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Thread - a new networking protocol to unite the IoT initiated by Nest, ARM, and Samsung and others.

Jul 16 2014 11:27 PM | Work2Play in News

Things seem to be heating up in the battle to bring the Internet of Things to fruition.  The latest such entry into this market may just be the game changer we've been looking for to start bringing all these different systems together.  We've seen plenty of other attempts at standardizing communication in our homes - but they've all gone their own way trying to create the "best" - and instead it seems we've ended up with too many choices.  the Thread Group hopes to change this.

Read story →    15 comments    -----    Breaking News, Appliances and 3 more...

New HomeSeer Products Announced

Sep 08 2014 02:19 PM | BraveSirRobbin in News

HomeSeer announced two new products this week, a Z-Wave to ASCII module and a Z-Wave night-light module/multi-sensor.
Both are pretty interesting and should fill some niches in a Z-Wave users automation system.

Read story →    7 comments    -----    Homeseer Technologies, Z-Wave

Kidde Recalls Smoke Alarms Due to Alarm Failure

Sep 18 2014 03:25 PM | BraveSirRobbin in News

I'm sure these are not popular with our forum members, but just in case here is some information I came across FYI.

Read story →    1 comments    -----    Smoke Detectors

HomeSeer unveils Z-NET

Jan 07 2015 10:56 PM | BraveSirRobbin in News

HomeSeer unveils Z-NET, an IP-based Z-Wave network interface for advanced home automation systems. Z-NET supports the latest Z-Wave technologies and includes a highly optimized antenna design for superior range and performance. Since Z-NET is IP-based, it may be installed virtually anywhere in the home. The unit includes a built-in LAN port and an optional USB-WiFi adapter is also available.

Attachments: Attached Image: homeseerznet.png
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Consumer Safety Notice for Nest Protect: Smoke + CO Alarm

Apr 04 2014 09:17 AM | Dan (electron) in News

It looks like certain conditions might trigger the 'Wave' feature unintentionally, disabling the Nest Protect.
Nest CEO announced the halt of sales of the Nest Protect Smoke/CO Alarm, as the 'Wave' features is enabled by default, while recommending all customers turn off the 'Wave' feature, which allows a customer to disable the alarm by waving your hand.
Nest is working on bringing back this feature, but more testing and new approval from several agencies is required, which can take several months.
If your unit is connected to your network, it will supposedly turn the Wave feature off within 24 hours.  See below for the full press release which includes steps to help you disable this feature.
This issue was discovered during lab testing, no injuries were reported.

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Luna: Turn Your Bed into a Smartbed

Jan 27 2015 04:59 PM | Dan (electron) in News

  Luna is a mattress 'smart cover' which allows dual-zone temperature control, sleep tracking, smart alarm and some other features.  They just launched their product via an IndieGoGo campaign which already met its $100,000 USD goal in a mat...

Attachments: Attached Image: lunasleep1.jpg
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New ELK Wireless Recessed Door Sensor And Glass Break Sensor Coming Soon

Mar 14 2014 02:58 PM | Dan (electron) in News

It has been a while since there have been product announcements from ELK, but it looks like we have 2 new sensors on their way, designed to work with the latest 2-way RF transceiver.ELK-6023 Wireless Recessed Door Sensor: a 2-way recessed door sensor,...

Read story →    7 comments    -----    ELK, Wireless, Sensors

INSTEON Announces Connectivity to Nest Learning Thermostat

Mar 14 2014 02:42 PM | Dan (electron) in News

INSTEON announced they now support the popular Nest learning thermostat via their INSTEON Hub product.  I'm not sure if this is the result of the Google buyout (and relaxing API access), or if INSTEON has a partnership with Google/Nest Labs.
Either way, this is pretty interesting, and I'm sure more and more packages will support this thermostat.  See below for the full press release.

Read story →    1 comments    -----    INSTEON, SmartHome, SmartLabs and 1 more...

Amazon Expanding Alexa SmartHome Team

Mar 31 2017 10:23 AM | Dan (electron) in News

A CocoonTech member working for Amazon's Alexa Home Automation division has shared that Amazon is looking to fill more positions in this category.   Check this thread for more information.

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How to access your home network remotely using SSH and your DD-WRT based router

Mar 07 2011 08:52 PM | Dan (electron) in News

This tutorial will show you how to get up and running with SSH tunneling on a router running DD-WRT. While there won't be any help with Tomato I'm sure it's just as easy to implement. The steps will include configuring the router for DDNS and SSH with a key pair for security, authenticating and tunneling with PuTTY, and setting up Windows file sharing. Windows 7 will be used for this tutorial as it requires a couple more steps than XP.                              

