Making an On Air sign for while I am in meetings
Still out of the office this week and some tinkering time for the new home. Besides the regular things that need to happen when you are renovating step-by-step I also am gradually installing some smart devices throughout the home to work with Home Assistant. Today I had time to install a simple on-air sign with off-the-shelf tech to show my girlfriend when I am on a call. In this post I am going to assume you have set up Home Assistant and have a basic understanding of its workings.
The best way I could think of to make a light switch was with a simple wifi socket as the only thing I want to do is turn on and off a light. Looking into different kinds the one that caught my eye was the Shelly Plug S (BOL | AMAZON) as this one also measures the power consumption that will come in handy for a future project where I want to see where my power is drawn the most. It is an easy-to-use wifi power socket, but just don’t install the cloud app if you don’t intend to use it (like I don’t intend to). The only thing you need to do to get it to work with Home Assistant is to set it to your own WiFi network by connecting to the created hotspot when plugging in the plug and going to 192.168.33.1. Make sure that you set a static IP. After that is done make sure to update the firmware. For me, it did not work in the web interface, but did instantly work with the online tool by giving it the IP that it has in my network and just copying the URL that is given.
Adding this to Home Assistant is just installing the Shelly integration and giving it the IP of the plug. With the integration, you can do all sorts of automation and data gathering, but for this purpose, I am only going to use the on and off function.
For detecting if I am in a meeting I didn’t want to go the route of looking up the mute status of my mic, but that of using to detect if I am in a Google Meets or Zoom call. For that I am using MuteSync where you can set it to detect if you are in Google Meets, Zoom, Teams or Discord. While officially made for their button you can also use their software for only the detecting part. Only tested Discord and Google Meets at this point and it works remarkably good. Just make sure to install the MuteSync Chrome Extension on the different profiles in Chrome where you want your Meets meeting to be detected otherwise it will not work for Meets. Discord sometimes doesn’t work for me, but as I won’t have official meetings there that is fine with me.
To make it work with Home Assistant just add the integration and fill in the IP of the computer where mutesync is running.
Lastly is just setting the automation in Home Assistant and you have a power socket that will turn on and off depending if you are in a meeting!