Create a scene (multiple devices on/off with one command)

One of the biggest uses of HA is to control multiple lights from one switch, to create a mood or “scene” in HA speak. There are a LOT of ways to do this, some of which don't even involve Indigo (using INSTEON to directly connect devices, for instance). In this How-to, we'll describe how to create a scene in Indigo that can be used for any type of device using any technology, without using any features that are specific to a technology. There are two slightly different scenarios listed below: one that uses an INSTEON ControlLinc as the controller, and another that uses an X10 PalmPad. They both use INSTEON AND X10 devices for illustration purposes, but as you'll see they are interchangeable. This How-to level of difficulty is Simple. A more complex How-To that restores the device states is also available: note that it requires 4.0 Pro or better.

What you need to start

  • Some devices to control (typically lights, but could also be devices such as window shade controllers)
  • Something to trigger the scene (typically a switch or remote)

INSTEON ControlLinc Scenario Overview

Here's the scenario we're going to address in this How-to: Joe has some nice wall sconce lights in his TV room that are controlled by a SwitchLinc and a table lamp connected through an ICON Lamp Module. He also has just installed some X10 controllable window shades (an X10 ON command lowers them, an X10 OFF command raises them in this example). He has a ControLinc (but could just as easily be a KeypadLinc, RemoteLinc, etc.) that he wants to set up so that when he hits Button 1 On, the sconces dim to 20%, the table lamp turns off, and the window shades go down. When he hits Button 1 Off, the sconces brighten to 100%, the table lamp turns on, and the window shades go up. This way, when he want's to watch a movie, the room gets dark enough to really enjoy the film, but still has a little light from the sconces.

Steps to create this scenario

So, how would Joe accomplish the task above? It's actually pretty simple - after making sure that he had the devices defined in Indigo, he'd just follow these steps:

Create On Trigger Action

So, now we need to create 2 trigger actions so that when Joe presses the right buttons on his ControLinc, the actions listed in the scenario above happen correctly. The first one will be for the On command:

  1. Select TRIGGERS in the outline view on the left side (we're going to make these
  2. Click the New… button above the trigger list
  3. Name the trigger “Start watching a movie”
  4. Select INSTEON Command Received from the Type: popup
  5. Click the Device radio button beside From: if not already checked
  6. Select the name of the ControLinc from the device popup next to the word Device
  7. Select On on the popup next to Received:, and Button/Group 1 on the popup next to that
  8. That specifies that this trigger will fire when the Button 1 On command is received from the ControLinc - now select the Actions tab (you can skip Condition for this example)
  9. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  10. Select Set Brightness from the Action: popup
  11. Select the device that represents the sconces from the Device: popup
  12. Enter 20 in the text field next to Amount:
  13. That takes care of the sconces, but what about the other lights and the blinds - click on the Add New button at the lower left side of the dialog - don't worry, the one you just created isn't gone, it's just hidden - you can see all actions by clicking the Show All button and you can cycle through all actions using the Prev and Next buttons next to Show:, and you can see from the text that we're now on action 2 of 2.
  14. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  15. Select Turn Off from the Action: popup
  16. Select the device that represents the table lamp from the Device: popup
  17. Now, add one more for the blinds by clicking on the Add New button again
  18. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  19. Select Turn On from the Action: popup
  20. Select the device that represents the blinds from the Device: popup

That's it! So, to recap, what we did was create a trigger action that will fire when Button 1 ON on the ControLinc is pressed. It executes 3 actions: set's the brightness of the sconces to 20%, turns off the table lamp, and lowers the blinds by sending them an ON command. So, how do we reverse the process? Read on…

Create Off Trigger Action

As you may have guessed, we need to create another trigger like the one above, except it reverses the process:

  1. Select TRIGGERS in the outline view on the left side (we're going to make these
  2. Click the New… button above the trigger list
  3. Name the trigger “Stop watching a movie”
  4. Select INSTEON Command Received from the Type: popup
  5. Click the Device radio button beside From: if not already checked
  6. Select the name of the ControLinc from the device popup next to the word Device
  7. Select Off on the popup next to Received:, and Button/Group 1 on the popup next to that
  8. That specifies that this trigger will fire when the Button 1 Off command is received from the ControLinc - now select the Actions tab (again, skip Condition for this example)
  9. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  10. Select Set Brightness from the Action: popup
  11. Select the device that represents the sconces from the Device: popup
  12. Enter 100 in the text field next to Amount:
  13. Click on the Add New button to add another action
  14. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  15. Select Turn On from the Action: popup
  16. Select the device that represents the table lamp from the Device: popup
  17. Now, add one more for the blinds by clicking on the Add New button again
  18. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  19. Select Turn Off from the Action: popup
  20. Select the device that represents the blinds from the Device: popup

