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With SAMI, the Connected Home Is Now a Reality


Picture the following scenario: You unlock the front door with the push of a button on your smartphone. Beyond it is another dimension—a dimension of data-driven applications and services. You’re moving into a realm of interoperability, where silos that previously separated devices by protocol, brand or function are shattered into millions of pieces. You’ve just crossed over into… the IoT-connected home.*

Now, take a look at the video below. You might think you are seeing a set from some futuristic TV show, but all of the footage you will see was shot in a real home that exists today. Inside this home you will find a broad range of IoT devices that are all connected and controlled by SAMI.

Whether controlling the lock to the front door of the house, the thermostat, security cameras, a smart scale, a robotic vacuum (Samsung VR 9000), the shades in the bedroom, or even the living room fireplace and lighting (such as Philips Hue lights), the residents of this home experience modern conveniences that are also easy to customize and implement.

You could even use a person’s voice as the control interface to SAMI to interact with different devices. As the video demonstrates, we turned on the fireplace in the living room using an experimental integration we built with a voice recognition system. This is one basic example of how a SAMI Rule could make the connected devices in the home come alive.

SAMI Rules make interoperability between devices—regardless of protocol, brand or function—extremely easy to set up. You use basic IF/THEN commands to generate specific Rules for things you want to do with your SAMI-connected devices.

SAMI fireplace

For example, the fireplace shown in the video can be turned on using an “X10 powerline switch” with a simple Rule such as the one written below.

SAMI fireplace ON

SAMI brokers data between devices using what we call a Manifest that developers write for their devices. The below Manifest for the x10Fireplace device type in SAMI defines the Actions that allow the fireplace to understand the setOn state change triggered by the Rule.

{
  "data": {
    "version": 3,
    "properties": {
      "fields": {
        "command": {
          "type": "String",
          "unit": "",
          "isCollection": false,
          "description": "command",
          "metadata": {},
          "tags": null
        }
      },
      "actions": {
        "setOff": {
          "description": "Set state to Off",
          "parameters": {}
        },
        "setOn": {
          "description": "Set state to On",
          "parameters": {}
        },
        "setState": {
          "description": "Set state",
          "parameters": {
            "state": {
              "type": "String",
              "unit": "",
              "isCollection": false,
              "description": "state",
              "metadata": {}
            }
          }
        }
      }
    }
  }
}

And this is just one example. There is no limit to the number of devices that can be connected via SAMI and the Rules you establish.

As a user, you can use SAMI Rules to quickly and easily connect devices and services directly with one another. As a developer, you make this possible by defining the Actions that your device supports.

To define your own Rules—and maybe even include voice recognition—we suggest that you integrate with some of the great services out there. Depending on your environment, there are a number of options available to you including Google and Microsoft. One that we encourage you to look at is api.ai. Additionally, assistant.ai (by the same company) can help you to easily create an assistant that interacts using natural language.

We can only imagine what you might be able to do with SAMI Rules in your own connected home… such as coffee makers tied to alarm clocks; washing machines connected to soap dispensers; orders for groceries linked to the contents of the fridge; or motion sensors to keep track of the family cat (this one isn’t SAMI-powered, but there is no reason that it couldn’t be!)

Not that long ago, these ideas would have been written off as science fiction (Back to the Future Part II made some pretty bold predictions about this year!), but all of it is now possible. With a few quick clicks, the futuristic promise of IoT is just a Rule away.

Learn more about how to use SAMI Rules and write Manifests, or visit the SAMI User Portal to get started making your own Rules. Then, be sure to let us know via Twitter about how you’ve rewritten the rulebook on what devices can do.

*With an ode of thanks to Mr. Rod Serling and The Twilight Zone.

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