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Wi-Fi Finally a Wi-Fi enabled light switch for the DIY crowd (UPDATED)

Feb 08 2013 11:14 AM | Dan (electron) in News

As some of you might know, I have very strong feelings towards Wi-Fi enabled light switches.  I have been wanting them for  years, and never understood why no one is making them for the DIY crowd, especially since the technology exists.  It looks like someone finally accepted the challenge and started an IndieGoGo campaign (similar to KickStarter) to get this product of the ground.
The result is the Ube WiFi multi-touch smart light dimmer.  It's a pretty sharp looking switch, and initial responses seem to be pretty positive.  It comes in 2 versions, a multi-touch version, and one with the traditional rocker.  Both versions will have a built-in motion sensor to automatically turn on the back-lighting once you approach the switch.
Can't wait to get my hands on one of these, especially with the really affordable pricing model (MSRP expected to be around $70)!

Attachments: Attached Image: lgtexttest1.jpgAttached Image: lightscene1.jpg
Read story →    36 comments    -----    Wi-Fi, IndieGoGo, Hardware

Schlage LiNK Door Lock and Remote Home-Management System Now Available in Lowe's Stores

Jun 01 2009 07:25 AM | Dan (electron) in News

Z-Wave logoSchlage has announced that their Z-Wave compatible LiNK hardware is now available at your local Lowe's store (not just Lowes.com).  While the press release contains a lot of marketing, it does contain some pricing info and other details you might not be aware of yet.  I like the idea of being able to buy home automation hardware locally, hopefully it's not a temporary thing, as other manufacturers in the past have tried and failed.  See the press release below for more details.

CARMEL, IN, June 1, 2009 – Schlage®, the most trusted brand in door locks, announced today that its innovative Schlage LiNK System is now available in more than 650 Lowe’s home improvement stores. The first-of-its-kind remote home-management system incorporates Z-Wave® wireless technology, allowing homeowners to remotely lock/unlock and monitor entry to doors equipped with Schlage’s wireless keypad locks. Remote access can be granted from a computer or Web-enabled mobile phone, including Apple’s iPhone and RIM’s BlackBerry smartphones.  

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How to configure your computer with No-IP.com

Jan 11 2004 07:23 AM | Dan (electron) in News

When accessing your computer from the Internet you need to know its (or your firewall's) IP address. The problem is you probably do not have a permanent (external) IP address assigned to you by your DSL or Cable Company. You are probably automatically assigned your IP address instead by DHCP (dynamic host connectivity protocol). Thus your IP address could change periodically. So how are you going to know your IP address without having to look it up on your computer (or firewall) daily?

You can use a free service and utility called No-IP from No-IP.com. This service will let you set up a free host name which can then point to your IP address, a specific port on your firewall, or redirect the host name to another host name.

A free utility from No-IP will then be run in the background on your computer that will let this host name know what your current (external) IP is.

This way your host name will always relate to the current IP of your computer.

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Schlage announces availability of the Trane Z-Wave thermostat

Jun 09 2009 01:38 PM | Dan (electron) in News

Z-Wave logoSchlage has announced their new Z-Wave based Trane thermostat is now available for purchase from Lowes.com and in select Lowes retail stores.  It is retailing for $149 and is compatible with their LiNK portal, meaning it can be managed remotely from your cellphone.  Continue reading for the features, specifications and the press release which contains many more details.


Features and Benefits

  • Energy Management Thermostat can be added to the Z-wave network within your home
  • Add the Trane Remote Energy Management Thermostat to your Schlage LiNK system to remotely monitor and control your thermostat from anywhere with any internet enabled computer and most internet enabled cell phones
  • Actively manage the energy use within your home and reduce energy consumption up to 15% with the energy savings schedule
  • When paired with the Schlage wireless bridge, utilize advanced thermostat features through the Schlage LiNK web portal
  • Energy Star compliant

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Inovelli Z-Wave Switch Review

Jan 04 2018 03:07 PM | BraveSirRobbin in News

Inovelli now provides Z-Wave light switches for your home automation projects!  Their switches are an attractive solution for your automated light switching needs in they do not require that you purchase a 'companion' switch for three-way lighting applications.  You can use the existing switch for the companion.  Since the switch costs around $30 this is an attractive choice that our forum members should consider.
UPDATE 6-23-2019:  I had yet another appliance (on/off) switch fail! :(

