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Finishing the Basement and a nice way to wake up.

Posted by Shinyshoes , 21 November 2013 · 1293 views

Its been over a year since my last update so I thought we were due for an entry to this blog.
 
The antenna extension seemed to work for the entire spring and summer, but started failing again this fall.  I contacted Dakota Alert for suggestions and the support person seems to think it is a faulty system.  Now I have to box it all up and send it back to them for Repair/replacement.  Hopefully this long standing issue will soon be behind me.
 
I started down the RX-V2500 Yamaha driver but didn't get very far.  I'm sure if i could get 1 single command to work then I would be off to the races but I can't seem to even get that far.....I'm not sure if i am abandoning this attempt or not.  The receiver I have does not have HDMI inputs so a receiver upgrade wont be too far into the future, but If I want to continue moving forward I need to do something.....
 
Speaking of HDMI, When I wired the house when we were building, I made the mistake of not running any HDMI cables because I didn't have any HDMI components. Big mistake.  I now own 3 devices that have HDMI as well as a TV with 4 HDMI inputs.  I am now retrofitting in 2 HDMI cables per TV.  Its a big pain to do but it would be much better than attempting it after the basement drywall goes up.  
 
I changed my ISP in October.  My old ISP was continually having issues with connectivity at my house so I finally gave up and gave them the boot.  I have only been with the new company for a short time but so far the speed tests and the wife's happiness have been much higher.
 
Home automation has been on the back burner for a while too.  We are starting to finish the basement so most of my time has been focused on that.  I did purchase a SAI UPB Starter kit for the switches in the basement so that will be something new to play with.  I have now finished all the framing except 1 wall.  I'm about 70% done the electrical and about 75% done the low voltage/HA wiring.  
 
As for Home Automation items, the only new thing I have to report is our new morning alarm.  I set up a reoccurring trigger in Premise that turns on the master bedroom audio zone at 0% volume and sets it to the computer audio input.  The computer then starts to play Pachelbel's Canons.  I wrote a script to slowly start raising the volume of the master bedroom zone while the song plays until it reaches 80% (what I determined was "max volume" for the morning).  Once the song ends I use the text to speech module and the environment Canada module to read me the current temperature and the forecast for today.  Then using the eventghost module to trigger a VBA script I wrote, it retrieves any appointments in mine or my wife's calendars and reads them to us.  It is very nice not to have to wake up to the screech of an alarm clock and having our schedules announced is a good way to get us thinking about the day. I am very happy with this project so far, with the only downfall being that if we have a vacation day or a stat holiday or something i have to adjust the scheduled trigger manually so the alarm wont wake us up early on a day off.  I'm not quite sure how to solve that one yet.
 
Anyhow, the immediate future will be primarily working on finishing up the basement.  Once that is complete I can get back to programming my MSC-400/MX-980 and getting all the A/V equipment working in premise.
 
 




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