Had a couple of days of pure fun. I have been having a new kitchen fitted and one of the requirements from my wife was a touchscreen PC for recipies and streaming radio built in to the cabinets.
This was duly done with a nice little Asus touch screen running Windows 7.
The PC fits in a frame that hangs nicely in the 600 mm wide cabinet that is really designed to take a built in fridge and behind it there is a lot of unused space. I fitted an electrical socket in there to power the PC and the under-cabinet lighting (All LEDs) and wondered if the PC could be used in some home automation applications too.
I had an Arduino board hanging about and a relay adapter which I have assembled into a big PVC junction box. There are three mains sockets on the side and the arduino can switch mains power to each socket in response to a message sent to the USB port.
I have written a little program on the PC that sends commands to the arduino to turn the sockets on and off so now the lighting in the kitchen is all driven by the touchscreen.
The family are now realising the potential of this and have asked for an alarm clock that will start the coffee machine at 6:50 so that coffee is ready by 7:00 AM.
Wake up and smell the arduino...