If you’re working from home like I am, you probably realize that it comes with a few distractions and challenges. In this video, I will show you smart office ideas to make working from home more comfortable. Everything in this video uses affordable smart home tech and is fairly simple to set up.
Here are the links to everything and set up instructions.
Light strips: https://amzn.to/2Pzq5GJ
Echo Dot: https://amzn.to/2Utkt2B
Wyze Sense: https://amzn.to/2JbTsv7
SmartThings button: https://amzn.to/2WHrSOl
Wyze Cam Pan: https://amzn.to/2QLNzsT
HOW TO SET UP:
1: Red Light Means Stop!
I’m using really inexpensive Sylvania light strips that use Zigbee. I’m using these specifically because my automations run on SmartThings and they integrate well together.
You could use any light strips and I just did a video comparing light strips: https://youtu.be/fZ1pgsbHGhI
You don’t have to use a button. You could use your phone, Alexa/Google Assistant to change the color and get the same results to let your family know you are busy.
2: Alexa Lectures Intruders
The way I’m doing this is if the light on the door is red, then a certain Virtual Switch is on in SmartThings. If the door is open when the Virtual Switch is also on then make Alexa talk.
You can use something like Echo Speaks to play a message on the Echo device.
Another way is triggering a SmartThings Virtual Switch, but when setting up this Virtual Switch in the browser change the “Type” to “Simulated Alexa Switch.” That will allow the Virtual Switch to trigger an Alexa Routine. There’s a lot of really cool things you can do with that. For more info on SmartThings virtual switches, watch this: https://youtu.be/Ys5vQdr_1WA
3: Visual Visitor Alert
This one works similar to #2 but instead I just blink the lights. There are a few ways you can blink the lights, but the easiest way for me is to use webCoRE in SmartThings. Since I’m using LIFX smart bulbs in the office there is an option to “breathe” the LIFX lights in webCoRE. This just flashes the lights a color and the lights go back to the state they were in before. It’s really convenient. More info here: https://smarthomesolver.com/reviews/smart-home-automation-ideas/#9_Light_Flashing_Alert
4: Getting Dressed Reminder
In SmartThings, have a Virtual Switch that gets turned off every night. Have the motion sensor or contact sensor turn on the Virtual Switch. If the Virtual Switch is still off by a certain time, have Alexa speak as explained in #2 on this list (Alexa Lectures Intruders).
5: Check on Family Quickly
In the video, I show the Wyze Cam Pan (link: https://amzn.to/2QLNzsT) and it’s a really inexpensive camera that can pan and tilt. I have the camera on this outlet mount: https://amzn.to/3ds5zCh and that one works with the Wyze Cam Pan or Wyze Cam.
I connected the Wyze skill in Alexa and say “show kitchen camera” if the Wyze Cam Pan was called “kitchen camera.” The same goes for showing it on the Google Home Hub.
6: Take a Break Alerts
For the open window alert, if you are using SmartThings there is a SmartApp called “Smart Windows.” It’s pretty easy to set up and get a push notification.
You could also use webCoRE which is slightly more advanced, but you can do both push notifications and have Alexa speak if you do it that way.
7: Creative Kid Distractions
In the Google Home app you can set up routines to have multiple voice commands give the same custom response.
For the voice command to turn on the kids show, I’m using the Harmony Hub. I did a whole video about some of those automations and how to set up: https://youtu.be/70HGHAJJxv0
The button is an Echo button which I don’t think they sell anymore but any button or voice command will work. It just starts an Alexa Routine and for the action, just scroll down to Sounds. Click on that and there’s an Animal option that you can select from a few different animal noises.
8: Motion Sensor Stops Laziness
You can set this up using SmartThings or an Alexa Routine. Just select no motion for a certain amount of time. You can have it only run during work hours as well.
If you have any questions, just ask them down in the comments.
All of my Smart Home Ideas videos: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLERasyubmasUpOmzeOJNTkLxdGFVkWuID
Alexa Routine Ideas: https://smarthomesolver.com/reviews/alexa-routine-ideas/
Best Smart Light Strips: https://youtu.be/fZ1pgsbHGhI
My Smart Office Setup: https://youtu.be/QM8_hBYBY4I
Song titled The Author Never Dies by Nihilore
Song titled The End by EVA
Disclaimer: Smart Home Solver’s opinions are 100% our own and not influenced. We have never been paid for any reviews.