Re: X10 Home Control

On Mon, Jul 24, 2000 at 01:34:53PM -0500, Charles J Knight wrote:
> I just got finished searching for X10 control software for LINUX, and
> found some
> interesting stuff.  Take a look at some of these URLs.
> This URL is a controller program which requires a bidirectional
> controller.  It
> mentions such things as a dry-contact sensor, and 256 interactive
> devices.
> Infrared control of your UNIX machine.  A lot of cheap machines come with
> IR ports, especially Packard Bell (I have several of their interfaces
> lying
> around...I may have to try them) and of course anything that's equipped
> with IRDA.
> Maybe this will get us started on those control systems...
>      -- Chuck Knight

	One great site I found was here:
	This guy has scores, if not hundreds of links. (Actually, I just
had Lynx count, and it found 205 links on his page! Last update was

	I've been using the X-10 "Firecracker" controller, which is a
one-way controller. (i.e. - I can issue commands from my computer, but not
verify that they were received, or poll the status of devices around the
house. This has not been a problem during the year I've been using them,
and I run things all the time around the house. 
	I've been using the 'bottle rocket' software for Linux, which is on
the 'ncherry' page, above. (Search for 'bottle rocket')
	You can get your own Firecracker starter kit from for
$5.90. This is touted as a "limited time only" sale that has been going on
for more than a year. :-) 
	WARNING! They'll add you to their email SPAM-list when you sign up,
so you might want to give them an address you're not too fond of, or one
from Yahoo! or some such place that you've created just for this purpose.
:-) They're pretty good about signing you off when you ask, but it is kind
of fun to see them send you something EVERY SINGLE DAY telling you about
their "great deals" on little X-10 spy cameras & such. 
	Eh... It's fun for a couple of days. Then it gets tedious. :-)

	The firecracker offer is at:
	If that link expires for some reason, try just going to and clicking on the "Free Gift for First Time Guests"

	The gift itself is cool, and works well. I've actually bought my
extra controllers at Radio Shack, though, since they're the same price as
at X10, and I don't have to pay shipping. :-) (I think they're actually
manufactured by X10, too, so they're fully interoperable.)
	Anyway, in browsing through X10's site, you'll see that they seem
to focus about 95% of their marketing on trying to sell you little color
and night-vision spy cameras, so you can sneak a peek at other people.
Doesn't seem like that care as much about home automation anymore... 

	   ___________________Think For Yourself____________________
	 Patrick G. Salsbury -
      Fuel Cells: Electricity for home, car, or business. 0% emmissions,
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     We are not humans having spiritual experiences, rather we are spirits
	   - enjoying human experiences. -- Original Speaker Unknown

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