Adam Piekarski, upon seeing a product that can make hot drinks on command via a smartphone, decided to build his own “Wi-Fi Kettle.”
Although it costs much less than the commercial version, this device still lets the user brew a hot drink without getting up from the couch. Pierkarski is “delighted with the results — many cups of tea have been brewed and drank daily :).” It’s always good to see a “hack” that can actually be useful in real life!
The build uses a Wi-Fi-enabled (and separately powered) Raspberry Pi stuffed inside a power supply with a relay board. This board, rated at a hefty 250 VAC and 10 amps, switches power to the teapot. Everything is fused together with hot glue, and although Pierkarski is somewhat self-deprecating about this aspect of the project, the results look quite good. Besides, if it works, no one ever needs to see inside your enclosure anyway!
In operation, the teapot (or kettle) has to be filled beforehand, and the manual switch is pressed to allow it to automatically heat up. Interestingly, Pierkarski didn’t write code for this, but instead remotely logs on to the ‘Pi and runs a Python script through the power of Linux.