Open-Source Building Automation
Supla is an open-source way to add Internet-connected features to the infrastructure of any building. It consists of software libraries for setting up your own automation modules, mobile apps for controlling them from your smartphone, and a cloud service to manage the back-end setup — all free to use.
It’s a very DIY approach, with the assumption that users will be comfortable building their own electronics projects from scratch. To get started you’ll need a Raspberry Pi, Arduino or ESP8266development board; Supla offers software packages for each system. Then you can wire up sensors and actuators to automate lighting, garage doors, window blinds, door locks, appliances and other building elements.
Mobile apps are available for Android and iOS, and Supla’s creators are providing a free cloud service so you can access and control your devices from anywhere with an Internet connection. They’ve also released the source code for setting up your own Supla server.
The requirement for tinkering may be a barrier to some, but Supla’s open-source approach offers a more flexible alternative to traditional building automation systems, which have to be installed during construction. It also has potential as a more unified solution than cobbling together a smart building from a mish-mash of standalone retail products.