June 11, 2019


It’s a new era in our merry little household. For the first time in a number of years, one can confidently utter the word “Alexa” or “Google” without various devices scattered about binging and bonging while trying to be helpful.

The Amazon and Google ears have been decommissioned.

My husband and I have been working on little tech upgrades here and there and over the weekend he remarked, “it’d be really nice if we had one kind of computer with one service for the lights. I don’t want to talk to Google in here and Alexa in there and watch you haul around a Linux computer”.

We’ve decided to go all in on Homekit, Apple’s Home Automation platform. I know that some have had uneven experiences with Homekit but it has always been solid with us. The only reason we added Alexa and Google to the mix was so we could talk to thin air and have something happen.

“Hey Siri!” gives us this option as long as we have a iPhone or iPad within our shouting range. Since we always have our device on us, this is working for us.

When we first moved into the condo here in Chicago it was my intention for us to be an all Homekit home but then we started buying cheaper smart plugs that were only compatible with Alexa. I’ve been doing some network monitoring and the smart plugs are quite chatty with non-U.S. IP addresses. I don’t know why my smart plug feels the need to tattle around the world when I turn on a box fan, but it made me hyper aware of the security concerns around the Internet of Things.

I firmly believe Apple has the most secure offering in this arena.

Jamie had a decommissioned iPad Mini 2 that we have pressed into service as a Home Controller in the kitchen. I just need to find an older iOS device to play the same role in the bathroom, as we like music to play when we shower and the like, and then we’ll be golden. In the meanwhile we can use our phones.

I’m liking the doubling down on the Apple ecosystem. Believe it or not, it helps my focus for both personal and professional tasks. And for us, it just works.

And that’s all that matters to us.

Yumi Zouma.

Photo courtesy of Yumi Zouma’s website.

It’s been over a decade since I’ve really fallen in love with any music, but the New Zealand group Yumi Zouma has created some of the best music I’ve heard in decades.

I love this group. Give them a listen (link to Apple Music).