Brief Bio: I’ve been excited by technology since I was a kid, and found my way into a career in engineering that allows me to get paid to tell people about how technology can help make their everyday lives easier, both during work and play! I am a network engineer at heart, and have a home lab with extensive networking equipment, plus a large amount of integrated home automation and smart devices. I'm originally from Australia but relocated to NYC just over 10 years ago...and don't see myself leaving anytime soon!
Top DIY / IoT Blogs or Periodicals: SDxCentral mainly...and beyond that a combination of general reading (searching for a specific product or need) and product blogs (e.g. Sonos, Nest, etc). I work in technology engineering/sales, so speak to enterprise customers about IoT in their specific industries on a nearly daily basis - this provides significant insights direct from customer use cases. Any DIY / IoT devices beside Scout?: Nest (2 x Nest Thermostat, 2 x Nest Protect, 3 x Nest Cam), Kevo Smart Lock, 2 x Amazon Echo Dot, 2 x Sonos, multiple x Philips Hue Lighting.
How are they used & connected to Scout?: I can arm/disarm my Scout Alarm using Amazon Alexa, which is handy when when your hands are full on the way in/out. I also have all my Philips Hue lights flash for an active alarm. What’s your IFTTT “secret sauce” recipes?: I currently use IFTTT to disarm Scout when our door is unlocked using the Kevo mobile app. I have also an IFTTT "Panic Button" configured to turn the siren on/off in case of emergencies, and plan to experiment tying this to a physical Amazon IoT button when time permits...
Any "happy accidents" with recipe or device combo?: Not yet configured, but I expect to use all of my indoor Nest Cams as additional motion sensors when on vacation... Ever "hacked" or customized any devices, and if yes what/why?: I recently installed (water-proofed) Scout Access Sensors on the underside of my main + side exterior gates so that I can see if the gate is open/closed in the Scout mobile app, as well as ask Alexa using the Scout Alexa Skill.
What should everyone know regarding their DIY home security?: For iPhone users, the "Scout Alarm Mode" widget is by far the easiest way to arm/disarm your system, even from the lock screen!!!