EHIHA 2007 Home Control Contest Winners - Second Place

Smarthome Home Control Contest Winners
Second Place
Backyard Theater Scene
Mike Morper of Trabuco Canyon CA

Products: Indigo 2.0 INSTEON-compatible Software, INSTEON SwitchLinc Dimmer, INSTEON PowerLinc Controller USB

Mike set up a backyard theater to entertain his family and friends. With the help of INSTEON technology, he has created the ultimate backyard entertainment experience that lets his computer run the party, leaving him to play the happy host.

Running off a Mac Mini computer and the Indigo Software, Mike kicks off the night's entertainment with his favorite tunes from his iTunes playlist. As the sun sets and the skies darken, the iTunes visualizer projects onto the 94-inch screen in the back yard. Communicating through the PowerLinc Controller, Indigo sends a command to the INSTEON SwitchLinc Dimmers that control the patio lights, landscaping lights and the lights around the built-in BBQ.

As it gets darker, the Mac Mini fires up the movie. Just like at the theater, a custom movie trailer created by Mike welcomes everyone to the "Morperhaus Theatre." As the trailer plays, Indigo dims all the lights in the backyard to 40% -- just enough light to let folks know the movie is starting and to find their seats. When the movie finally begins, Indigo turns off the landscape lighting and dims the patio and BBQ lights to 20% -- just enough light for guests to find their way to the food and bathroom.

At the end of the movie, Indigo winds down the evening with a few final tricks:

  1. Starts the iTunes playlist
  2. Stops the movie from playing
  3. Tells Indigo to bring up the house lights. In addition to all the backyard lights turning on, lights throughout the house fire up to provide a well-lit path out of the home for Mike's guests.
  4. Finally, Indigo enables lights on the side of the house, garage and deck area, allowing plenty of lighting for taking down the gear. 1.5 hours after the movie has ended, Indigo once again takes care of things and shuts off all the lights in the house.

Click the 'Play Button' in the video window below to see how the Backyard Theater works.

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