X10 PalmPad Scenario Overview

Here's the scenario we're going to address in this How-to: Joe has some nice wall sconce lights in his TV room that are controlled by an SwitchLinc and a table lamp connected through an ICON Lamp Module. He also has just installed some X10 controllable window shades (an X10 ON command lowers them, an X10 OFF command raises them in this example). He has a PalmPad that he wants to set up so that when he hits Button 1 On, the sconces dim to 20%, the table lamp turns off, and the window shades go down. When he hits Button 1 Off, the sconces brighten to 100%, the table lamp turns on, and the window shades go up. This way, when he want's to watch a movie, the room gets dark enough to really enjoy the film, but still has a little light from the sconces. I'm assuming that the PalmPad is set to house code “P” and the unit code slider is set to 1-8. So, Button 1 is equal to “P1”.

Steps to create this scenario

So, how would Joe accomplish the task above? It's actually pretty simple - after making sure that he had the devices defined in Indigo, he'd just follow these steps:

Create On Trigger Action

So, now we need to create 2 trigger actions so that when Joe presses the right buttons on his ControLinc, the actions listed in the scenario above happen correctly. The first one will be for the On command:

  1. Select TRIGGERS in the outline view on the left side (we're going to make these
  2. Click the New… button above the trigger list
  3. Name the trigger “Start watching a movie”
  4. Select X10/RF Command Received from the Type: popup
  5. Click the Address radio button below From:
  6. Select the address “P1” from the two popups beside Address
  7. Select On on the popup next to Received:,
  8. That specifies that this trigger will fire when the X10 P1 On command is received from the PalmPad - now select the Actions tab (you can skip Condition for this example)
  9. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  10. Select Set Brightness from the Action: popup
  11. Select the device that represents the sconces from the Device: popup
  12. Enter 20 in the text field next to Amount:
  13. That takes care of the sconces, but what about the other lights and the blinds - click on the Add New button at the lower left side of the dialog - don't worry, the one you just created isn't gone, it's just hidden - you can see all actions by clicking the Show All button and you can cycle through all actions using the Prev and Next buttons next to Show:, and you can see from the text that we're now on action 2 of 2.
  14. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  15. Select Turn Off from the Action: popup
  16. Select the device that represents the table lamp from the Device: popup
  17. Now, add one more for the blinds by clicking on the Add New button again
  18. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  19. Select Turn On from the Action: popup
  20. Select the device that represents the blinds from the Device: popup

That's it! So, to recap, what we did was create a trigger action that will fire when Button 1 ON on the PalmPad is pressed. It executes 3 actions: set's the brightness of the sconces to 20%, turns off the table lamp, and lowers the blinds by sending them an ON command. So, how do we reverse the process? Read on…

Create Off Trigger Action

As you may have guessed, we need to create another trigger like the one above, except it reverses the process:

  1. Select TRIGGERS in the outline view on the left side (we're going to make these
  2. Click the New… button above the trigger list
  3. Name the trigger “Stop watching a movie”
  4. Select X10/RF Command Received from the Type: popup
  5. Click the Address radio button below From:
  6. Select the address “P1” from the two popups beside Address
  7. Select Off on the popup next to Received:,
  8. That specifies that this trigger will fire when the X10 P1 Off command is received from the PalmPad - now select the Actions tab (again, skip Condition for this example)
  9. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  10. Select Set Brightness from the Action: popup
  11. Select the device that represents the sconces from the Device: popup
  12. Enter 100 in the text field next to Amount:
  13. Click on the Add New button to add another action
  14. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  15. Select Turn On from the Action: popup
  16. Select the device that represents the table lamp from the Device: popup
  17. Now, add one more for the blinds by clicking on the Add New button again
  18. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup
  19. Select Turn Off from the Action: popup
  20. Select the device that represents the blinds from the Device: popup

Congratulations!

You've now created two scenes for Joe's TV room: one he'll use when watching a movie and another that lightens up the room completely. As you can probably see, there are other things you can do to make this scene even more useful: if you have an Infrared receiver, you could program a button on your current IR remote to trigger the actions. If you have an Infrared transmitter, you could add extra actions that would set your A/V equipment up so that it's ready to watch a movie. The possibilities boggle the mind!

A word about Action Groups

In a simple trigger action, there is probably only one action that you want to take. In the scenario that we just finished, though, we have several actions we want to perform (adjust 2 different lights and the window shades). Indigo let's you specify multiple actions in the “Create New Trigger Action” dialog, and that's how we did it here. If, however, you had multiple ways you wanted to trigger these actions (besides just buttons on a single ControLinc), then you would implement the actions in Action Groups. Feel free to read up on those at your leisure!

scenes.txt · Last modified: 2019/01/25 22:53 (external edit)
 

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