Web enable a coffee maker using a WebBrick


Staff member
I never heard of this company before, but it looks like they have a rather interesting product. They posted a how-to on how to use their WebBrick component to internet enable a coffee machine.

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Has anyone ever played with this product before?
You'd think that a web enabled coffee machine would at least support Java...

The web brick looks like a general purpose web enabled device with addressable i/o pins. Much like the ethernet module for the M1 except that it has more then just serial output. But its quite expensive too.
It does look pretty expensive, but I guess there is no cheaper alternative available?
There are a number of other boards like this out there. Too many to count, probably. And the prices are all over the place.

I have used boards by drftech and edtp. The ones I have use AVR processors and can be reprogrammed (they can use the same code which is available as source). In fact, the drftech board is used as part of my a/v switch and provides an http (but not web) interface to it.

www.drftech.com But it looks like their site is down. I believe they have stopped selling their board, or only sell one version.

The DRF boards has 4 optoisolated inputs and 4 relay outputs. It could easily control the coffee pot.

EDTP offers many boards with different procesors. I've used this one. It runs $64 as a kit, $84 assembled. You would need to add a little additional circuitry to control the pot, but it's pretty much the same as described in the original link.

In fact, for those of you wanting to do this with HomeSeer, my script for interfacing with the DRF board in available on the HomeSeer boards in this thread:

Ethernet i/o board

And then there are always products like the stuff from Lantronix and siteplayer. Many, many options out there. Adding a web interface to any hardware these days is almost off-the-shelf.

{edit follows}

An update:

The drftech web site is back. It looks like they are currently selling the board with the surface mount components preinstalled (the tough ones to work with) and the ethernet jack (which contains the "magnetics" and is not just a jack) for $45. The rest of the components need to be purchased separately but are all through-hole and easy to solder if you have some experience. This is actually how I bought my boards in the past.

With either the drftech or edtp boards, you would also need software and hardware to program the chips.
I know the coffee maker is just a sample but if I have to walk over to put the cup under it or to get it then why wouldn't I just push the button?
Make it a wireless network connection, and put a set of wheels on the coffee maker, then it'll come to you.
huggy59 said:
Make it a wireless network connection, and put a set of wheels on the coffee maker, then it'll come to you.
I'm not sure I'd bother with moving the whole maker. You'd have to worry about batteries, etc. Why not just move the carafe? The coffee brews then the pot comes to find you. You could even have a fleet of automated mugs that line up at the maker, fill up, and then find their owners.
Or you could pump it around the house. Did you see the Letterman show where they pumped hot coffee from the shop across the street to Dave's desk? Funny!!!
Yes I have.

The heart of the Web Brick system may surprise you.
At the web brick web site note on the lower left is the below notation:
Technical stuff -
andy (at) o2m8 . com

Andy is "andythirtover" on the yahoo forum for SitePlayer


He and several of his Web Brick company associates frequent the forum and help with newbie questions about developing code on the SitePlayer device. The SitePlayer developer kit is $99 and the individual SitePlayer devices are $29.95. The Web Brick is some connectivity hardware plus a SitePlayer/PIC combo and a lot of development sweat. Keep in mind that the SitePlayer just about requires an external processor to do much real productive work (PIC is a favorite choice as they cost under $5 and are supported by a large community of tinkerers).