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Remote Control on a budget

Eric Gwinn, writing Start your Mr. Coffee with these mega-remotes for the Chicago Tribune discusses options for using remote controls for more than just your television. The article mostly discusses consultant-provided systems, however, and the price tag is high:

"[...] it'll cost you. For $450 to $750 a room (plus the cost of a $5,000 remote and another $400 to program that remote), you can automate your life. Wake up and press a few buttons to turn on the coffeemaker in the kitchen, slide open the blinds in the bedroom, cue up your favorite song in the bath, and turn on the air conditioner to smooth your entry into the morning."

Of course, you can do it yourself for much less. A good place to start would be the new RemoteLinc remote control from Smarthome. It's attractive and very functional with an INSTEON-based system.

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