Internet of Things with Digisparks10th April 2017
Some time ago I bought a set of Nexa wireless sockets. They come with a remote and communicate over a 433Mhz custom protocol. However since I kept misplacing the remote I wanted to make the solution better. So I got a couple 433Mhz chips from AliExpress and connected them to a WeMos D1 mini ESP8266 chip. The ESP8266 is an Arduino compatible chip with built in WiFi and it's commonly used in home automation and such since it's super cheap at about $4. As time went on I also added an IR LED to control the TV to be able to control that as well from my phone. And all of this works fine, but I wanted to do more. The Nexa sockets are quite pricy, about $25 for a set of three that has a remote, and to add support for control through a website it's another $100 for a control-box that basically does the same as my $4 ESP8266. And this is something that irks me with smart-solutions, they are so expensive that if I wanted to invest into it I would really have to consider where to put the smart components. So I went on AliExpress and got a pack of $1 Digispark microcontrollers with some sub-dollar 433Mhz radios along with some relays, 5V power supplies, and sensors. An idea was born, create a simple protocol that would allow me to use these cheap components to wire up anything to a smart-system. Now I've had some time to work out some details and I've got a space heater and a couple temperature sensors hooked up. The protocol is designed to allow all sorts of different sensors and actuators but still be simple enough to implement onto the 6Kb Digispark. Looking forward to playing around with this more, will post more about the project here as it comes along.