Allen Pan has wired up his home automation system to be controlled by memorable tunes from the classic Zelda franchise.
With Zelda: Breath of the Wild out on the Nintendo Switch, I made a home automation system based off the Zelda series using the ocarina from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Help Me Make More Awesome Stuff! https://www.patreon.com/sufficientlyadvanced Subscribe! http://goo.gl/xZvS5s Follow Sufficiently Advanced!
Released in 1998, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
is the best game ever is still an iconic entry in the retro gaming history books.
Very few games have stuck with me in the same way Ocarina has, and I think it’s fair to say that, with the continued success of the Zelda franchise, I’m not the only one who has a special place in their heart for Link, particularly in this musical outing.
Allen, or Sufficiently Advanced, as his YouTube subscribers know him, has used a Raspberry Pi to detect and recognise key tunes from the game, with each tune being linked (geddit?) to a specific task. By playing Zelda’s Lullaby (E, G, D, E, G, D), for instance, Allen can lock or unlock the door to his house. Other tunes have different functions: Epona’s Song unlocks the car (for Ocarina noobs, Epona is Link’s horse sidekick throughout most of the game), and Minuet of Forest waters the plants.
So how does it work?
It’s a fairly simple setup based around note recognition. When certain notes are played in a specific sequence, the Raspberry Pi detects the tune via a microphone within the Amazon Echo-inspired body of the build, and triggers the action related to the specific task. The small speaker you can see in the video plays a confirmation tune, again taken from the video game, to show that the task has been completed.
As for the tasks themselves, Allen has built a small controller for each action, whether it be a piece of wood that presses down on his car key, a servomotor that adjusts the ambient temperature, or a water pump to hydrate his plants. Each controller has its own small ESP8266 wireless connectivity module that links back to the wireless-enabled Raspberry Pi, cutting down on the need for a ton of wires about the home.
And yes, before anybody says it, we’re sure that Allen is aware that using tone recognition is not the safest means of locking and unlocking your home. This is just for fun.
Do-it-yourself home automation
While we don’t necessarily expect everyone to brush up on their ocarina skills and build their own Zelda-inspired home automation system, the idea of using something other than voice or text commands to control home appliances is a fun one.
You could use facial recognition at the door to start the kettle boiling, or the detection of certain gasses to – ahem!– spray an air freshener.
We love to see what you all get up to with the Raspberry Pi. Have you built your own home automation system controlled by something other than your voice? Share it in the comments below.