Moose Jaw homeowner lets you control Christmas lights display
Ryan Brazeal created a Christmas lights display people can control using tablets and smartphones
When the time came for Ryan Brazeal to string up the Christmas lights this year, he decided it would be more fun to let the public dictate what it looks like.
The Moose Jaw homeowner created a display that allows people driving by his house to control the lights using their tablets and smartphones.
"We have eight different zones — all individually controllable that the users can play around with," Brazeal said.
Anyone with internet access can go log on to Brazeal's website and access the lights.
Brazeal, the Geomatics Program Head at SaskPolytech, created the project with his six-, eight-, and 10-year-old daughters. The idea came from a "light bulb" revelation.
"I think we were gone for the night or something and we made the statement, 'Oh, we forgot to unplug the Christmas lights,'" Brazeal said. "And just sort of half joking [his youngest daughter] said, 'it would be cool if you could control the light via the iPad.'"
He said more than 50 people have logged in to control his lights in the past few days.
"All of sudden, we back out of the driveway and the whole family looks at each other like, 'did you just turn on the lights?' " he said. "It could be the neighbour across the street or it could be somebody somewhere else in the world."
Technically, you can control the lights from anywhere in the world, but there is not a real-time video on the website. Brazeal was at a hockey game when he decided to check out his lights display on his phone.
"I would log in to the web page and look and all of a sudden some of the zones would turn on live and start blinking and things like that," he said. "It would just kind of make me smile."
The lights display is also a project done as part of Junior Pi School, an after-school program Brazeal is getting started to introduce children to electronics and computing projects.
Brazeal said he's very proud his family was able to do the project together.