For automating the smart home I use IFTTT a lot. IFTTT stands for “If This then that “and is web site where you can create applets that link triggers to actions. For example you could have your Philips Hue turn on when a light sensor determines it’s getting dark or when you get near home it turns on your heating. It works by you linking services like Philips Hue to your IFTTT account and then creating IF triggers and actions.
What if you want to trigger events from Windows? Well this is where my new free app comes in. It’s a simple panel of buttons they you can link to your IFTTT account. You can then create applets that are triggered by the button. So you want your lights on? Just hit the button, or you want to send a pre-set text message just hit the button. The buttons can trigger any action that is available in IFTTT.
As Smart Buttons is a UWP app it works in Windows 10, Windows 10 Mobile, Hololens and Windows Mixed Reality. I placed a the smart buttons app on a wall in my Mixed Reality Cliff House and that way I can control my home without having to leave Windows Mixed Reality.
So to get started:
- The first step is to go to IFTTT and get a maker key https://maker.ifttt.com
- Next download the Smart Button app for free from the Microsoft Store.
- Enter your IFTTT key into the Smart Button app by click on the settings button and then click Save.
- Now create your applets in IFTTT.
- For the IF part of your new applet search for Webhook and select the “Receive a web request” event.
- The event name needs to match the name of the smart button e.g. WallButton1
- In the THAT section search for and select the service you want to trigger. It could be Philips Hue, Twitter or any service IFTTT supports.
- Once you click Create Action the button will be live.
- Click on the button in the Smart Button app and the event will be triggered
More details in our forum.
Here is the app in action in Windows Mixed Reality
Ian Dixon is a Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional), founder of TheDigitalLifestyle.com tech site and producer of the weekly The Digital Lifestyle Show podcast. Ian has been writing and talking about Windows for over 10 years and has over 20 years in IT as an IT Manager. Ian has thousands of followers on Twitter and Facebook and over 4 million views on his YouTube channel.