Tuesday, November 10, 2015

A push-button remote-control (literally)

Here's an oddly interesting device - that I'm surprised no one has come up with before now... It's basically an internet controlled push-button called Microbot Push (It's got about a month to go on Indiegogo.) It can be used to transform ordinary appliances into Internet of Things devices. 

Whatever you do, don't connect two of these together
back-to-back: you could tear the space-time continuum...
If you want to automate the action of something that only uses buttons, this is the tool for that. For example, in order to start a cheap Keurig coffee maker in the morning, you have to push a button to turn it on, then push another button to begin the "brewing" process. A couple of these button pushers would do the trick. Or, you could automate your garage door opener without doing any re-wiring. 

[Of course this is a solution to a first world problem - when I was young we had to walk across 9 feet of shag carpet to even change the channel on our TV...]

Over time, as more and more internet controlled devices become available, the market for this device should diminish. It remains to be seen if they can actually sell them at $200 for a "starter kit" with three button-pushers. 

If you need to do the same thing with a wall switch, you could either replace the switch with a WeMo switch or use the Switchmate switch cover – both under $40.

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