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#1 Bal

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Posted 06 February 2012 - 12:41 PM

My overarching goal is to use a combination of Ipads and Ipod Touches in every room for system control. It does not have to neccassarily be apple product, so combination of Android tablets and phones (with no data plans I guess) could work as well. Basically looking to use primary (tablet) and secondary (ipod sized) controllers in the home. I see options aplenty but they all seem to ignore the devices inherent capabilities, mic and cameras. The wife would like one switch and one interface for example in each bedroom. SHe doe snot want additional volume control pads, intercom pads, etc etc.

Is their any software or combination of software hardware that allows the following

Touchscreens (Ipad or similiar)
Touchscreen control of the various systems
Intercom (2 way video ideally?) between touchscreens / audiozones
Intercom (2 way audio, 1 way video) between 2 way cameras and touchscreen

The only DIY solution I seem to find is using Windows based tablets with HAI's Omnitouch pro's software package.

It just seems like a complete waste to be spending upwards of 700 per 5.7e just to get intercom out of the system or having to use a beefy windows tablet to run their software. And then you still need the automation studio package to customize anything. ANd of course I am not putting a tablet or 5.7e in each room.

I would be more than willing to jump ship from HAI, but Elk doesn't seem any better. HS and CQC do not have this either from what I can tell. I am looking for some combination that utilizes each interfaces microphone and possibly camera for intercom use. The only option I found was a Crestron install a company by the name of DES did on a 14000 sq ft house! I was hoping for something more DIY.

Any leads or links would be appreciated.

Edited by Bal, 06 February 2012 - 12:43 PM.


#2 InspiredTim

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 03:46 AM

Hai don't have an intercom function on their snaplink yet. I don't know of any VoIP video call app that works on apples either. I would use the iTouch in each room which will allow you to control audio, security, CCTV, access and the rest via snap link. Then hopefully either an video VoIP app will come out like Skype or Hai will release the intercom feature on snap link.

#3 Bal

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 09:58 AM

Correct that HAI does not have the intercom on snaplink, but they do have in their Omnitouch Pro. This software allows a windows based PC to act like a HAI touchscreen. hence i could place windows based tablets at each location and get what i was looking for although i am am not a huge fan of the HAI touchscreen interface as compared to say HS or CQC.

I really thinnk these security companies better take a look at RIM. Depending on hardware is not a long term option witout a strong software presence. Omnitouch was a simple endeavour as compared to an apple or android touchscreen port for HAI. They already had the basis for it in the Automation Studio.

Any suggestions? I had hoped I was missing an app or a combination that would work.

#4 pete_c

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 01:48 PM

Bal,

I see the same as you do.

Personally currently using a device which was sold with a flash based Linux OS a few years back. I am currently playing with the HS HSTouch world. The device will run ICS, Ubuntu and XP via a boot stick. The camera / intercom stuff would be easy to add.

#5 jbrennan

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 08:47 PM

If you set up each with its own email address you could use FaceTime as the chat protocol, along with iMessage for any text messaging.
FaceTime is also always on, whereas Skype times out and logs you out of the app after a day or so.

#6 Bal

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 09:28 AM

... The camera / intercom stuff would be easy to add.


Thats the part I am clueless on and do not see any options. How would you go about integrating that built in hardware into an HS Touch screen that allows intercom?

As Jbrennan mentioned, Facetime could work. The only issue with Facetime is the app is independant of your home control interface, hence you have to jump around the ipad/itouch apps. I was hoping for an integrated interface.

I got to tell you, its very annoying to see all the parts there, at reasonable pricing, yet no way to integrate them in a seemless solution. I have a similiar issue with Sonos. Only HS has a native interface, but HS doesnt have the IP based interface for HAI I would like. CQC does, but no interface for Sonos.

I think Elk or HAI, whomever invests in their software department will end up getting the market. From an installer point of view...its easy to sell a bunch of $400 ipads and $200 itouches to an end user compared $1000 security touchscreens. Espeacially if the installer has an integrated software solution provided by the security panel company. Trying to hold on to touchscreen profits is a joke. The security companies can not compete with the production power of the tablet companies to push down price. Man just wait to the new ipad comes out with the higger resolution! Talk about a kicking touchscreen.

Edited by Bal, 08 February 2012 - 09:35 AM.


#7 pete_c

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 09:40 AM

Thats the part I am clueless on and do not see any options. How would you go about integrating that builtin hardware into an HS Touch screen that allows intercom?


There is none today. I am playing with VLC (cuz its multiplatform) and "entertaining" maybe doing some XaP thing (similiar to Damage's XpL thing) running concurrently with the the HSTouch client or speaker application. I've been "testing" streaming live video (720 stuff and ZoneMinder (http://zoneminder.com) stuff) as its closer to 30 FPS than a quick refresh in HSTouch for video security. Still not like an analogue view (say in OmniTouch); so too looking at a USB video capture device to grab analogue video in a widow to see the difference in utilization (even with a Gb connection to the TS client). My carPC client integrates with a USB backup camera just fine and pops a window within the application showing the backup camera (very integrated). So maybe sometime in the future you could theoritically have a remote HSTouch client via a WAN link integrated with live video / sound; shouldn't be too difficult these days. My preference is to be less dependant on available on line stuff (like Facetime) with more self serving non internet service dependant clients. Most of the online services eventually look for some sort of monthly service fees after you get used to using them (IE: like a bank ATM machine's implementations in the 1980's).

