My wife and I purchased a home in 2017 that was only a few years old. The home came with a Control4 system installed during construction, and it appeared that the first owners had not really done anything at all with the system. Starting on day 1 of home ownership, the system was difficult to use, we were locked out of several portions of our own system, and doing even the simplest tasks appeared to require a call to the local Control4 dealer. It wasn’t friendly; it wasn’t approachable; it wasn’t maintainable by me; and, most importantly, it seemed designed to do nothing other than generate frustration for me and income to the local dealer. It didn’t feel like what an average person would ever want in their home. It felt like what a wealthy person would install and then hire someone else to maintain.

It took only a matter of days for me to realize that Control4 was not what I wanted in a smart-home system.  I have a particular vision for my smart-home system: I want it to work; I want it to not break the bank; I want it to not send all of my data across the internet; and, most importantly, I want to forget that it exists. I want something seamless enough that I forget that there is an entire server closet in the basement that is necessary for the damn thing to function.

SmartishHome.com is primarily a blog detailing my work, frustrations, successes and failures when it comes to wrestling my Control4 system into submission, replacing components where necessary, and owning a smart-home that meets my definitions of “smart.” Along the way, I will review components, give commentary about the smart-home and home-automation industry from the perspective of a common home-owner, and offer guides on things that are perhaps more about general home gadgets instead of strictly being about home-automation. Everything is on the table.

I’m not a software developer, a bleeding-edge adopter, or even particularly handy around the house. I am, however, tech-literate (most of the time), know how to google, and am willing to make myself look like an idiot by publishing my questionable code for the world to see. With any luck, I will help out some other Control4 owners looking to escape their local dealer or perhaps just help some other “smart” home owners become actual smart-home owners. At the very least, perhaps we can all become smartish-home owners together.