Internet Searches for Home Automation
About.com is one of your best sources for learning about home automation, and you can search About.com with your specific question. Narrow your search by adding additional terms to search for. For example, if you want to know about dimmer switches in home automation, don’t just search for "dimmer switches" but instead search for "Z-Wave in-wall dimmers" (or substitute other terms like INSTEON or X-10 in place of Z-Wave). Your search results will list manufacturers of dimmer switches, dimmer specifications, where you can buy them, and so on.
Look for links on the About.com pages that provide additional information on specific topics. If you’re unable to find what you’re looking for on About.com, additional information about home automation is plentiful through Internet search.
Home Automation Videos
Youtube.com is one of the best sources for how-to videos on virtually everything under the sun, and that includes home automation. Doing a search for home automation returns over 8,000 videos on how to install products. You can narrow your search down to Z-Wave dimmers and expect to see roughly two dozen videos on how to install one.
Books On Home Automation
Finding good books on home automation can be somewhat challenging. Part of the problem is that by the time a book is published, the technology has advanced and the book is outdated. Many books talk about X-10 even though X-10 is quickly being made obsolete by newer technologies like INSTEON, Z-Wave, and ZigBee. These books that can provide some basics:
- Absolute Beginner's Guide to Home Automation, by Mark Edward Soper
- Insteon: Smarthomes For Everyone: The Do-It-Yourself Home Automation Technology, by Matthew Strebe
- Smart Homes For Dummies (compare prices), by Danny Briere and Pat Hurley
Probably one of the best ways to learn more about home automation is by following one of the many existing home automation blogs. If you’re unfamiliar with what a blog is, think of it as an ongoing discussion where everyone gets to comment. Home automation is a community and you can pretty much bet that someone else in the community has already encountered the same problem or question you have. Search on your favorite engine for "home automation blog" or "Z-wave blog" or other similar subject you’re interested in, and you’ll find an entire community just waiting to help you with your home automation questions.