2016-07 Home Automation with Java and OpenHAB

Main talk starts at: 16:58

Jeff Findlay presents his experiences setting up a home automation system using Java technologies.


4 Open House Automation Alternative Tools for Open Home Automation Bus

The Internet of Things isn’t just a buzzword, it’s really a quickly growing fact.

With an ever-rising quantity of devices available to make it easier to automate, protect, and monitor your property, it has no time before been easier nor more tempting to have a go at home automation. Whether you are hoping to handle your HVAC(Heating Ventilating Air Conditioning) system from another location, incorporate a home cinema, defend your home from robbery, fire, or another risks, decrease your energy intake, or maybe control a few lights, there are lots of devices available at your disposal.

While connected devices oftentimes contain proprietary components, a good step one in bringing open source into your home automation system is to ensure that the device which ties your devices together-and provides you with an interface to them (the “hub”)-is open source. The great thing is, there are lots of options readily available, with alternatives to run on everything from your always-on personal computer to a Raspberry Pi.

Have a look at a few of our preferred.


OpenHAB (short for Open Home Automation Bus) is on the list of most common home automation tools among open source enthusiasts, with a large user community and a good number of supported devices and integrations. Written in Java, openHAB is easily portable across the majority of major platforms and also runs nicely on the Raspberry Pi. Supporting many devices, openHAB is designed to be device-agnostic while making it simpler for developers to include their own devices or plugins to the system. OpenHAB also ships iOS and Android applications for device control, in addition to a design tools to help you to establish your own User interface for your smart home system.

You can easily find openHAB’s source on GitHub licensed under the Eclipse Public License. https://github.com/openhab/openhab


Calaos is designed as a full-stack home automation system, including a server application, touchscreen interface, web application, native mobile applications for iOS and Android, and a preconfigured Linux operating platform to run underneath. English speaking readers should be advised that, while some English documentation is out there, a few of the instructional material together with support forums are mainly in French.

Calaos is licensed under version 3 of the GPL and you can view its source on GitHub. https://github.com/calaos


Domoticz is a home automation system with a quite wide selection of supported devices, starting from weather stations to smoke sensors to remote controls, with a great number of added third party integrations documented on the project’s webpage. It is designed with an HTML5 frontend, which makes it available from both PC web browsers and most contemporary cell phones, and is light in weight, running on various low power products including the Raspberry Pi.

Domoticz is written largely in C/C++ under the GPLv3, and its source code can certainly be browsed on GitHub. https://github.com/domoticz/domoticz

Home Assistant

Home Assistant is an open source home automation platform, and is designed to be effortlessly deployed on almost any machine which could run Python 3, from a Raspberry Pi to a NAS device, and in addition comes with a Docker container to make implementing on other systems a piece of cake. It incorporates with a variety of open source as well as commercial products, letting you link, to illustrate, IFTTT, weather information, or your Amazon Echo device, to manages from locks to lights to even a command line notifier.

Home Assistant is released under an MIT license, and its source readily available for download from GitHub. https://github.com/balloob/home-assistant


OpenMotics is a smart home automation system with both software and hardware under open source licenses, designed at providing an extensive system for handling devices instead of stitching together a lot of devices from diverse providers. Dissimilar to a lot of the other systems designed largely for easy retrofitting, OpenMotics is focused on a hard wired solution. To acquire more information, see our full article from OpenMotics backend developer Frederick Ryckbosch.

The source for OpenMotics is licensed under the GPLv2 and is accessible for download on GitHub. https://github.com/openmotics

These are not the only choices available, naturally. A good number of home automation buffs opt for a diverse solution, or maybe even prefer to roll their own. Many other potential choices to look into include things like LinuxMCE, PiDome, MisterHouse or smarthomatic. Other users go for unique smart home devices without including them into a single comprehensive system.

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