PC tracking for presence?


(Bill Kearney) #1

Is there any windows software known to be useful for tracking activity? As in, someone sitting at a PC, using it (presumably mouse|keyboard) and having that be used as one variable in determining presence?

Motion alone isn’t enough, as most timeout and aren’t intended at detecting a sedentary individual. I’m looking at considering a number of contributing variables as a means to better detect presence. No one variable is going to be enough. There’s layers, time of day, amount of motion, related schedules, etc. Someone using the keyboard & mouse, however, is a pretty good indicator that someone is present. Granted, cats on keyboards could likewise be a factor but, again, I’m not looking for just one variable alone.


Pressure pad under the seat or chair mat.


(Bill Kearney) #4

Right, there’s more than one way to skin the cat here. I’ve seen the other threads regarding sensors attached to chairs and such.

That’s not what I’m asking here. I’m specifically looking to find Windows-based software for PCs to detect activity for means to contribute to presence detection.

I don’t expect any ‘one way’ to be entirely effective. I’m looking at several contributing mechanisms to build a presence profile of some sort. Which would itself vary based on time of day, home/away, armed/disarmed, etc.

I’m specifically looking to AVOID anything that can’t be done passively. As in, no dongles, phones, gizmos or other tchotchkes that would have be physically carried or moved on a person.

(Bobby) #5

Plug the PC into a power meter outlet and monitor power. Use in conjunction with a uDTH and you can use that with anything you want as a contact sensor. Or use a virtual presence switch. I do both so let me know if you need more details.

(Bill Kearney) #6

Power management wouldn’t really be ideal, as PCs get called to action for all kinds of things that might not be directly related to a person being present. Updates being one such example, but any other longer term or remotely triggered tasks would likewise come into play. At least the ones here that I’d use for tracking presence wouldn’t be suitable for using power consumption as an indicator.


There are lots of activity trackers which are used to monitor employees working at home and track keystrokes and mouse usage and pretty much anything else you can think of.

What you do then depends on how technical you are. If you don’t want to do any programming, find one that sends alerts by either email or text and pick those up in IFTTT and use them to turn on a virtual presence In SmartThings. :sunglasses:

So it’s easy, just depends on how much of the work you want to do yourself.

(Bill Kearney) #8

I’d love to avoid reinventing the wheel, thus asking here if anyone’s integrated any of them with a home automation system already, ST or otherwise.

I’d likewise prefer to avoid lashing together too many fragile cloud-dependent pieces (aka IFTTT…)

(Martin) #9

Just a thought, what about using EventGhost to trigger on keyboard input then send URL as an action. You could probably achieve a number ST actions from there. Eg IFTTT maker channel etc. Good luck.