New Arduino Forum Area – PRESENT

I recently started messing around with the Arduino Nano to use as a remote data and control device connected back to a Raspberry Pi. I started up a new Arduino section in the forum to document how I am setting things up. It can be found here. I’ll be adding appropriate threads for the Raspberry Pi also but once I get further, I’ll create a blog post on the project.

PRESENT:
If you were looking for a present you’ve come to the right place. Perhaps you’ll find what you’re looking for within the Excel file.

http://tinkerlabz.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/present.xlsm

 

Raspberry Pi – Home Intelligent Management System – Electric Water Heater Local GUI

It’s working! My Raspberry Pi Tkinter app now allows me to view and change the status of my water heater locally connected to the Raspberry Pi. It also updates the HIMS mysql database so that I can also view and change the settings on the HIMS. I’ll run through some additional testing then post code eventually.

Here’s a screenshot of the status page. It essentially shows if the unit is on or off and what the temperature is:
wh_gui
Here’s a screenshot of the settings page. It allows me to set up to 4 off sequences along with enabling data logging. Sequence 4 doesn’t work at this time but I set it up for 4 sequences.

wh_gui_settings

 

Raspberry Pi – Electric Water Heater Controls Update

I’ve made progress updating the python code for my electric water heater control project. With a few more hours of time, I should be ready to start testing the updated program out in more detail. Once it’s complete. I’ll post the code and some updated screenshots. I anticipate it to be much more reliable and efficient that my first take on the code assuming the SD card doesn’t get corrupted. At least with my tweaks even with a corrupted SD card I should still have hot water!

Water Heater Updates

Well, after taking a break, I’ve started working more on my water heater setup and the HIMS. I’ve decided to make a local python tkinter GUI and some other changes. I’m currently getting things going but will post as I make progress. I figure the local GUI running on the Pi is a good fallback in the event the HIMS server dies as it did in the past.

LAMP server rebuild

Well, apparently my SD card in my raspberry pi LAMP server got corrupted. The backups I’ve been making of the entire card do not appear to be working correctly so I’ve been working on rebuilding it. Once I have things going again I’m going to focus on making a mirror image on another SD card to verify I can correctly make backups. Definitely frustrating. This has set me back a ways on my thermostat project as I get the server going again.

WordPress bbpress full width no sidebar

So I spent some time today trying to figure out how to set bbpress forum to have no side bar and full page width. After some looking I finally got it working with the theme Twenty Twelve doing the following:

1.  Copy wp-content/themes/twentytwelve/page-templates/full-width.php to wp-content/themes/twentytwelve/bbpress.php
2. Edit wp-content/themes/twentytwelve/bbpress.php to add style 100% like this:` div id=”primary” class=”site-content” style=”width:100%” `

 

I found this solution here:
http://bbpress.org/forums/topic/full-width-forum-4/
Thanks to serpini for posting it.

Adafruit 2.8″ Capacitive Touch Screen

I received my Adafruit 2.8″ capacitive touch screen a little while ago and have been messing around with it. I followed the Adafruit guide found here and was able to get it working. I also find some instructions here to get the Pi to boot directly to the screen. The instructions essentially boil down to the following:

Install xserver-xorg-video-fbdev (My Raspbian image already had it installed)
sudo apt-get install xserver-xorg-video-fbdev

Create a config file with following contents in /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/99-fbdev.conf containing the following:
Section "Device"
Identifier "myfb"
Driver "fbdev"
Option "fbdev" "/dev/fb1"
EndSection

After doing the above, my Pi boots to the piTFT screen. I then went about and set TightVNCserver to autostart.

My next steps include getting my basic Python TKinter app to load on boot and fill the screen. Once I have the screen functioning the way I want it for the Thermostat project, I’ll verify powering from the 24V AC line still works OK.

TQ2SA-L2-5V Relays

I verified the relays I purchased work as “expected”. I hadn’t realized I ordered latching relays but I did. No big deal, they’ll work but non latching would have been simpler as I will now need to utilize 2 GPIO ports per relay. I also did a little more research into wiring of my particular AC unit and believe I’m getting a better grasp on how it operates. More to come on this as I continue testing. On a side note, Adafruit got the touch screen in stock I wanted so I ordered that along with a but buttons and a case that may work for what I want with a few tweaks.

HIMS Thermostat Relays

Didn’t get too much done tonight but I soldered some leads off of one of the surface mount relays I purchased from Jameco. Hopefully I’ll be able to do some minimal testing with it in the next few days to verify it works as I think it should.