Software Development

Utilizing House Assistant to combine a Unifi Shield G4 Doorbell and Amazon Alexa to announce guests

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I’m not a House Assistant knowledgeable, but it surely’s clearly an enormous and highly effective ecosystem. I’ve interviewed the creator of House Assistant on my podcast and I encourage you to take a look at that chat.

House Assistant can rapidly grow to be a interest that overwhelms you. Each object (entity) in your home that’s even remotely linked can grow to be programmable. The whole lot. Even folks! You may declare that any title:worth pair that (for instance) your cellphone can expose will be consumable by House Assistant. Questions like “is Scott house” or “what’s Scott’s cellphone battery” will be related to Scott the Entity within the House Assistant Dashboard.

I used to be amazed on the units/objects that House Assistant found that it might automate. Lights, remotes, Spotify, and extra. You may discover that any internally linked system you will have possible has an Integration accessible.

Temperature, Mild Standing, positive, that is simple House Automation. However integrations and third social gathering code may give you particulars like “Is the Residing Room darkish” or “is there movement within the driveway.” From these constructing blocks, you possibly can then construct your personal IFTTT (If This Then That) automations, combining not simply two methods, however any and all disparate methods.

What’s the most effective half? This all runs LOCALLY. Not in a cloud or the cloud or anybody’s cloud. I’ve obtained my stuff operating on a Raspberry Pi 4. Even higher I put a Energy Over Ethernet (PoE) hat on my Rpi so I’ve only one community wire into my hub that powers the Pi.

I consider organising House Assistant on a Pi is the most effective and best approach to get began. That stated, it’s also possible to run in a Docker Container, on a Synology or different NAS, or simply on Home windows or Mac within the background. It is as much as you. Optionally, you possibly can pay Nabu Casa $5 for distant (outdoors your home) community entry through clear forwarding. However to be clear, all of it nonetheless runs inside your home and never within the cloud.

Basic Home Assistant Setup

OK, to the primary level. I used to have an Amazon Ring Doorbell that might combine with Amazon Alexa and if you pressed the doorbell it might say “Somebody is on the entrance door” on our all Alexas. It was a stunning little integration that labored properly in our lives.

Front Door UniFi G4 Doorbell

Nonetheless, I swapped out the Ring for a Unifi Shield G4 Doorbell for plenty of causes. I do not need to pump video to outdoors companies, so this doorbell integrates properly with my present Unifi set up and data video to a neighborhood onerous drive. Nonetheless, I lose any Alexa integration and this good little “somebody is on the door” announcement. So this looks like an ideal job for House Assistant.

This is the overall todo checklist:

  • Set up House Assistant
  • Set up House Assistant Neighborhood Retailer
    • This permits third social gathering “untrusted” integrations instantly from GitHub. You may want a GitHub account and it will clone customized integrations instantly into your native HA.
    • I additionally advocate the Terminal & SSH (9.2.2), File editor (5.3.3) add ons so you possibly can see what’s occurring.
  • Get the UniFi Shield third social gathering integration for House Assistant
    • NOTE: Unifi Shield help is being promoted in House Assistant v2022.2 so you will not want this step quickly because it’ll be included.
    • “The UniFi Shield Integration provides help for retrieving Digital camera feeds and Sensor knowledge from a UniFi Shield set up on both an Ubiquiti CloudKey+, Ubiquiti UniFi Dream Machine Professional or UniFi Shield Community Video Recorder.”
    • Authenticate and configure this integration.
  • Get the Alexa Media Participant integration
    • This makes all of your Alexas present up in House Assistant as “media gamers” and likewise lets you tts (textual content to speech) to them.
    • Authenticate and configure this integration.

I like to recommend going into your Alexa app and making a Multi-room Speaker Group referred to as “in every single place.” Not solely as a result of it is good to have the ability to say “play the music in every single place” however it’s also possible to goal that “All over the place” group in House Assistant.

Go into your House Assistant UI at http://homeassistant.native:8123/ and into Developer Instruments. Underneath Companies, strive pasting on this YAML and clicking “name service.”

service: notify.alexa_media_everywhere
knowledge:
  message: Somebody is on the entrance door, this can be a take a look at
  knowledge:
    sort: announce
    technique: communicate

If that works, you realize you possibly can automate Alexa and make it say issues. Now, go to Configuration, Automation, and Add a brand new Automation. This is mine. I used the UI to create it. Notice that your Entity names could also be totally different if you happen to give your entrance doorbell digital camera a special title.

Binary_sensor.front_door_doorbell

Discover the format of Information, it is title worth pairs inside a single discipline’s worth.

Alexa Action

…but it surely additionally exists in a file referred to as Automations.yaml. Notice that the “to: ‘on'” set off is required otherwise you’ll get double bulletins, one for every state change within the doorbell.

- id: '1640995128073'
  alias: G4 Doorbell Announcement with Alexa
  description: G4 Doorbell Announcement with Alexa
  set off:
  - platform: state
    entity_id: binary_sensor.front_door_doorbell
    to: 'on'
  situation: []
  motion:
  - service: notify.alexa_media_everywhere
    knowledge:
      knowledge:
        sort: announce
        technique: communicate
      message: Somebody is on the entrance door
  mode: single

It really works! There is a ton of cool stuff I can automate now!


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About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, advisor, father, diabetic, and Microsoft worker. He’s a failed stand-up comedian, a cornrower, and a guide writer.

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