ThingSpeak Plus Third-party Hardware – an Alternative to ioBridge Hardware

In 2008, when ioBridge launched the IO-204 web gateway for the Internet of Things, there were very few hardware devices available to easily and cost-effectively build connected products. The Internet of Things has taken off with a wide array of companies now offering hardware devices to prototype and develop Internet of Things products and solutions.

In 2010, ioBridge launched, an open data platform for the Internet of Things. From the beginning, ThingSpeak was designed to be hardware agnostic and is now used by thousands of people to aggregate data from sensors and to control things using the ThingSpeak App, TalkBack. With ThingSpeak there are many hardware choices and the ThingSpeak tutorials provide examples of hardware platforms that talk to ThingSpeak including the Arduino, Spark Core, and mbed to name a few.

ThingSpeak IoT Platform

ioBridge has sold hardware on our store over the past six years as a means to demonstrate and enable our software. Now that so many hardware alternatives are available that work well with our ThingSpeak service, we have decided to stop selling hardware on our web store to refocus our effort on making it even easier to use third-party hardware with ThingSpeak. Stay tuned for more information.

ioBridge customers who have purchased ioBridge gateways can continue to use the dashboard service, but we recommend that new customers consider using ThingSpeak with a third-party hardware platform of your choice.

Send Data to ThingSpeak with Arduino

Do you already have an Arduino with an Ethernet Shield? Connect some sensors and send the data to ThingSpeak with this simple Arduino Sketch.

Arduino Ethernet ThingSpeakOnce the data is collected by ThingSpeak, we have a number of ThingSpeak Apps that let you do something with it. Use ThingTweet to update Twitter if your Christmas Tree needs watered. Use React and TalkBack to control your thermostat. Use TweetControl to control a global network of lights!

[via ThingSpeak Tutorials]

Introducing TimeControl – Set Schedules for ioBridge Widgets

By using ThingSpeak’s TimeControl, you can set schedules for any of your ioBridge Widgets. This makes it possible to turn on your lights every day at 4pm. TimeControl allows for recurring schedules and one time controls set to a specific date and time.

ThingSpeak TimeControl Examples

ThingSpeak TimeControl Features

  • Recurring weekly schedules
  • One time scheduled actions
  • Fuzzy times – trigger an action at a random number of minutes around a scheduled time
  • Interface with any web service API


Getting Started

We have created a tutorial on how to scheduled ioBridge Widgets with the the ThingSpeak TimeControl service. This will help you understand how the ThingSpeak platform and ioBridge Widgets connect together.

[via ThingSpeak Community]

Christmas Lights Synchronized Around the World to Twitter, Powered by the Internet of Things

For the third holiday season in a row, the CheerLights project is gearing up. The idea behind CheerLights is to show that we are all connected by synchronizing the color of lights around the world. Christmas lights are a staple around the holidays and with Internet-connected lights, the color of your lights matches the color of everyone else’s lights.

It has been a real treat watching this project evolve as more and more people add lights… and other things. Things like Android and iPhone apps that check the latest color of CheerLights, an old Commodore 64, and Christmas trees.

To control the lights around the world, send a Tweet mentioning @CheerLights and a color. The command is processed by ioBridge’s ThingSpeak platform and distributed to all of the lights listening to the CheerLights API.

@CheerLights I am dreaming of a White Christmas

Another powerful aspect of the CheerLights project is that is shows off what is possible with the emerging Internet of Things. With a single message sent via a social network like Twitter, 1000’s of objects around the world are in sync with each other. Lights are connected by many types of controllers, such as Arduino, ioBridge, Philips, and the Raspberry Pi. This project is only possible through the Internet and the coordination of developers around the world.

Learn how to join the project at

We are all connected…

[via CheerLights]

TIME Magazine: Going From Twitter Toasters to Manufacturers

, a contributor from, covered our social toaster that I created back in 2008. But, Jacob took the story a few steps further and explained what might happen as more objects get connected. He also talks about FeedandGo, a mobile device controlled pet feeder, and iAquaLink, a pool control system that updates you on its status through an app. Both of these examples are taking the seeds of our technology planted in 2008 and taken beyond the novelty to real-world implementation.

@mytoaster may seem strange, but in reality it’s just another example in a widening group of household objects that use social media to make our lives easier. In addition to @mytoaster, there’s a plant that tweets when it needs to be watered and a laundry machine that tweets whenever a load is finished. It’s this concept of an inanimate object giving updates on its activities that interested @mytoaster’s inventor.

Another aspect of the article in TIME, covers the interest in what are things are doing. Imagine using a search engine to find your keys or find out if someone is home at your house by intertwining messages from things along with friends and family. Not all of this data needs to be public – this is why we created ThingSpeak and like the direction that DuckDuckGo is going with search.

Here’s Hans Scharler at the Connected World Conference with @mytoaster and many other connected gadgets and examples of our technology created by our partners:

Hans Scharler at Connected World

The modern “Twitter Toaster” uses the IO-201 Wi-Fi and a power sensor to detect if the toaster is in operation or not. You also get the side benefit of calculating power consumption by measuring the duration of usage.

Read the full article at, “Tweeting Toaster Has More Followers Than You”.

[via TIME]