I’ve finally figured out what folks can do with those 4-year old Android phones, and I’ve just finished writing up version .01! Announcing my newest “pet project” AutoRoboIntercom!

    AutoRoboIntercom is your basic auto-discovering intercom system, with a twist or two. It can be used without an internet connection, and won’t compromise your security.

    Simply load AutoRoboIntercom on your Android 2.1+ device and connect it to your Wifi network. You now have a robotic intercom system. That’s it, no configuration necessary (though you can set your room/user name from the menu.)

    You can type or talk (speech to text) and it will be broadcast to all connected clients on the network. Clients hear “(Name) said (Message)”.

    This means AutoRoboIntercom can be used as an intercom system using old phones around your house, or an ‘around-the-house’ type intercom system using the phones in your pocket. You never need to think about domain configuration or pay for some proprietary software that will probably spy on you later.

    So for example you’re in a house with 5 rooms, named:
    Hunter’s Den
    The Garage
    Sallie’s Room
    Jen’s Room
    The Kitchen

    Hunter has just finished work on his latest app, and wants to let the rest of the house know it’s done. He taps the ‘record’ button in AutoRoboIntercom on his ancient HTC Hero Phone (Android 2.1) and says “Hey everyone! Come check this out I just finished an app!”

    Sallie, Jen, Mom, and Ben (working in the Garage) all hear:

    “Hunter’s Den said “Hey everyone! Come check this out I just finished an app!”

    Everyone hears this message read to them in the text-to-speech voice which is installed on their various Android phones throughout the house. They know who said it, so they’ve got the context and know just where to go. Some reply with a “be right there!” while others just run down to the den. Hunter hears the replies in proper queue order without worrying about having to say “over” or messages coming in simultaneously like on the walkie talkie system he had back in the 1980s.

    AutoRoboIntercom has been updated to include the underpinnings of a remote command protocol, as well as the first example “Battery Monitor”.

    Simply click on any of the clients in the client list, select ‘Battery Level’, and you’ll shortly hear a voice say to you “The Battery in “Room Name” is X Percent Full”.

    Under the hood there’s a network call/response mechanism between the clients requesting battery info from each other and filtering out unnecessary messages. In this way it is much like the token-ring networks of days long past.

    As usual it’s fully open source on GitHub. For those interested, there’s some very straightforward code involved and it starts us off on the path of automatically connected remote clients with a range of capabilities, my original design for AutoRoboIntercom. Check out my github profile huntergdavis.

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