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Author Topic: PC Companion - What can it do for you?  (Read 96142 times)

Knightrider

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PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« on: March 16, 2009, 07:36:45 PM »

Just some thoughts about the Temperature based trigger in the full version of PC Companion.
These triggers are great, in the winter, I've used them to activate the heat tape on my pipes to prevent them from freezing.  In the spring, I've used them to trigger audible reminders to tell my wife to open and close the windows.  Currently, I'm configuring them to over-ride my furnace to keep it from running when it 70 outside.
This summer, I'm planning on it activating an attic fan to keep the upstairs cool.
For the future, I'm going to set up some solar water heating systems.  Guess what I'll use for that?

Just some random thoughts on the greatness of PC Companion.

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HA Dave

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2009, 08:39:45 PM »

Just some thoughts about the Temperature based trigger in the full version of PC Companion.

Like others (I would guess) I've played with the trial version of PCC but found it a bit complex. How about some step-by-step on how to set up a freeze warning. That alone would be enough to create a few converts!
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Knightrider

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2009, 09:05:50 PM »

A picture is worth 1000 words
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Tuicemen

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2009, 09:15:24 PM »

Like others (I would guess) I've played with the trial version of PCC but found it a bit complex.
I'm sure this may be true for some options Dave_x10_L!
And with discussion (suggestions) this can be improve!
Most of the newer adds can't get any simpler. Infact with the Full version even A 4 year old can work it!
The more options users request (and get added) will make any program Complexed.
As you can see from Knightriders Pic, setting up a weather trigger can't get any simpler!
Or can it?  ???
 >!
« Last Edit: March 16, 2009, 09:17:23 PM by Tuicemen »
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Kramer Chins

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2009, 10:02:14 PM »

Like others (I would guess) I've played with the trial version of PCC but found it a bit complex.
I'm sure this may be true for some options Dave_x10_L!
And with discussion (suggestions) this can be improve!
Most of the newer adds can't get any simpler. Infact with the Full version even A 4 year old can work it!
The more options users request (and get added) will make any program Complexed.
As you can see from Knightriders Pic, setting up a weather trigger can't get any simpler!
Or can it?  ???
 >!

 B:( Damn I must only be 3..............  rofl
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Tuicemen

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2009, 10:39:13 PM »


 B:( Damn I must only be 3..............  rofl
rofl well X10  claims a 4 year old can set up a audio video sender and I had issues with it the first time!
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Tuicemen

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2009, 11:29:58 AM »

Knightrider
Thanks for starting this thread!
As many Know PC Companion morphed from X10WavPlayer.
It maybe beneficial to list some of the options, how one uses them may vary And I love to read about them!

1: Play wave files or any media file triggered from x10 activity, weather, phone call.
2: View and control up to 12 cameras and 12 pan & tilts.
3: Capture video or snapshots from said cams even with a motion sensor
4: Display Caller Id with a fading pop up and speak callers name & number.
5: Announce your current weather, current time or reminders for that day.
6: Display a floorplan lay out of your X10 devices from which you can control them.
7: Watch security door/window modules via AHP and batch files on the floor plan.
8: Check your email.
9: Log and read x10 activity and phone calls received.
10: Send logs to a web site.
11: Play and control Cd's and DVDs.
12: Interface with Any IR controlled device you can control with the VCR.
13: Unlock the hidden features of a VCR Commander which enables controlling multiple devices and not just 2 commands for each.
14: String IR commands together and start them with a single X10 command.
15: Interface with Any X10 RF remote and utilize the RF commands from them expanding ones x10 available codes.
16: Turn any X10 RF remote even a PalmPad into a remote mouse to control ones PC.
17: Make a phone call.
18: Many functions can be started without having PC Companion already running via a batch file.
19: PC Companion will make these batch files for you!
20: Open another program or connect to a website (IE)


I'm sure I missed some Options :-[ and I'm sure with Suggestions this list will contine to grow!
Some of my favorite Options are the ones I spent the most time adding Weather, FloorPlan layout and the Commander Control (VCR Commander IR interface).
I don't use half of the options of PCC regularly so finding cool ways to utilize them is up to you! ;)
Hopefuly users will post some cool or even not so cool ways they use it!
 >!
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hawk1

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2009, 05:26:33 PM »

Well, i'm still playing around with PCC but i can vouch that it is a blast!  :)%    I haven't even touched all of the features yet, but the ones that i have work very well.

