Any way to control WebCoRE presence sensor with Alexa?


#1

I’m looking for a way to tell Alexa I’m home. My phone updates too slowly and I have several things happen when I arrive. However, those pistons don’t fire for several minutes after I get home. It would be nice to tell Alexa I’m home and she change my presence from away to present.

I guess I can just create another virtual switch and maybe a routine for Alexa and I can say I’m home, but it would be better if it were direct. Thanks a lot!


#2

I’m not sure. But dors the presence sensor offer force present to webCoRE? If so, you could create a virtual switch for Alexa to turn in and when that switch turns on have it force present im on mobile right now


#3

I often use multiple methods which all flip the same Simulated Switch.
(which represents whether I am home or not)

In other words:
When my presence sensor detects I am home, it turns on WCmoreHome switch…
When my GPS sees that I am home, it turns on WCmoreHome switch…
If I say, “Alexa, I am home”, it also turns on WCmoreHome switch…
If my phone can see my home WiFi, it turns on WCmoreHome switch…
If my piston detects my phone connected to my router, it turns on WCmoreHome switch…

Then, in webCoRE, I program a single piston that is monitoring the Simulated Switch.

IF WCmoreHome changes to on
    Then do welcome home stuff
END IF

IF WCmoreHome changes to off
    Then do goodbye stuff
END IF

The beauty of this redundancy is even if one lags behind (or fails for some reason), the others will still initiate the switch. (and the action takes place when the first event happens. The other events are ignored, since the SimSwitch is already on by then)


#4

@WCmore Can you share how doing the connect to WiFi. I have iOS devices and a netgear Tri band router?


#5

I have two posts here that describes the basic concept. It should work with any type of phone that has WiFi capabilities, although there may be some limitations on certain routers.


#6

Why would it have to be a WebCoRE presence sensor? There are virtual sensors that work like switches that allow you turn them on and off like a switch. This could be controlled by Alexa easily.


#7

@Gopack2, I guess you can’t force present. Only awake/asleep. I thought for sure you could. In that case I’ll have to go with what @WCmore and @Ryan780 have said, just make all my location based pistons watch a simulated switch that has several triggers. This will help my all around presence for everyone. Thanks everyone!


#8

One small addendum…

When I arrive home, I want a fast & snappy response… So the first event will trigger the Welcome Home piston…

but…

When one of the many choices determines that I am not home, it could be a short lasting hiccup. (since presence detectors are not perfect) To circumvent this, I usually require multiple ones to show me as not home before my SmartHome assumes that I have really left.

In other words, it only takes one event when I arrive, but 2 methods must show me absent before my Goodbye piston will run.

This prevents strange events when (for example) rebooting your phone or changing batteries in your sensor etc.


#9

I don’t understand this personally. Why would you want your goodbye routine to run well after you leave home? This is the one that I want to run right away to make sure that everything has happened.


#10

Good question. I use my voice for my good bye routine that I need to run immediately. I use the backup method above for solid results that runs about 5 minutes after I pull out of the driveway. (best of both worlds)

My immediate piston runs while I am still in the house, grabbing my keys etc. It tells me the weather for the next few hours, rain chance etc, turns on certain lights, and warns me if windows are open etc. The auto piston that runs a few minutes later turns off many of those lights, and sets my global variables and presence location once it is confirmed that I have really left the house. (since technically I have not left when I am talking to Alexa)

Having two controls (one manual, and one automatic) seems like the best choice for me.


In addition, a presence sensor should still show you are “at home” as you pull out the driveway, so how can you “make sure that everything has happened” without checking the logs later?

To circumvent this, I have my automatic piston send me a confirmation after all the commands have been run. This gives me peace of mind when I am out that the piston ran thru to completion.


#11

That makes a lot more sense…but I still don’t see why you need the backup method. My goobye routine is a button by the door to the garage and that is how I open the garage door to drive out. So, there’s no real chance of me “forgetting about it”. Everyone’s use case is different. I found all presence to be so unreliable that it never did anything. I ended up always doing it manually anyway, so i just took presence out of the picture.


#12

Yes I agree. I have not found a single presence sensor that is 100% reliable. That was why I came up with this workaround to incorporate a few methods to detect my presence. So far, I have never had two methods simultaneously return a false alarm.

I realize it is unconventional, but with my funky workaround, I believe I have achieved 100% reliability. (as long as my internet is working, of course)