What is it exactly for?

Posted on
Wed Feb 27, 2019 7:49 am
MarcoGT offline
Posts: 640
Joined: Sep 11, 2014
Location: Germany

What is it exactly for?

Hi all,

I am not getting what this plugin is for.
Is it to control Indigo Devices using Alexa?
I have a Sonos Beam with Alexa integrated; would it be possible to use it and control Indigo devices via Alexa?

Thanks
Marco

Posted on
Wed Feb 27, 2019 1:01 pm
siclark offline
Posts: 891
Joined: Jun 13, 2017
Location: UK

Re: What is it exactly for?

Yes, exactly. It creates dummy hue devices that control switches (real or virtual) single devices or action groups.
You can then ask Alexa to turn on or off (or even dim) the device and indigo will do the action.
If you set a dim level then that can be passed back to indigo as a variable to trigger another action.


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Posted on
Wed Feb 27, 2019 1:17 pm
autolog offline
Posts: 2816
Joined: Sep 10, 2013
Location: West Sussex, UK [GMT+1]

Re: What is it exactly for?

To add to Simon's good overview; you also need to have an Amazon Echo (gen 1) or an Amazon echo Dot (gen 1 or gen 2) for the plugin to work. As long as you have at least one of the aforementioned devices in your Alexa network then later generations will also likely work as the commands get funnelled through the earlier gen models to Indigo. :)

Posted on
Wed Feb 27, 2019 1:55 pm
rgspb offline
Posts: 165
Joined: Apr 24, 2009
Location: Florida

Re: What is it exactly for?

It's a great plugin! I've been adding things to it everyday. I've got my Somfy shades working through it. The big difference is how you tell Alexa to perform the action. There is a Somfy add-in for Alexa, which allows you to control your shades directly with Alexa. BUT, you have to say "Alexa, tell Somfy to blah blah blah". To which she replies "I have Somfy MyLink activated, what would you like to do"? And on and on. With this Alexa plug in i just tell her to "Turn on ..." or "Turn off..." and she says "OK!" and does it. The drawback in this case is I can't say Open or Close because that doesn't translate, but it's easy to remember On for Open or Off for Close.

Posted on
Wed Feb 27, 2019 6:05 pm
ckeyes888 offline
Posts: 2100
Joined: Nov 26, 2009
Location: Kalispell, MT

Re: What is it exactly for?

Just for the record you can use virtually any phrase you like, e.g. Open/Close, by setting up Alexa routines.
I use a number of them, “Alexa, reset the router.”, “Alexa, open the garage door” etc.

Carl

Posted on
Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:40 am
MarcoGT offline
Posts: 640
Joined: Sep 11, 2014
Location: Germany

Re: What is it exactly for?

autolog wrote:
To add to Simon's good overview; you also need to have an Amazon Echo (gen 1) or an Amazon echo Dot (gen 1 or gen 2) for the plugin to work. As long as you have at least one of the aforementioned devices in your Alexa network then later generations will also likely work as the commands get funnelled through the earlier gen models to Indigo. :)


Ok, perfect.
But I think they are not available on the market, are they?

Posted on
Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:47 am
rgspb offline
Posts: 165
Joined: Apr 24, 2009
Location: Florida

Re: What is it exactly for?

ckeyes888 wrote:
Just for the record you can use virtually any phrase you like, e.g. Open/Close, by setting up Alexa routines.
I use a number of them, “Alexa, reset the router.”, “Alexa, open the garage door” etc.

Carl


Are you setting up these routines in the Alexa App?

Posted on
Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:49 am
autolog offline
Posts: 2816
Joined: Sep 10, 2013
Location: West Sussex, UK [GMT+1]

Re: What is it exactly for?

MarcoGT wrote:
... But I think they are not available on the market, are they?

A quick check on Amazon UK found this: Certified Refurbished Amazon Echo Dot (Previous Generation - 2nd Gen), Black :)

UPDATE: You will need to search amazon.de as the above link is for devices that will only work in the UK. Otherwise I guess ebay may have them?

Posted on
Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:49 am
autolog offline
Posts: 2816
Joined: Sep 10, 2013
Location: West Sussex, UK [GMT+1]

Re: What is it exactly for?

rgspb wrote:
Are you setting up these routines in the Alexa App?


Yes - Setup via the iOS Alexa App :)

Posted on
Sun Mar 03, 2019 10:12 am
rgspb offline
Posts: 165
Joined: Apr 24, 2009
Location: Florida

Re: What is it exactly for?

Got this working, it's great! I haven't done a lot of experimenting with the Alexa app. It gets a little daunting trying to make Alexa, Siri, AND Indigo do what they're supposed to do :D

Posted on
Thu Apr 25, 2019 12:35 am
rhanson offline
Posts: 154
Joined: Apr 30, 2013

Re: What is it exactly for?

So, to date I have avoided having any of these "cloud assistant" devices in the house. Can an Echo do anything locally if its connectivity to AWS servers were restricted? Or is there a bunch of back-and-forth over the net to accomplish simple, local tasks?

Alternatively, is there a way to whitelist only certain Alexa commands/skills? So that it could only control lights, but not be able to "tell me a joke" or whatever else it does nowadays.

Does HomeKit have a local-only option -- in case I buy one of the 8 devices on the market that seem to have HomeKit support :-)

As you can tell, I'm looking for local-only voice control, without opening Pandora's box of internet-connected assistance. I have Snips on my list to play with, seems it would be easy enough to create a Snips-Indigo bridge, as the API is fully documented.

Thanks for any advice...

Posted on
Thu Apr 25, 2019 12:57 am
siclark offline
Posts: 891
Joined: Jun 13, 2017
Location: UK

Re: What is it exactly for?

The simple answer to your question is no. Alexa needs to communicate with AWS servers to do the voice to text conversion. There is no way round that. You could restrict it's connection to other sites in case its hacked but no way to limit Amazon getting everything.

As you say, snips is probably the best option for exclusive local voice commands but last time I looked a decent mic array, case and pi came in at $190 so not cheap.


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