First of all the talking weather feature is outstanding! And with the weather triggers i can have PCC tell me whether or not to turn the heat lamps on in the well house or turn the house fans on!   #:)

This is the cream of the crop: The VCR Commander Plugin!  I got this thing working pretty much 100%! Still got a little tweaking to do, but for the most part its good to go.   #:)

Through my trial and error (mostly my error) i have this beauty turning my tv, vcr/dvd combo, and satellite on!  Tuicemen outdid himself on this one!   :)%

Update: I now have BVC telling PCC to turn on those theater devices! WAF went through the roof! (i still have to hide the wires though, until i get a powermid).  :'

By the way, you can use more than one vcr commander to do different actions.  I have 2 working; one for the tv, the other for the vcr/dvd combo and satellite.

The only code that wasn't in PCC was my Aiwa Receiver, but what the heck, i just leave it on.  Since were either watching tv or listening to music.

i do have one more vcr commander that i'm going to play with envolving a video switch box, but that comes later!

One note for users out there with another transceiver besides the cm15a. (v572a, etc...) you have to configure it to not tranceive the codes your going to use with the vcr commander.  What happens is, when you transmit the codes to the vcr cdr the other transceiver will transmit again. Thus turning everything off in my case!

I normally don't even use transceived codes on my cm15a and let the v572 do the work.  But like i said you have to disable the codes for vcr cdr. (as far as i know, this is just how i got it to work for me) sorry if this is not the case.

The camera part i'm still working on, but i do have all of my cameras showing in the CAM Plugin!

The Reminders!  I now setup all my reminders for the day in one paragraph and have BVC tell PCC to read me what i have to do today!  With both PCC and BVC THE WORLD IS OURS!!!    8)       sorry, just got carried away.

I guess what i'm saying is if you haven't got the full version of PCC and BVC then you my friend are missing out!!  Where else can you have weather, cameras, triggers, sound, music, remote control, voice control, reminders, all the phone utilities (i haven't got to play with this yet) security plugin, having someone talk back to you, play your dvd's, control just about everything that AHP doesn't!

Thank you very much for an excellent program Tuicemen!   >!     #:)   And I didn't forget you Bill!    >!   #:)     What can i say?  With Bill's help I have Christina (BVC) tell me where all my movies are!

I have over a thousand movies and Bill helped my get then imported in. Now i ask Christina where is Tombstone? she replies: Tombstone in number 521 in movie cabinet 1!  Ain't that something?   ;)

Well, i've said enough.  I didn't want to right a book, but it looks like i did!  I'm sorry, just excited!   :)%

Do yourself a favor and get these two programs and make AHP complete!   >!

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Jsnlong

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2009, 10:08:11 PM »

I was looking for a floor plan software. I wanted to be able to look at the computer and see what was left on or open also I wanted it easy enough for my wife and kids to use.

SO chatting in the Home automation chat room ( http://www.bdshost.com/ac/ ) Tuicemen step up to the plate to help and man did he hit a homerun!!!!!!!

I keep the floorplan screen of PCC up on the automation computer in my office all the time. I don't even use AHP to control the house manually(I only use AHP to save macros) and before I leave the house I peek in and at a quick glance can tell what lights/TVs are on and even what door was left open. If a light or tv is on I can just click on it to shut it off.

The plan is to set up a small touch screen right at my front door.  This would stop me from the walking into the office. I could control my whole house at my front door.

