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Challenging Event - Alexa and Virtual Device

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    Challenging Event - Alexa and Virtual Device

    I setup a virtual device that when on, triggers an event that turns multiple lights in my kitchen on. When off, turns those lights off. The device is simply called "Kitchen" so I can say "Alexa, Kitchen on/off". It's simple and works great.... except when someone turns the lights on the good old fashioned way with the switch.

    Then I have a virtual device that is off but manually have some kitchen lights on. So when I say "Alexa, Kitchen off" the virtual device is already off.

    Any ideas on how to overcome this?

    #2
    Every light in my house is Hue or GE Link but my roomies love to flip switches. Since it's my wife and stepson I probably couldn't throw them out. So I gave in and put Leviton and GE paddle switches through the whole house. I put them there for one reason. HomeSeer checks to see if any are switched off - leaving the lights unreachable. If there are any off HomeSeer turns them back on and shuts off the bulbs.

    They could control the lights with the phones, ControLinks and KeypadLinks spread around the house, or the Echo and two Dots but those switches are just too tempting. One of these days I'll tell my wife her predilection for those switches cost about $1000 not counting my time.

    The only other option I came up with was wiring the old switches to give them a shock every time they flipped one.

    Comment


      #3
      change the event that triggers on the virtual device so instead of "the device changes and becomes..." to "the device had it's value set to...". That way if Alexa triggers the virtual device to an off state then the event will run regardless of whether it's already off or not...likewise do the same for your on event.

      If however the manual switch is overriding your physical zwave switch in that turning off the switch makes no difference then..
      * work out why they feel the need to use the manual logic and fix your on/off logic so there is no need
      * slap some tape across the switch
      * tape there hands together/or beat them with a stick =)

      Comment


        #4
        Create an extra event to watch the light status, if they change to on, it then changes the virtual switch to on as well.

        You could place additional conditions based on you use cases whether that would trigger turn on the other light as per scenario 1.

        Comment


          #5
          The OP was not totally clear if the switches provide instant status or not. If they do this can be overcome with programming. If not, your choices are swap out the switches, or perhaps add a light sensor to each room to try and detect when they are on or off. The HS-Wx100+ switches would be a great choice once they are back in stock.

          BTW there is a Group feature in the Alexa app that you might be able to use instead of a virtual device.

          John

          Comment


            #6
            My first thought when I read this last night, was duct tape the switch on.... or a small electric shock from the face plate of the switch.
            But I didn't want to sound goofy.

            The original poster didn't say how many fixtures, controled by how may switches, there should be some additional logic added to the event that would keep things synced with you virtual device,
            Blair

            HomeSeer: HS3 Pro 3.0.0.548
            Hometroller S6 | Devices: 832 | Events: 211
            Plug-Ins: Z-Wave .252 | HSTouch | RFXCOM | UltraRachio3 | Sonos
            BLLAN | BLPLEX | BLLOCK | NetCAM | Global Cache Pro | Blur-Iris4

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by ShimmerNZ View Post
              change the event that triggers on the virtual device so instead of "the device changes and becomes..." to "the device had it's value set to...". That way if Alexa triggers the virtual device to an off state then the event will run regardless of whether it's already off or not...likewise do the same for your on event.
              This is the answer. I don't think the Echo API checks the status of devices, so it will "set" the device Off even if it is already Off, likewise with On.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by denisl View Post
                I setup a virtual device that when on, triggers an event that turns multiple lights in my kitchen on. When off, turns those lights off... except when someone turns the lights on the good old fashioned way with the switch.
                So when I say "Alexa, Kitchen off" the virtual device is already off.
                Can you post a screen shot of your relevant events? What is the nature of the physical switches? Can HS determine their status?
                Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

                HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by mikaluch View Post
                  They could control the lights with the phones, ControLinks and KeypadLinks spread around the house, or the Echo and two Dots but those switches are just too tempting.
                  The irony is that if electrifying houses had required everyone to carry or locate a device that they had to fiddle with to turn the lights on and off and which occasionally do not work as expected, the introduction of wall switches that work intuitively and without fail would be hailed as a revolutionary innovation that adds the convenience of having the ability to switch a light on or off as you leave a room.
                  Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                  HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

                  HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by ShimmerNZ View Post
                    change the event that triggers on the virtual device so instead of "the device changes and becomes..." to "the device had it's value set to...". That way if Alexa triggers the virtual device to an off state then the event will run regardless of whether it's already off or not...likewise do the same for your on event.
                    Thanks everyone for your responses, apologies for the delayed response.
                    This was the fix ShimmerNZ, I just tested it and it works like a charm. I've been thinking up some crazy complex events in my head to check the status of all the lights in the kitchen. There seems to always be an easier way if you just ask the knowledgeable people on this forum.

                    My kitchen is all Cooper instant status switches by the way and there are 6 circuits total that Alexa is turning on.

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