The Internet of Things (IoT) has revolutionized the way people view and interact with the world. Not only that, it’s so easy to connect your life to the internet using a variety of off the shelf IoT products and a limitless amount of IoT projects across the web. In this post, we’ll be exploring IoT technology and IoT project ideas that you can implement in almost every aspect of your life, on your own.
Smart Office & Smart Home
Creating an IoT based smart home or office is easier than you think. Some use cases include: using motion sensors in rooms across your home to monitor which get the most use, plugging your home appliances into smart plugs to see how much energy they use over time, and putting contact sensors on doors to see which doors are open or closed from anywhere in the world. If you’re monitoring an exterior door, you can compare the drop and rise in temperature of your home or office to how long your doors have been left open. All of your new IoT sensors will start to pay for themselves once you see how you’re using your home or place of work, and make adjustments to make them more energy efficient.
The easiest way to get started is to buy a smart home system off the shelf. We like Samsung SmartThings for this.If you’re looking to prototype your own solution it’s easy enough to get started using an Arduino, Raspberry Pi, or other single board computers. You can learn more about how to create a smart office/home from this post.
Food and Beverage
Imagine walking to your fridge, excited to drink a nice cold beverage, only to find that someone has polished off your supply of cold ones without telling you. Now, that’s enough to make anyone mad, but thanks to these IoT based projects, you never have to deal with that disappointment again. These IoT projects will help you keep your fridge full.
Smart Beer Fridge
Using weight sensors you can measure the amount of beer in your beer fridge, your consumption over time and alerts you when it’s almost empty. Now you’ll never have to wonder if you have enough beer at home. Here’s an IoT project using a Wii Balance board and a Raspberry Pi to help you prototype your beverage IoT Solution.
IoT Enabled Homebrewing
Brew your own beer, you say? Well, there’s an IoT project for that too. Using a Tilt hydrometer, you can monitor the gravity of your beer as it ferments and the temperature of your brew. You can even set a trigger to send you a text when your beer has hit it’s final gravity. No beer is fresher than an IoT enabled beer.
Monitor and Mine Cryptocurrency
Wondering what all the racket about Blockchain and cryptocurrency is? Are you wanting to build your own cryptocurrency mining farm so that you can make a little side cash? With this IoT Project, you’ll learn what exactly you’ll need to build your mining farm, and monitor it online to make sure it’s operating as efficiently as possible.
Healthcare & Fitness
There’s a variety of Internet of Things healthcare devices coming out on the market these days. From monitoring your insulin levels to your blood pressure, you can keep an accurate record of and take action on your day-to-day health. Devices like Fitbit and the Apple Watch have made it easier to monitor you fitness activity, heart rate, and in some cases have even saved lives. The ability to collect all of your health data and visualize it in one place can help you achieve your health and fitness goals by giving you a clearer picture of what your health looks like in the moment and over time.
A fun way to get started collecting this IoT data is to use IFTTT to connect your health apps such as Fitbit, Strava and others to a real-time dashboard. For those with a little patience and some technical know-how, this is a fun tutorial on how to connect your Fitbit to an IoT platform such as Initial State.
If you don’t have an Internet connected healthcare device, you can get started with your health data logging by using a google sheet that’s connected to a real time dashboard. I actually do this to monitor my blood pressure over time. It’s easy to set up, and a beneficial record to be able to easily store and access.
Travel and Asset Monitoring
Whether you drive a Tesla and want to see your battery charging data or you own a fleet of cars or trucks and want to be able to monitor their status, there are plenty of IoT projects and solutions for you. It’s nice to be able to know that your precious cargo is safe, and is still where you left it last. Check out this tutorial on how to use a Raspberry Pi, GPS and cellular data to track anything, anywhere in the world (that you have a data or WiFi connection).
Weather and Nature
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the most popular IoT projects on the internet have to do with temperature, humidity, and weather. Whether you’re wanting to monitor the temperature of your server room, the temperature of different rooms in your house, give your garden it’s best chance of success, or you just want to pull weather data to see how it affects your project it’s easy to get started.
For Raspberry Pi users, there’s a large variety of different temperature sensors that you can use. We created a comprehensive guide on how to set up some of the most popular sensors for DIY projects on Medium. Otherwise, there are a ton of weather API’s available to pull from these days, but we like Dark Sky’s API because it’s free (and really easy to use)! Here’s a tutorial on how you can use python to quickly start monitoring weather data using Dark Sky’s api.
If you love plants but don’t necessarily have a green thumb then you’ll love this project by Seed Studios. In this tutorial, they show you how to quickly set up an IoT solution to monitor temperature and humidity to give your plants their best chance at life.