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Home Automation and Security for the Macintosh.

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Here's a page for XTension user websites or stories !

Here's some pics from MacWorld 98, around the HA world.

Here's something about the latest MacWorld '99

At the Feb'99 Home Automation Show in Orlando.

Others write about XTension.

March 2007 MacWorld Online review !

MacTech Magazine review of Home Automation - June 2007

Andy Ihnatko loves XTension

My Mac Magazine prefers XTension -- December 2007
David Price says: "XTension was my favorite software due to its flexibility and power."

Featured in MacAddict Twice !
May 2007 -- "Command Your Mac"
July 1997 -- "Become a Control Freak at Home"
also page 45, June 97 MacAddict:
----Article by Kathy Tafel titled "25 Mouth-watering Gizmos".

Wireless speakers and XTension !
In the May '98 issue of Popular Home Automation, Dave Weatherwax, a PC user chooses XTension to announce messages and control which speakers are turned on !

MacDirectory Christmas Gift Basket 1997.,
"Christmas Gift suggestions 1997"

The Practical Mac says they like us: !
"This is the stuff that technogeeks drool over."

MacDirectory October Product Review Says XTension is a Best Buy !
XTension: your passport to the future

Chuck Shotton writes :
Chuck's Treehouse.
Remote Server Management with X-10

Sept/Oct 96 issue of Home Automator, about Michael's system.

Popular Home Automation March 97. Mac home automation on cover.

Here are some candid words that have been said:

.... I have been running XTension for my home now for that past 4 months with a Centris 650 and it blows away the Enerlogic that I had been using in every respect... speed, reliability, and programmability. We will eventually be converting all our Enerlogic clients (about 12-15) over to Mac/XTension when we get some time.
Thanks for a great product and all the support. (12/98)
There was an attempted break in of our detached garage last night at about 1:30 AM. The household awoke to a screaming siren. The security system was installed by the previous owners of the house (not X10) and proved its worth by scaring off the thief. I knew it was the garage door that was opened but what really made us nervous was not knowing if there was anyone inside the garage. I didn't venture in, I left that honour to the Police who responded very quickly. Nobody was in there but it would have been nice to know before going in to check.

What's been a cute automation hobby so far with an old Mac,a few lamp and appliance modules, and some light switches put together for simple lifestyle enjoyment quickly turns to a more serious security project after an event like last night.

What I really like about XTension and X10 is the low cost way of adding motion detectors in the garage and around the house to bolster security and get feedback. I know there are some of you who have very elegant situations set up but up to now, around my place, home automation has been "Dad's" hobby that the other members of the household tolerate. There's a lot more home automation fans in the house tonight.
What can I say ?? U simply blow me away. I am doing MIS support in an advertising agency and I do use a lot of Macs and I have come across some pretty fantastic tech support; (from others) but you simply, simply blow them away! I have never, never had a web page amended just because of questions I asked and in such a record time too!! (Singapore)
I am designing a house for my family and I and I want to include some Home Automation capability. I found your website through a topic search. Your explanation of the technical issues and the interface to Macs, etc. is outstanding. I appreciate the work you put into educating the public about this technology. Certainly you are selling the software product, but your efforts at explaining how it works are refreshing. Its what commerce on the web should be - more than just pushing the product. Thanks for your educational and well-executed website. (DGR 11/97)
XTension is useable enough out of the box that I started making things right away. In the process I saw that I was operating at a superficial level (which is fine but I wanted more!). So I read the manual, gathered info from your website, absorbed the discussions on the mail list, tried new things, failed at some, suceeded at others. Since the parts of XTension all fit together and make sense, it has been very rewarding. The reason for the failures become obvious as the system is reexamined. The sucesses are rewarding because for one, things work, and for another, they work because I figured it out. I'm having a blast! The frustration level is fairly low because the system does what it says it does. There are few dead ends, wrong road signs, or things that just don't work.

So, thanks for getting the Mac back on top with XTension. I await your future developments. Now I justs need to get everything working and get my regular life back!!!
(RL 5/97)
I researched for over a month on newsgroups, the web and catalogs before deciding. There's nothing close to XTension. In the Mac world there's a few other things to look at, but nothing as solid and advanced. .... It even seems better than the X10 protocol it is living on top of. It's as if it breathes new life into something that is from the seventies. It's like Erasure doing Abba songs.
(CS 5/97)
I am pretty happy with it in spite of the few bugs I have found. I never mind finding bugs in a product as long as the developer is willing to work on them and feed me fixes. No programmer is infallible.
(CR 5/97)
My wife and I recently spent a weekend away from home..it was nice to receive an occasional page from XTension letting us know that the house was o.k. and that the tool-borrowers weren't into the garage!
(JA 4/97)
Need I say much more? Thanx a million for getting me upgraded. You folks are certainly the most responsive I've dealt with in ages. I hope my customers feel half as supported.
(KK 4/97)
Not only will I be using XTension for home automation, but I plan to press it into service for an elaborate neighborhood Halloween production that we do every year for free. The emphasis of this production is illusion and technology. In the production, my PowerMac will be controlling everything. Stage lighting dimming in and out, lighting effects and lasers, digital video (Quicktime) being pumped to different locations for effects, 16 bit - 44 KHz soundtracks, fog machines, seat vibration transducers, and computer voice synthesis. It is pretty much a year-round preparation. X10 technology has helped us in the past but we are hoping to automate the production as much as possible to increase efficiency and reduce the time that people wait in line. This is where XTension fits in. We have built-up quite a reputation and enjoy hoards of people (several hundred last year) coming on Halloween.
(MC 3/97)
I've just started using XTension for the Mac, with the Activehome controller, and thus far, I'm impressed! In particular, Sand Hill Engineering, maker of XTension, has truly astounding tech support, IMHO. I was getting my (in retrospect quite stupid) questions answered pronto, thoughtfully, and in one case by e-mail sent at 11:47 p.m. the same day!
(DG 8/97)
The XTension software from Sandhill Engineering is an incredibly easy, yet powerful piece of home automation software. It supports the major X10 computer interfaces, can manage all sorts of timed events and complex collections of devices, and most importantly is completely scriptable. That means you don't have to rely on some hokie scripting language built into the software (like some of the Unix tools), rigid user interfaces (like all the Win95 products I tried), and you can EASILY integrate it with any other Mac application using scripting tools like AppleScript, Frontier, HyperCard, or even FileMaker. Floorplans, custom lists, and remote control from any Mac on your net are just a few of the features.
(CS 8/97)
I've gotten my first description of our Home Automation system up on my website, and thought I'd offer you the URL if you would like to link to it : http://www.techconsulting.com/sean/Essays/hasys.html
I'll be editing this page as time goes on to include the new features I implement.
(SM 8/97)

Copyright 2007, Sand Hill Engineering Inc. All rights reserved.

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Last modified: April 29, 2007
Michael Ferguson, webmaster@shed.com