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Control your home and energy use with Vera

A new home automation product, Vera, will arrive soon from Mi Casa Verde. It's an impressively complete package for a first release. It's based on Z-Wave, but what you get is a standalone Linux-based controller that is both energy-efficient and sports a web-based interface.

In fact, energy conservation is a big part of the pitch for this new product. It monitors and reports energy use, and the video demo of the product emphasizes electrical savings along with the usual appeal about security, cameras, and automated scenes.

There's built-in support for the iPhone and iPod touch, SMS messaging, and an HTTP interface for tinkering. Since the product is just now coming to market, the company is offering subsidized starter kits in order to get feedback and testing from home automation enthusiasts. For info on the beta program, see Invitation to Enthusiasts.

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