#8 sic0048

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 02:06 PM

The intercom part of this is the hard thing. Everything else can be handled by a CQC or Homeseer type system. I might suggest doing an automation system and then adding a Asterisk or other phone system that can have intercom built into it. So the intercom would come through the phone, not the tablets. But the tablets would control everything else.

#9 Dean Roddey

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 03:26 PM

Intercom support is something that's been asked for by some customers, though to date it's never been something that was a make or break thing for most folks as compared to other features, so it's not something we've tackled yet. But I do recognize how nice it would be, and hopefully it's something I can start to investigate at the start of our next release cycle. That will be soon since the currently one is winding up, but still it probably won't be in a time frame that will be of use to you if you are needing to make decisions soon. I guess that, if you did go with the Omni software on Windows based hardware, then that could be an interrim solution that could be replaced later.

#10 pete_c

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 07:26 PM

Personally I am just amazed at what can be done today. I'm "old" though and in the 1970's this was all part of science fiction movies. I remember in the 1960's checking out the Bell labs (?) video telephone in the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago; amazing stuff back then.

Heck in the Tokyo subways today everyone chats and uses video conferencing on the way to work like its just a regular thing there.

Dean; I wouldn't mind beta testing in my "sandbox" here (even OK WAF most of the time).

Damage is moving a wav file to and from the Chumby's today to get the sound to traverse networklandia. (that is only an 800Mhz Arm CPU).

#11 drozwood90

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 04:53 PM

Pete,

Does ZoneMinder (http://zoneminder.com) output a video stream you are tapping into for VLC access?

--Dan

#12 Steve

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 11:26 PM

I wonder if this is something that can somehow be done in Haiku, I will ask the developer to look at this thread and comment. But based on some other things it could be Apple imposed limitations that would prevent this.

#13 pete_c

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 01:47 AM

Does ZoneMinder (http://zoneminder.com) output a video stream you are tapping into for VLC access?


No. So far just streaming archived ZM videos. I have yet not tried live streaming ZM video via VLC.

Tried it just now and it does work. Thank-you Dan. I didn't even think of trying it.

This will give me better full motion video on the HSTouch screens.

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#14 Bal

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 10:55 AM

Well I am not hardset on getting this right now. As I am well aware sometimes it takes a while for software, hardware, pricing and such to gel into a viable solution. Guess I was hoping I missed something though in my own searches!

Pete, it does look like your getting close to a working solution utilizing ZM and streaming directly through HS Touch. If there was a way to engage the forward camera on an ipad / ipod touch within ZM you could pull off the intercom system using ZM and some fancy programming in HS.

I honestly figured CQC or HS would eventually have something like this working. With HS your waiting for someone with the knowhow to get it going. With CQC your waiting on Dean's time! :)

As far as I know, tablet camera's and mikes are exposed as far as third party apps/programs. So it really is just a matter of someone tackling the nitch. I agree with Pete i do not like using a service which requires internet, just intranet. I know this can be done though as seen here:
http://stackoverflow...-from-an-iphone

Seems like they are streaming the video form the ios device to a server. Then the server just has to send that to the correct place...using http live streaming.

I so wish I were a programmer sometimes! :)

Edited by Bal, 10 February 2012 - 11:01 AM.


#15 pete_c

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 01:44 PM

Pete, it does look like your getting close to a working solution utilizing ZM and streaming directly through HS Touch. If there was a way to engage the forward camera on an ipad / ipod touch within ZM you could pull off the intercom system using ZM and some fancy programming in HS.


There is an iPad/iPod custom version of ZoneMinder (http://zoneminder.com) called eyeZM.

http://eyezm.com/

Much of the HS plugins developed are folks like you Bal which want to take advantage of hardware and do DIY's to get the software to talk to the server. Heck I don't even know how my "hodgepodge" of an Home Automation setup continues to work as I tend to keep adding more hardware / software / events wanting it to do more every day and never being satisfied; its like the getting there part is much more enjoyable the the using of the hardware and software.

I play games with it; like maybe creating an event which turns on X10, Insteon, Z-Wave and UPB all at once and just sit there and watch how fast each one responds to commands; for fun.

Many folks also do their stuff but would prefer not to publicize their custom "wares" just for the simple reason of support et al. A lot of it is "gratis" and with folks busy lives its usually done with very tight resources. Its different when you pay a software company for their efforts and support as that is their "bread and butter". Thats where it can start to get expensive. I went to a local HA retailer a couple of years back and he did use the "shock and awe" approach to home automation; stating it was great stuff at a price and giving his clients a peek and the "priviledge" of letting them see what can be done. I don't know though if that would work today or with a more informed public; or just a wise shopper.




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