Attachments: Attached Image: Association Setting.jpgAttached Image: Adjust1.jpgAttached Image: Switch Plain.jpgAttached Image: Switch Pic Oview.jpgAttached Image: Non Smart Switch.jpgAttached Image: HomeSeer Correct Display Status.jpgAttached Image: Kit.jpgAttached Image: Status Graphics.jpgAttached Image: Load Side Switch.jpgAttached Image: inovelli with homeseer errors.jpgAttached File  CocoonTech Inovelli Z-Wave Switch Review - Publish Version.pdf   979.14K   176 downloads
Read story →    13 comments    -----    Z-Wave

How to create a spanned volume in Windows XP

Feb 12 2004 12:07 PM | Dan (electron) in News

A spanned volume allows you to combine several hard drives/partitions to create a new single 'volume'. Why would you want to do this? I personally needed this for my home built DVR/HTPC. I have a 60GB drive and an 80GB drive, but my OS only requires around 10 gigs. Since most dvr software packages don't support storing the video files to multiple drives, I would have to either choose the 80GB drive, or the remaining 50GB on my first drive. As recording in mpeg2 can take up several gigabytes per hour, depending on the quality settings, you really want to grab every gigabyte you can.

With spanning, you can combine the 50GB on the first drive with the 80GB on the second drive, and have one single 150GB drive. You are also able to increase the size of the spanned volume by extending it onto additional dynamic disks. Windows supports 5 types of dynamic volumes: simple, spanned, striped, mirrored and Raid-5. In order to get the most space out of our hard drives, we will use spanned. You can extend a spanned volume onto a maximum of 32 dynamic disks.

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Nov 29 2010 12:32 PM | Dan (electron) in News


  • You must be a registered CocoonTech.com member
  • Duplicate entries will automatically disqualify you from giveaway
  • Vendors, manufacturers and CT staff are not allowed to participate
  • If there is a question involved, you must provide the correct answer in order to qualify
  • You must be located in the contiguous United States.  Some giveaways will also be open to Canadians (this will be specifically mentioned)
  • Winner must respond to e-mail/PM within 48 hours, or a new winner will be selected
  • Prizes are NOT transferable
  • Rules may be subject to change

Current Giveaways

  • n/a

Previous Giveaways

  • $25 iTunes Gift Card (winner: Steve)
  • Total Control: MultiCam4 Edition for BlackBerry (winner: WayneW)
  • Total Control: MultiCam4 Edition for Android (winner: Quixote1)
  • ElkDroid (winner: Helheim)
  • eKeypad Pro (winner: darryl)
  • Web Mountain Technologies Remote UPB Controller (The correct answer was "TIM-01" - Gerasha)
  • AutomatedOutlet.com Gift Certificates ($75/$50/$25) - All Members Edition (The correct answer was "CT*AMEE - anthonylavado, Wizzer and nexus99)
  • Total Control: MultiCam4 Edition for iPhone (winner: TurboSam)
  • AARtech Canada INSTEON Dimmer Kit (The correct answer was "Yes", AARtech sells gift certificates - winner: kccustom)
  • Simply Automated UPB Dimmer Kit (The correct answer was "UCQT-40" - winner: mwne2nks)
  • RemoteShoppe PS3MINI Bundle (The correct answer was "$99.95" - winner: iostream212)
  • VidaBox iPad Wall Mount (The correct answer was "7" - winner: Neurorad)
  • HomeSeer (The correct answer was "Keware Technologies" - winner: kkapp)
  • Elve (The correct answer was "J9 Automation Engine" - winner: George M)
  • AutomatedOutlet.com Gift Certificates ($75/$50/$25) (The correct answer was "Yes", AO is a CTVA member - winners: String, Monk and 2blackbelt)
  • Indigo Pro 4.1 (Indigo supports INSTEON, so the correct answer was "Yes" - winner: Ripper99)
  • CQC (The CQC trial is 40 days - winner: judge_l)

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KickStarter LIFX accepting orders for 2nd batch of Wi-Fi RGB LED bulbs

Mar 22 2013 06:31 AM | Dan (electron) in News

LIFX is a Wi-Fi controlled RGB LED light bulb (~900 Lumens/80W), created via a KickStarter campaign last November.  Some solid progress has been made, and since production on the first batch is in full progress, they have started accepting orders via their store for a 2nd batch, with a 15% discount if you use coupon code KSBATCH2 (the LIFX bulb retails @ $79), which should bring the total down to around $64.
The LIFX bulb uses your Wi-Fi network at home, and an open API allows you to control the bulb, including the colors.  They already have an app for iOS, the app for Android will be released before the first batch ships, and they are also working on other interesting integration examples.
Check below for their latest video which contains more information about production and their plans.
Personally, I ordered 4 of these bulbs, allowing me to simulate a sunrise, use them as indicators for US mail waiting in my mailbox, security alerts, adjust exterior lighting to match holidays, and even use them as holiday decorations.  So much potential!
Posted Image

Read story →    0 comments    -----    KickStarter, Wi-Fi, LED

How to configure port forwarding on your Linksys router

Jan 11 2004 07:07 AM | Dan (electron) in News

The Linksys Firewall/Router enables the internal “LAN” side of your network to be isolated/protected from the external “WAN” side of the Internet. Thus your home will only have one external IP address that is shared by all the internal computers in your home. When you set up a web server on a computer on the LAN side (such as Homeseer) you select a port number to run that web server on.

