IFTTT What?

Ever heard of IFTTT programming?  It’s okay if you haven’t, its pretty nerdy stuff.  Whether you know it or not, it's already a part of your life.  It stands for “If this, then this.”  Known as event-based programming, it is simply when one event triggers one or more automatic events.  Think of how when you open your car door, the interior light comes on without you having to do anything. If you get this, you get IFTTT.  The fact is, engineers have been using this way of thinking for the consumer for decades when they added some sort of automatic feature to a new kitchen appliance, car, TV, etc.    


Now, smart homes are giving people the ability to program IFTTT events to their home!  To me, this is a huge upgrade to what we’ve been doing for TV and music, as it makes the home’s electronics perform around you without having to get out your phone, remote control, or anything else.  You just live, and the home reacts.

One of the first things most of us do when we approach our home is open the garage door.  We can now use this event to program an IFTTT string like “If garage door opens….” And add whatever we want.  Most commonly, we would want to disarm the security system, change the room temperature to a comfort setting, turn on the lights, start Pandora in the kitchen, and maybe put the news headlines on in the living room TV.  You can even take this a step farther by making the first event as your phone joining your wifi.  This can trigger the garage door opening, and everything else subsequent.

Other IFTTT programming can include the last few to do’s before bed.  Instead of walking around the home doing 10 things, what if the first thing you do is arm the alarm to “stay”?  You can now program that one event to turn off all of the lights, lock all deadbolts, ensure the garage door is closed, turn off all the TV’s and music, and drop the thermostat a couple of degrees.  No more pajama walk.  And believe me, this is just the beginning.           

- Michael