When you want to play around with a new technology, do you jump straight to production machinery? Nope. Nothing beats a simplified model as proof of concept. And the only thing better than a good proof of concept is an amusing proof of concept. In that spirit [Eric Tsai], alias [electronichamsters], built the worldâ€™s most complicated electronic gingerbread house this Christmas, because a home-automated gingerbread house is still simpler than a home-automated home.
Yeah, there are blinky lights and itâ€™s all controlled by his smartphone. Thatâ€™s just the basics. The crux of the demo, however, is the Bluetooth-to-MQTT gateway that he built along the way. A Raspberry Pi with a BTLE radio receives local data from BTLE sensors and pushes them off to an MQTT server, where they can in principle be read from anywhere in the world. If youâ€™ve tried to network battery-powered ESP8266 nodes, you know that battery life is the Achilles heel. Swapping over to BTLE for the radio layer makes a lot of sense.
If youâ€™re thinking that youâ€™ve seen this before, maybe youâ€™re thinking of [electronichamsters]â€™s previous feat of home-automation and cardboard, which is also great fun. If a web search with the keywords â€œIoTâ€ and â€œhamstersâ€ is what brought you here: Hackaday aims to please.