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Get texts and listen in when your door is opened with RoomAlert

Students: Worried that someone will creep into your room when they shouldn’t? You might RoomAlert – a nifty piece of Lo-Fi smart home security.

Inventor Luke Landraka posted details of the security solution on the Instructables website after creating it for his freshman engineering final project and says it’s suitable for anyone with general soldering skills.

With many people living in shared accommodation into their 30s thanks to high rents and low wages, it could be useful to more than just students.

RoomAlert will text you to listen in on uninvited guests
RoomAlert will text you to listen in on uninvited guests

“We were told to build something that used electronics to improve the life of the public,” said Luke. “RoomAlert was the product I made that was designed for life in the dorms but could be adapted for other situations.”

The device is attached above a door, and a rocker switch senses when the door has been opened, passing a signal to a small Arduino computer. This communicates with a small phone device called GSM Shield that sends a text message to the owner.

When the door closes the rocker switch flips back and resets the system. The Arduino device is constantly pinging both the rocker switch to find out its position, and the GSM Shield to find out if a call has been received.

“Once the user receives the text message notifying him that his room has been entered he is able to call RoomAlert and it will use a microphone with an amplifier to listen in on whatever is going on in the room,” Luke added.

As well as soldering skills, you’ll also need an understanding of the popular Arduino hobby computer and some patience to make the security device. “It is a great project for those trying to get started with electronics and is a ton of fun,” he said. 

The device could be a cheaper option than alternatives such as the Archos SmartHome and Neoji.


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