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Our kitchen at work gets really hot when the sun sets, so I want the RF Somfy controlled blinds to automatically go down at some pre-programmed time (ideally I could automate this by date and season since the sunset and sunrise will change all year).

I found an INSTEON adaptor which will talk RF to the blinds, but I don't know anything about INSTEON or how it works. My best bet seems to buy the INSTEON desktop software but there are 3 different kinds, so not sure which one to get.

I have a computer in my office I could install the software on, but how would it talk to the INSTEON adaptor in the kitchen? (Our offices are on a separate electrical circuit from the kitchen - not sure if that's how INSTEON works)

share|improve this question
I wonder if superuser.com might have more input on the desktop software part of your question. – BMitch Jul 6 '11 at 11:31
@B_Mitch I just don't get how the INSTEON stuff works. Is it talking over the voltage? The website makes it seem like there's a wireless mesh network going on. – Michael Pryor Jul 6 '11 at 15:07
I don't have any experience with INSTEON, but it sounds like it may be using something similar to X10: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X10_%28industry_standard%29 – BMitch Jul 6 '11 at 15:48
@Michael Pryor - Its all standalone and needs extra bits to control it via TTL plugs or trigger plugs I suppose. Like i showed you need to buy extra stuff. If you really want to control via computer you need the wireless transmitter and reciever. – ppumkin Jul 8 '11 at 11:21
up vote 2 down vote accepted

You need a way to send Infrared signals to the Adapter. So you will also need to buy a remote for another 50USD.

So to use it from another computer somewhere else in the office you first need to get this

USB Wireless adapter for your PC

Then you need to get an access point to bridge the wireless to a electric

This AP - i am not sure but you might need something more- read more here

But i think this temperature controller will be better- as you dont have to program any thing just set some temps and viola- but again- you might need to buy something extra to connect to your blinds.. read more

share|improve this answer
+1 for temp control idea instead of a schedule. In the same vein, perhaps responding to light conditions would be a good route too. – matt wilkie Apr 15 '12 at 21:25

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