year. Lots of red wine can be purchased instead of monthly fees. <smile>
  4. To add to my previous reply, the diagram I found in the past showed that Zigbee channel 23 or thereabouts, was the default Zigbee channel. It is right in the middle of the third 2.6 Ghz WiFi "bundle of channels". Which the metageek article I linked to above doesn't mention the default Zigbee channel. As I don't yet have a hub I can't test all these settings. If that is the case then in a crowded RF environment, ie a condo/apartment complex, there is bound to be interference of some sort. That article also states many Zigbee devices don't support channel 26 so it would appear that channel 25 is the best option. Also that article really doesn't talk about the condo/apt scenario either. So to summarize the metageek article Zigbee channel 25 is recommended as it has the least interference with WiFi. Now if that works in the real word, ie you folks, is another matter. And the Smart Home hub, with the Z-wave and Zigbee support should be placed 3 or 5 feet from a WiFi Access Point/router to reduce chances of interference.
  5. Will this new rules API work on the V3 hub or might it require a new hub?
  6. Yup, I hear you on the separation between the WiFi Access Point/router and the home automation hub. When I run a WiF4i analyzer app on my tablet I see that multiple explicit WiFi channels are grouped into three "bundles of channels". So when I looked at a Zigbee page a few weeks or month ago I saw the default Zigbee frequency being smack in the middle of the third commonly used WiFi bundle of channels. Of course I can't find that web page or diagram now. Here's an article I just found that goes into lots more detail. https://www.metageek.com/training/resources/zigbee-wifi-coexistence.html Which I hadn't realized you could do but then I haven't yet purchased a hub. So now that I know this I will configure my home automation hub to use a channel in betwen the Wifi "bundles of channels". I should also add that I have my amaterur radio license so I'm always interested in exactly how RF is being used and I'm well aware that the public bands can have interference. For example a new radar system in use at some military airports totally broke one particular neighbourhods garage door openers. Turns out the developer chose some cheap foreign garage door systems that were not well built and were using frquencies not authorized in North America for such use. Fortunately as this was still in the warranty period the developer had to replace several hundred garage door systems. Oh well.
  7. I was thinking in between Zigbee and WiFi. Wifi seems to be able to handle a crowded environment such as an apartment reasonably well bu then I tend to use the less crowded 5 Ghz band. Also the bandiwidth consumed by non video and non audio sensors is very small. It only takes a few dozen bytes to tell a switch to turn off or on. So I'm not at all worried about multiple Z-Wave or Zigbee systems in the same apartment building. So when it comes to Zigbee and WiFi.conflicts WiFi could "drown" out Zigbee or otherwise cause interference.
  8. On the subject of WiFi security there is vulnverability called KRACK Attack. Now it took the vendor of my five year old Wireless Access Points at least six months to introduce the patch for my specific model. Now if your ISP supplies your WiFi then hopefullyh they've updated the firmware but who knows.
  9. TonyT

    Wiki pages?

    The idea solution would require no admin work after setup but we knew that. <smile> I was wondering if your forum software had such an option which would just be easily to implement but I assume not. Can you setup forum security where all users can update all postings in that forum? Unlikely but I thought I'd ask. Or maybe users with five or ten postings so they are slightly trustworthy.
  10. Ignore this posting. I'm not sure how to delete a posting.
  11. So has anyone noticed any issues with Zigbee in an apartment or condo complex which has lots of WiFi Access Points/routers? (Zigbee sits right in the middle of one of three primary 2.5 Ghz WiFi "channels". Yes, that's somewhat oversimplifying.) Given a choice I'll use Z-Wave but if Zigbee devices are a lot cheaper well ...
  12. From what I can tell some Ikea products, including the Fyrtur, use the Zigbee protocol. Now yes there is a remote available which I will velcro to the inside of a door which I can use before I enter the living room. But ideally I'd like a hub, preferably the Hubitat, to know when dusk is and close the blinds automatically. Then broadcoast on my Google Home Mini's that the blinds are closed. I do see device handlers for the SmartThings hub but I'd prefer the Hubitat hub as I prefer local processing. I do see several light sensors available for Zigbee and Z-Wave so this should all be doable. Any comments or suggestions?
  13. Now this will be some work to locate suitable software, install and configure . But it might be nice to have a Wiki site to go along with the forums to make pages that have current knowledge. For example I'm thinknig of purchasing some Wyze products but then I discover they don't ship to Canada. And I have some questions on Wyze products for which I've found the answers by browsing many forum postings here. I'm also, currently, a fast reader but I will soon be using a text to speach reader. <sigh> Having a Wiki page with the basics of the Wyze platform described. Paragraphs such as which products require the Wyze sensor bridge and which don't. Information that's hard to figure out no the Wyze website. Note that I'm not at all suggesting that Brian actually create these pages. Let the users of thiese forums create and maintain the pages. And yes I'm full of ideas and very little use in actually implementing them. <smile>
  14. So I've started a discussion in the Newbie's forum as I'm severely visually impaired. So I thought I'd like to do a follow up request to all you folks. These kinds of vocie activated gadgets are a *HUGE* time saver and liberating to the visually impaired community. It's so easy to add a reminder or appointment or shopping list item to my Google Home Mini that pops up on my iPHone a second later that I'd use that feature even if I had full vision. But to be able to ask the smart speaker what are my reminders or appointments, the time, the weather, the forecast or to play the news or music, etc, etc. is so very liberating. As a non smart home automation gadget I bought a meat thermometer on eBay for $15. Now in the past if I had purchased it via a blind store it would've been $50 or $100. So these kinds of devices, including smart speakers, devices and smart phones are also financially liberating. As many of us are under or unemployed well .... So my basic point though is that I soon I will have to use audio only to do what you folks take for granted. So if a vendor offers an app on a smart phone but not integration with Google Assistant, Alexa or other please nag at them. Yes the app is nice but then I have to find the app, naviage yet another UI and so forth. Whereas if I can just ask or tell Alexa, Google, etc well that's a whole lot easier. P.S. One thing I'd like to see is the ability to have some Google Assistant rouitines respond only to my voice and not to anyone else's voice. The Google Assistant already has this when I ask four reminders or calendar entries. So why not for some routines? I can't remember the exact scenario now of course.
  15. Yes, I'm familiar with the Mcirosoft Seeing AI app and have it installed. Your seeing by ear is a very interesting concept but keep in mind that folks who have limited vision navigate their homes and other familiar places by touching halls and doorways. At least that's what I do when the lights are out. The fridge is to my right, sink straight ahead, stove to my left, etc. A very common complaint is when you or another family member leaves the dishwasher door open or something in the way while you walk or furniture that's been moved. I once stepped on the tail of a cat while at a relatives farm. I simply didn't see the cat in front of me. GE has a WiFi enabled microwave which isn't yet available in Canada but it will be highly useful soon. My patio door is just a regular door with an interior latch system to pull the door tight into the door seals. (It's -13 C or 8 American so we like door seals.) So I would think any magnetic door sensor would work. The voice unlock with a PIN is somewhat silly given that anyone who is inside just has to physically unlock the door. Now granted if you were trying to do this outside and you were connected to the WiFi then yeah I can sort of see why a PIN might be necessary. The reality though for me is that it's not a big deal to use a key to lock and unlock the door. So I might never get around to that one. And yes I'm familar with audio descriptions as I see those mentioned in the visual impairment support group I belong to in Facebook. I have no idea what that photo is supposed to mean. Or is it part of a patio door?
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