When you need to access this web server from an external (outside your home) internet connection, you need to know the IP address of the Linksys Firewall/Router, plus have port forwarding set up so the Linksys box knows what computer to route the port number request to.

The Linksys box should already be connected between your cable or DSL box and your computers. All of the below instructions should be run on the internal LAN computer that you plan on running your web server on for simplicity. It is also assumed that no modifications have previously been performed on the Linksys setup menus.

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More Control4 ZigBee light switches on the way

May 20 2009 08:54 AM | Dan (electron) in News

Control4 logoControl4 has been working hard it looks like.  There are 3 more devices in the pipeline, which I assume will be released soon.

C4-SW1-Z Wireless Switch

120VAC +/-10% 50/60hz, 300 mW off, 400 mW on

Supported Load Types and Ratings:
120 VAC 1000 W Resistive
120 VAC 500 W Tungsten
120 VAC 1000 W Electronic Low voltage
120 VAC 1000 W Magnetic Low Voltage
This device requires a neutral AC connectio


C4-DIM1-Z Wireless Dimmer

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Dec 01 2010 10:59 AM | Dan (electron) in News


CocoonTech Lists is our attempt to collect, organize and present data in the most efficient way to readers.  Check out the Lists below for an example, and don't hesitate to contact us if you have any comments.


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KickStarter: Digital Wi-Fi Shades for your Home

Apr 19 2013 04:16 PM | Dan (electron) in News

Here's another rather interesting KickStarter project, with potential big implications if they can deliver on their promises.
Back in January, we spotted this product during the CES expo, and even covered it here.

Read story →    2 comments    -----    Wi-Fi

RCS announces the TW43 Wi-Fi thermostat

Mar 17 2009 08:16 AM | Dan (electron) in News

 While I haven't found any official press releases yet, it looks like RCS just announced the availability of a new Wi-Fi thermostat.

RCS TW43 Wi-Fi thermostat


  • New All-in-One DesignWi-Fi Enabled Thermostat
  • iPhone Compatible
  • Compatible with Wi-Fi Networks ? Easy Set Up
  • Thermostat Control Program Software Included
  • Standard or Heat Pump HVAC Systems
  • 128x64 Backlit Graphical Display
  • 6 Buttons with On Screen Labels
  • Remote Control of Thermostat Functions
  • Optional Remote Sensors
  • Wall mount or mounts on single-gang junction box

"The TW43 is a Wi-Fi enabled wireless digital thermostat, designed to control HVAC systems. The TW43 contains a robust thermostat interface and is designed for use with networked systems where remote monitoring and/or remote control are desired."

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Software New iRule 3.0 for iOS release adds support for Vera, ISY and more

Mar 18 2013 08:17 PM | Dan (electron) in News

The iRule folks have been pretty busy, as their new iOS iRule 3.0 release adds support for the popular Mi Casa Verde Vera controller, and the Universal Devices ISY series, which will make the app extremely useful to many more people.  There were many other new features, which you can find in the announcement posted below.

Read story →    0 comments    -----    Software, iPad

First ELK M1 application for Android now available!

Aug 20 2010 06:00 AM | Dan (electron) in News

ElkDroid logoIn case you haven't heard yet, Android based phones are selling REALLY well.  The Android Market is growing rapidly, and developers are finally starting to really focus on the Android platform.  It also looks like the first home automation applications are starting to trickle in, which is good news for Android users.  The iPhone platform offers many home automation clients, and it's only a matter of time before the same apps will be available on Android.

A user on the forums named KentDub has created the first ELK M1 compatible client for the Android platform.  I shot a quick video showcasing what the software can do, and how well it works.  The video was shot in a hurry, so I didn't have much time to edit it, but it does give you a good sense of what the app offers.  Click 'Read more' to watch the video.

The app was JUST released, and can now be purchased for $99.  While that price does seem high, it is for the 'Pro' version, which includes all future updates (including new features).

ElkDroid ScreenShot 1 ElkDroid ScreenShot 2

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