Monitoring office air quality using a DIY air quality sensor

My colleague Andreas Brain recently approached me with an interesting project he heard of: monitoring the air quality using a DIY air quality sensor described at luftdaten.info. I could not resist and had to order all components. The arrived yesterday (fresh from China, thx aliexpress) and a few hours later (around 18 to be exact) we have 2 new air quality sensors online. One is at home, outside, and the other one is currently at our office, inside, on the 4th floor. It does not look very exciting, but works perfectly. Thx go out to the team of OKLab Stuttgart! Continue reading

yAlexa Technical Architecture & Update for our Alexa-based prototype

Besides cleaning up our new labs space, we’ve been pretty productive this week and I want to give you a quick update on the progress with Voice User Interfaces. yAlexa (see previous post), our prototype around Hybris as a Service and Amazon Alexa, is taking shape. This week was devoted to adding a demo UI for keeping track of the voice actions directed at alexa. In addition, I’ve created a technical architecture that I quickly wanted to share. Continue reading

Fun with Alexa & Hybris as a Service: yalexa

It’s a shame I’ve not written earlier about this. We’ve got Amazon’s Alexa and also Google Home available at Hybris Labs in Munich, but I’ve had so much other things going on, that I just could not concentrate a lot on this. Today,  I finally had a few hours play a bit more with Amazon’s Alexa. While I need to do more with Google Home, I’ve tried both to some degree now. I find the overall programming and configuration simpler, although Amazon is also trying to totally lock you in of course with the Lambda functions on EC2 – but you have a choice and my choice was to use my own Cloudfoundry based backend and YaaS APIs to implement the business logic. Continue reading

General Update & Final Architecture Diagram for Expose

It’s been a while since I wrote about expose, but finally I am sitting at the Munich airport again, which is my favorite time to write blog posts. From a technical point of view, expose is in the final phase of being polished. We’ve worked with the designers at SNK to create great user interfaces, ironed out a few bugs here and there and are currently thinking of two showrooms (Munich and New York) to install this prototype. While these discussions and the details will need a few more weeks, I think technically this prototype is locked-down and done. So it’s time to take a final look at it and wrap it all up. Continue reading