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Eve - Smart Irrigation Controller


crazyeights

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crazyeights

Hi guys,

 

I have been involved in a project, called. Eve.  It's a smart irrigation (or sprinkler) controller with moisture sensors and weather prediction that works together to set your watering schedule, and adjust daily as conditions vary.  Eve is 100% designed for SmartThings.

 

Would love to know your thoughts as we plan on launching the Kickstarter soon.  And, if you can think of any cool things it can do with SmartThings!

 

http://www.eveirrigation.com/

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cskenney

I was thinking about this at first and thought why would I need SmartThings to run my sprinklers.  Then I went to the link and learned there are Adam moisture sensors to go with the Eve controllers.  Integrated with the weather report and the system only waters when water is needed.  Seems like a pretty good idea to me and would save water.

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Welcome to the forums.  I guess I'll start with questions.  I have a controller now.  It's a 12 zone controller with 8 active.  Is it possible to integrate Eve into my existing system?  Lastly, any clue as to when the kickstarter goes live?

 

Dave

 

I just watched a YouTube video on Eve and it looked awesome.  

 

 

The cool thing. When a YouTube is over you know how it gives you options of other videos?  Home Server Show was one of the recommendations.  It was the last episode where we talked SmartThings.

 

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crazyeights

Welcome to the forums.  I guess I'll start with questions.  I have a controller now.  It's a 12 zone controller with 8 active.  Is it possible to integrate Eve into my existing system?  Lastly, any clue as to when the kickstarter goes live?

 

Dave

 

I just watched a YouTube video on Eve and it looked awesome.  

 

(Eve video)

 

The cool thing. When a YouTube is over you know how it gives you options of other videos?  Home Server Show was one of the recommendations.  It was the last episode where we talked SmartThings.

 

(Home Server Show video)

 

Small world on the youtube suggestion, that's awesome!  

 

Regarding your setup with 12 zones...Eve is designed to replace your standard irrigation controller, so, all that needs to happen is remove the 8 active zones from your existing irrigation controller, plug them into Eve and you're ready to go.  If you ever decide to use the rest of your 4 unused zones, you can have 2 Eves connect to the same SmartThings hub, no problem.  Alternatively, if you decided you had some use for just the old timer functionality, you could use some zones on your existing timer and some on Eve (but Eve can do just straight up manual timer scheduling too).

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JROrtiz1489090435

The timing of this is impeccable. I've been researching "smart" irrigation controllers for about two months now and was getting ready to explore building my own since none of the solutions I found are actually "smart". There are some controllers out there that allow remote management but they are still standalone and don't interact with anything else. On top of that, they use proprietary protocols so you can't do much in terms of integration. Needless to say, I'm excited to see this.

 

Just FYI, my Dad has a landscaping business and I grew up installing and setting up irrigation systems so some of my input will be from an installer's point of view.

 

  • Have you considered making an outdoor or rugged version? A lot of my Dad's customers have their timer installed outside their home. Having a weatherproof outdoors version would allow these types of customers to easily replace their existing controller without having to worry about extending and routing the wires indoors.
  • I noticed in the video that you used screw in wire contacts as opposed to snap-in. While it's not a big deal, the snap-in connectors make the design a little more tool-less and if you install a lot of these, not having to deal with a small screw for each station is definitely nice. Here's an example of a timer that uses snap-in style contact points (http://i21.geccdn.net/site/images/large_wco/B735631_4wco.gif)
  • For the software, the ability to load a custom map and place the stations on the map would provide a great way to manage them. For homes that require multiple stations per lawn section due to water pressure issues or simply having a large lawn area, the naming can get complicated and a map would be a lot easier to really be able to identify what area each station is covering.
  • Custom watering schedules would also be nice to have. The ability to create a set of preset schedules based on the time of the year and be able to load those presets to any controller. This would really come in handy for those customers who choose not to include the Adam sensors as part of their setup or for new lawn installations which would require more water than usual. Being able to simply load these presets would save a lot of time.
  • Back-up and restore profiles: be able to save existing schedules so in the event of an inadvertent reset or need for a reset, the back-up can be loaded an avoid the need to manually set it up again. This would be separate from the custom presets.
  • Include a manual bypass switch on the controller itself. If, for whatever reason, the customer is unable to connect to the controller via the apps, a simple switch at the controller would allow him or her to turn all schedules off. Pretty standard feature on irrigation timers that the Eve would probably benefit from including.
  • This is probably pie in the sky, but it would be cool if instead of just having LEDs light-up the numbers on the front plate, the face was actually an LED matrix. I've become a fan of the matrix since it offers so much flexibility. This would also make it easy to update the display through software/firmware. This makes it easy to introduce new features to the controller in the future. Plus, I think an LED matrix would simply look more elegant/premium, though I'm sure it probably costs a bit more.
  • How would a multiple controller setup work? Whether on the same network/property or at different networks/properties; is there a plan to be able to link controllers to be aware of each other or ability to manage multiple controllers separately?

 

I hope this is type of feedback you were looking for. Looking forward to the Kickstarter and good luck!

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crazyeights

Wow JROrtiz, that's quite the reply!  Thanks for the points, these are great!  Some responses...

 

  • Outdoor version:  Eve will fit into a standard orbit outdoor enclosure, Model # 57095, for now that is the solution
  • Snap-in contacts:  We can check this out, from my experience I thought the screws would be preferred, as many snap type I have used stop working after a half dozen uses - then loose wires become a much bigger issue. This was a different application so maybe these snaps are better; have you had a different experience with the durability of the snaps?
  • Custom maps for station identification:  That is an awesome idea but probably not feasible right now.  We'll look into it for sure though.  
  • Custom watering schedules (for those without Adam sensors):  The intention is that the standard program can run with or without Adam sensors, and some combination in between (for example, 1 Adam sensor for multiple zones).  We are implementing various modes that address some of your concerns.  Not ready to divulge specifics, but there will be provisions for newly planted plants.  There are also slope or clay type routines that will cycle to allow soak in.  
  • Backup profiles:  The schedule is saved to “the cloud”, and preferences are saved in the app.
  • Manual bypass on the controller:  I think this can be done with a minor code change, good idea
  • LED matrix: Maybe another model in the future :)
  • Multiple controller setup:  Right now they would operate independently, there is not really a limit on how many you can use.  Just assign a different name to each one.  The nice thing about the infrastructure is that we can easily add another “application” for a multiple system setup that can talk to all of them together, for that type of setup the user would select that “app” and all controllers would be aware of each other.  We can adapt our current application to accommodate this.

 

Keep 'em coming, if you have any more :)

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