Hello from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada!


New Member
Hello World!

I have just received the keys to our newly built home and I am looking for some advice on the best base product for my requirements.

I would like to build a system (PC or Mac based) to control the following.
Security (monitored alarm, motion, glass break, door locks, biometrics, garage door)
Surveillance (video, recording, remote view, interior, exterior)
Telephony (on screen display, record messages, fax functionality)
Yard things (sensors for automatic sprinklers, pool, hot tub, lighting, heated driveway)
Proximity (lighting when car enters driveway, maybe based on iPhone device GPS or wifi connection, phone is near a door it unlocks, phone is near garage it opens, etc...)
Automation (lighting, thermostats, drapes, etc...)

I have built a server room to run all the cabling I need to every room to handle my next "wish".
I want to be able to, with an iOS device (iPhone/iPad), control all the audio and video in the house.
With the iOS device i would like to be able to select the signal and the TV i want it displayed on like an HDMI switch. The same goes for audio etc...

Example: I could setup one XBOX to work on any tv with the click of an iOS device. Change where the signal is being sent, change the paring of TV from Living room to bedroom. select a DVD that has been copied onto a server, etc...

I plan to add one thing at a time until i have my "dream solution", but i want to start with the correct foundations. I have programing skills so i have no issue working with code to develop some custom interfaces.

I am a noob when it comes to automation, but i am experienced when it comes to technology and programing.

Any pointers in the right direction would be greatly appreciated! (My Fiancé really wants me to get a basic system up and running ASAP)


Welcome to CocoonTech.com.
I would start out by getting a true security system up and running, something like the Elk M1 Gold or HAI's system.  These systems can (and should with security) run independent of a PC.  They are also great for expanding into other automation needs later.
How much budget are you allowing yourself for all of those projects?  All is doable, but can be done in different ways.