The part my wife likes is being able to tell my 5 year old to go make sure all the lights and Tv's are off be for leaving. He runs in and clicks away. He also likes to sit up late with me at night and look at the floor plan to plan a route to the kitchen. Then he clicks on all the lights  he needs to have there and then comes back an clicks them off.


PCC is a great software and PCC and BVC tag team is unbeatable. We just need to come up with away to download to the CM15 and we could stop using AHP all together!!!
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astrothug

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2009, 08:04:54 PM »

Jsnlong

 I have played with this free software from www.vcrib.com it has somethings that are very cool, like voice recognition,  winamp plugin, weather, and this is cool it has bluetooth so with your bluetooth devise is on it will know who is in the house, things being worked on the software will track movements and such. takes abit to set up. but its all free.. does the same as the 3 party software and x10 software all in one package.

David
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HA Dave

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2009, 09:57:14 PM »

Jsnlong

 I have played with this free software from www.vcrib.com ... and this is cool it has bluetooth so with your bluetooth devise is on it will know who is in the house 

I want that technology!!!! I really think to have a house know when we're home... or not.. would open the door to some great automation.

astrothug.... will the bluetooth software work as a stand alone... or would I have to covert over to V-Crib completely?
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astrothug

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2009, 11:01:28 PM »

I tried running X10 software and the vcrib as I like some of the stuff in x10 software with sucsess but the vcrib software takes a bit of getting use too. I want to use the bluetooth idea and some of the other features so ya Dave its releasable to run both...
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Tuicemen

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2009, 08:11:10 AM »

Actually with the release of the 2008 express service patch there is a sample program for bluetooth discovery so it is just a mater of time before all thirdparty programs that wish it added have it! ;)
Quote
will the bluetooth software work as a stand alone
Humm............. ::) maybe I should look more at creating small stand alone programs, then adding features to PCC!  :'

hawk1 & Jsnlong nice to see your having fun using PCC! ;)
 >!
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HA Dave

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2009, 01:59:56 PM »

.... maybe I should look more at creating small stand alone programs

When I bought my VIC-20... it came with no software. Heck.. it didn't even come with the recorder device needed to load the software. But it didn't take long to find the magazines that printed simple software that users could type-in themselves.. and then save on tape. After about six weeks of study... I could modify what I had learned into my own (silly) useful little programs.

Then.. in the early 90's.. Windows was much like [the] iphone [OS] is now. Everybody was writting really nice tiny little apps (programs). Although many were just little games... some performed really useful functions. The really good ones were elegant in their simplicity. They downloaded, installed, was obvious as how to use, and was in use immediately.

The vast majority of the programs would only run on certain motherboards... or required a certain brand of soundcard. But with a bit of downloading and testing... some really great little programs could be found. Of course... I worked with computers in an office environment. So I have used almost all of Bill Gates stuff, and many other "grownup" softwares too. I have taken many classes... both classroom and on-line.

But... for as long as I've used computers... I have loved those tiny little programs.

It kinda bums me out (we used to say that in the 80's-90's) when I find a program (that may have many useful functions)... that is too complex to be easy to understand. Or it doesn't have a well written manual.... or an on-line training... or whatever. So the programs usefulness remains hidden behind the know-how.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2009, 02:01:56 PM by Dave_x10_L »
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Tuicemen

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Re: PC Companion - What can it do for you?
« Reply #14 on: March 23, 2009, 11:11:41 AM »

With the release of the New RF/IR capable Icon Remote. I can now state that the remote option was designed to take the Icon to the next step!
I mean that remote will be everyones prize!
What it can't trigger PC Companion most likely can watching for signals from it!
This option is available for any X10 remote so those that don't get a New Icon can still enjoy some unusual options!
Turn off your PC
Reboot your PC
Speak time
Speak your current weather
Speak and remind you of important reminders for that date.
Move the mouse on the PC and perform mouse functions
and the list goes on......
And it doesn't use standard x10 on/off codes  ;)
Want your remote to do something that it can' do now?
Drop me a note and I'll see if I can add it! ;)
 >!
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