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Automating the Information Centre

In my last post I talked about setting up an information display in my kitchen. I left off with some musing thoughts about having the information centre automatically turn itself on in the morning. In my endeavours to do exactly that, it led me down quite the rabbit hole of problems I didn't anticipate.

Getting it to turn on and off on its own was fairly straightforward. A capability of pretty much any modern TV is its ability to be controlled via commands send over the HDMI cable. This is known as Consumer Electronics Control, or CEC. If you have a 4th generation Apple TV, you've no doubt seen this in action. When you click any button on the Apple remote, the TV is automatically turned on and switched over to the right input.

Since the Raspberry Pi connects over HDMI to the TV, it has the ability to send such commands, with the use of a library called libCEC. Installing it is dead simple -- there is a guide specifically for compiling and installing it on a Raspberry Pi. Deci…

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