Computer interface to a multi-device IR remote control (or functional equiv)?

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In an attempt to have one remote control to control a suite of devices (TV,
 cable box, AVS, etc.) I got a logitech harmony some years ago.  Basically  
happy with it aside from some times the state of certain devices are not th
e state that the remote control thinks is should be.

Anyway, I am wondering if there is a universal remote (or just an IR box) t
hat I can connect my PC to (in some fashion) and send commands from the PC  
to the remote to do certain functions.
For me, ideally, is to write a set of functions in a scripting language to  
perform a set of actions, (simulate a set of button pushes) eg:
{
Turn on stereo
Adjust volume to 4
Select FM receiver
Tune to 98.6
Set turn off timer1 to 1 hour
Upon timeout of timer1, set volume to 2, turn off
}
PC to remote control link could be BT, some form of NFR, RF,  WiFI (stand a
lone device on the network),
 even a serial cable, am not particular.  just want to get the functionalit
y.

Am thinking of rolling my own by building the IR transmitter + BT interface
 and talk to it from my PC, or  a RPi.

I don't want to invest the time to develop this if there is something aroun
d that I can use/cobble together to make work, and build a better version l
ater.
Suggestions appreciated....
J

Re: Computer interface to a multi-device IR remote control (or functional equiv)?
On Wednesday, January 27, 2021 at 12:08:34 PM UTC-5, Three Jeeps wrote:
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V, cable box, AVS, etc.) I got a logitech harmony some years ago. Basically
 happy with it aside from some times the state of certain devices are not t
he state that the remote control thinks is should be.  
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 that I can connect my PC to (in some fashion) and send commands from the P
C to the remote to do certain functions.  
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o perform a set of actions, (simulate a set of button pushes) eg:  
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alone device on the network),  
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y.  
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ce and talk to it from my PC, or a RPi.  
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und that I can use/cobble together to make work, and build a better version
 later.  
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whoops - brain freeze, I should have typed Logitech Harmony not Rhapsody

Re: Computer interface to a multi-device IR remote control (or functional equiv)?
On a sunny day (Wed, 27 Jan 2021 09:08:24 -0800 (PST)) it happened Three Jeeps

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The general way is to create a leaning remote control.
I did that long ago by using a photo transistor connected to the PC par port  
and reading it in a fast loop and storing the samples in a file, named for each remote command.
Then for playback you play the file and toggle an IR diode as transmitter, also from the par port.
That works universally, sampling frequency must be high enough, these days any PC will be,
also works to record 433 MHz devices like car-keys etc if you have such a module, anything:
 http://panteltje.com/panteltje/newsflex/download.html#lremote
No parport? use some serial port pin... get a parport PCI card? Else Rasberry GPIO will do just as well.
So you hold the remote in front of the photo diode and press a button, save file say as on_off.
It MaY aLSo GivE YoU ACcEsS To tHe CAPITOL If ...
If you only have one type of device (protocol) to control and want to get a bit more sophisticated:
 http://panteltje.com/panteltje/pic/ir_pic/index.html

IIRC Linux has some IR commands,,,,never used it...

  

Re: Computer interface to a multi-device IR remote control (or functional equiv)?
On Wednesday, January 27, 2021 at 9:08:34 AM UTC-8, Three Jeeps wrote:
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The home theater types have solved (as is normal) 80% of this problem; "Bluetooth IR blaster"
is a good search term, for the device-end item.   As for the realtime control, a cell phone
app is one possibility, or a PC or even an Arduino should be able to handle it all.   Just
don't expect it to be seamless.   And beware, a pad/tablet/phone app isn't always
flexible or a durable goods solution....

The old X-10 systems had an RF (900 MHz?) device-end blaster that would work from their
dual IR/RF remotes, and also an RF receiver that converted the RF to
powerline messaging... I think.   I have played with those parts, but don't like the lock-in to X-10 hardware.

Re: Computer interface to a multi-device IR remote control (or functional equiv)?
On 1/27/2021 10:08 AM, Three Jeeps wrote:
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I wasn't fond of having to go online just to download device codes, etc.

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The problem is knowing *which* pulse trains (Ir codes) to send to each device.
The "value added" that these COTS devices have is that they have access to
a database of such information.  If you want to go that route, you will
need to *acquire* the information -- by LEARNINIG from your existing remote(s).

[If you don't have a remote for a particular device, you're kinda stuck]

Linux has their "lirc" project which does some of this and has a collection
of "user contributed" Ir device codes.

The concept dates back to the days of PDAs -- but with the same sort of
Ir codes database issue.

There exist prepackaged "LED-on-a-string" devices (typically supplied with
appliances like DVRs to let the DVR "talk" to a dumb VCR -- by positioning the
LED near the VCR's detector).

The more common need is for an Ir detector that can talk to a PC (for
PCs that aren't so equipped).  IIRC, you can find these packaged in
small USB fobs so they are unobtrusively connected to your PC.

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