New Open Source project at HGI for SmartHome Device Abstraction Templates Provide Feedback

HGI has defined a new project, under Apache 2.0 open source licensing, to create a framework and set of examples describing SmartHome appliance functionality (control and read-out of devices) using XML and with XSD to ensure proper conformance. Individuals/companies/fora are invited to comment and contribute.

The goal of the project is to have a basis for technologies such as OSGi to provide appliance interface APIs to software application developers, independent of the home area network technology (ZigBee, EnOcean, Z-Wave, EchonetLite etc). Use of the SmartHome Device Templates (SDTs) is proposed as part of the extended API for the OSGi Device Abstraction Layer (DAL, RFC196), an element within SmartHome gateway implementations. The SDT is explicitly aimed to be applicable within multiple execution environments however.

HGI has long been in discussions with OSGi Alliance, Broadband Forum, oneM2M, EnOcean Alliance, EchonetLite Consortium and other bodies regarding the necessity of SDTs to enable a mass market in Smart Home services. HGI also is in close collaboration with the European Commission’s “Smart Appliances” project, which complements the new HGI project.

HGI plans to later hold a proof of concept event that allows HGI companies to integrate and demonstrate their SDT and DAL technologies (applications, abstraction layer, device drivers, end devices, possibly cloud platforms).

The 25-minute presentation will cover the above points, reference a number of relevant projects with similar goals, outline the initial approach of HGI, and invite comments. A close collaboration with OSGi activities on DAL and API design is crucial for a successful application of the SDT to the OSGi framework.

Presenter: Andreas Kraft


5 Open Source Home Automation Systems

The Internet of Things isn’t just a buzzword, it’s a quickly growing fact.

With an ever-increasing amount of devices on the market to help you automate, protect, and monitor your house, it has never been simpler nor more tempting to try your hand at home automation. Whether you’re attempting to manipulate your HVAC(Heating Ventilating Air Conditioning) system from another location, integrate a home cinema, defend your home from fraud, fire, or other threats, lower your energy usage, or merely control just a few lights, there are lots of devices offered at your convenience.

While connected devices often contain personal components, a good first step in bringing open source into your home automation system is to make certain the device which ties your devices together-and presents you with an interface to them (the “hub”)-is open source. Luckily, you’ll find so many options around the world, with choices to run on everything from your always-on personal computer to a Raspberry Pi.

Take a look at a portion of our favs.


Calaos is designed as a full-stack home automation platform, together with a server application, touch screen interface, web application, native mobile software for iOS and Android, and a preconfigured Linux operating platform to run underneath. English speaking readers should be advised that, while some English documentation is present, some of the instructional material and support online forums are mainly in French.

Calaos is licensed under version 3 of the GPL and you can view its source code on GitHub.


Domoticz is a home automation system with a quite wide selection of supported devices, covering anything from weather stations to smoke detectors to remote controls, with a large number of additional alternative party integrations documented on the project’s website. It is designed with an HTML5 frontend, making it reachable from both desktop computer browsers along with most modern phones, and is light-weight, running on a wide range of low power items like the Raspberry Pi.

Domoticz is written mostly in C/C++ under the GPLv3, and its source code can easily be browsed on GitHub.

Home Assistant

Home Assistant is an open source home automation platform, and is designed to be simply deployed on essentially any machine which can run Python 3, from a Raspberry Pi to a NAS system, and also ships with a Docker container to make deploying on other systems a cinch. It incorporates with a good number of open source and business oriented offerings, helping you to link, like, IFTTT, weather information, or your Amazon Echo device, to controls from locks to lights to even a command line notifier.

Home Assistant is released under an MIT license, and its source code is available from GitHub.


OpenHAB (mean Open Home Automation Bus) is among the best known home automation tools amongst open source buffs, with a considerable user community and a lot of supported devices and integrations. Written in Java, openHAB is easily transportable across virtually all major OS’s and also runs properly on the Raspberry Pi. Supporting hundreds of devices, openHAB is designed to be device-agnostic while making it easier for developers to incorporate their own devices or plugins to the system. OpenHAB also ships iOS and Android applications for device control, plus a design tools so its possible to build your own User interface for your smart home system.

You can discover openHAB’s source code on GitHub licensed under the Eclipse Public License.


OpenMotics is a smart home automation system with both software and hardware under open source licenses, designed at providing a thorough system for controlling devices rather than stitching together a lot of devices from various providers. Distinct from some of the other systems designed mostly for simple retrofitting, OpenMotics is focused on a hard wired solution. For extra, see our full article from OpenMotics backend developer Frederick Ryckbosch.

The source code for OpenMotics is licensed under the GPLv2 and is available for download on GitHub.

These aren’t the only available options, certainly. A wide range of home automation enthusiasts choose a diverse solution, or possibly plan to roll their unique. Several other potential choices to look at include LinuxMCE, PiDome, MisterHouse or smarthomatic. Other people opt for unique smart home devices without including them into a single complete system.

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