Hello e14 community. My proposal for the design challenge is for a smart thermostat, but that sounds really boring, so I call it The UnCoStat for The Unnecessarily Complex Thermostat!. I have been thinking about the ideal thermostat since our 20 year old programmable thermostat broke last spring. We bought a new one, but neither my wife nor I am completely happy with it. I have looked at a lot of other thermostats but nothing is exactly what we want. Once I started contemplating what the ideal thermostat could be I started coming up with lots of features I'd like to see. The PSoC4 Smarter Life Design Challenge happily coincided with the thermostat problem swirling around my brain. Last week I found out I had been selected so now I am on the hook to actually do something.


The desires driving the UnCoStat are:

  • Easy programming. Our old t-stat had lots of buttons so you could display and change any individual program in a few seconds. The new t-stat (and most non-touchscreen units I've found) require cycling through all the programs every time a change is made. The UnCoStat will have several buttons on the front face and will be able to change any program or setting in as few button clicks as possible.
  • Humidity Control. Often air-conditioning is used as much for humidity control as temperature. When the dew point is above 60°F most people find it uncomfortable, regardless of the temperature. The UnCoStat will regulate humidity or dew point within certain temperature bounds or vice-versa.
  • Zone Control. The UnCoStat will connect to remote sensors and be capable of controlling temperature based on average, extreme or a subset of temperature reading. So, for example, it will use the bedroom temperature from midnight to 6:00am and living room temperature during the day.
  • Vacation Hold. The UnCoStat will have a vacation setting with either a fixed set point or an alternate program that can be invoked for a period of time or until a certain date and time.
  • Remote Control. The UnCoStat will report status and accept programming commands remotely.
  • Data Logging. Both my wife and I are data junkies.

I originally posted my 'Hello e14' message in the discussion forum instead of as a blog (http://www.element14.com/community/thread/27986). whoops. I'll post updates as I go here.