A tiny device the size of a box of matches that costs less than $40 could revolutionize the home security industry. We’re talking of course about the Raspberry Pi, the tiny little computer which has breathed new life into the DIY home security systems scene. The micro computer has already spawned a whole host of homebrew security systems and it could put custom security solutions within reach of more Americans than ever before.
If you haven’t heard of the Rasperry Pi, it is a small device that is actually a full computer for less than the cost of a meal at a nice restaurant. It was developed by a non-profit corporation in an effort to make computers more accessible. It has been turned into just about anything you can imagine. The applications truly range from robot teddy bears to home security systems.
But, for the purposes of this blog we are more interested in the latter application than the former (okay, maybe robotic teddy bears are a little interesting but we’ll try to keep it on topic for your sake). For the home security side of things, you just need to take a look at projects like PrivateEyePi.
PrivateEyePi is an open-source home security project that uses the Raspberry Pi computer as its basis and is capable of providing fairly comprehensive home security systems for those on a budget. The PrivateEyePi is automatable, customizable and just plain cool. It can detect intrusions through switches attached to doors and windows, motion detectors, or both (much the same way that professional home security systems do).
The PrivateEyePi also has the ability to allow you to monitor cameras remotely and even to check on the temperature of your home from afar, much like commercial home automation solutions do. You can access the system from your smart phone or tablet via the internet when you are on the go. This makes your home security systems available to you just about anywhere, without a monthly fee or an expensive install.
Of course, there is one big caveat. You have to build it all yourself. Well, you can buy the Raspberry Pi unit, but then you have to find the cameras, the motion detectors and the rest and wire it all together. Although there are instructions online, they are complicated enough to scare off all but the most adventurous DIYer. But, if you are the most adventurous DIYer then you’ll have a blast and save some money on the way.