Since getting my epic weapons replica Frostmourne, a sword from a small indie videogame called World of Warcraft, I’ve been slightly annoyed by how little the Ice Shard base lights up. I decided then, some better lighting would spice things up a bit. A trip to IKEA and some double sided tape later, Frostmourne was illuminated by dioder RGB leds. Until the power supply failed…
Going from control to ctrl
No better moment to seriously up the lighting game for this piece of video-game replica history then from a broken state. With the power supply gone, Frostmourne stood in darkness, asleep, waiting, until the time came to rise to power again. The RGB used to be controller by the dioder remote (if you can call it that, it’s wired) but that just won’t do anymore… Arduino powers activate!
How cool would it be to control the lights with my smartphone, I thought. Settling on bluetooth as my choice for controlling the dioder after learning about a product called the RFduino, a small arduino with build-in bluetooth. I made an android app with a couple of sliders for the color selection based on a project I found on the RFduino forums (I tried finding it again but no dice). Modified the dioder control board to talk to the arduino and called it a day. It worked, barely…
The bluetooth version kinda worked for a while but wasn’t as successful as I had hoped. By this point I had abandoned both domotiga and heimcontrol.js as my home automation efforts. Let’s do this the right way and make something new to could also be controlled by whatever home automation system I wanted. Did some research, came across the node-mcu ESP8266 board and the MQTT protocol and a choice was made. ESP it!
Reusing the board I made for the RFduino, now connected to the node-mcu, I loaded the firmware with MQTT support and stuck it all in a breadboard. Having chosen Home Assistant as my new home automation system I easily added the device and started testing. Hooray, it worked!
A video of the new ice shard will be inserted here shortly…