Love the latest "Notifications" app, but I have a request

I am thrilled that I can set something up to notify me if any one of a group of batteries gets to a certain level. The %text% variable gives me the device name and value all in one.

What I would like is the ability to turn on a virtual switch or make a log entry with the information. The VS could cause the log entry that I want.

While it's possible, I'd guess this is unlikely due to the focus of the Notifications app being sending notifications and not turning on switches. I know it requires the use of third-party code, but this sounds like a good candidate for Device Watchdog, which I believe can already do what you're asking for (turn on a switch if it has something to report, which you can configure to be only certain battery levels).

Othweise, Rule Machine is tricky to set up for things like this unless you have a separate rule for each device (I think we may have discussed this before), but if you just want a virtual switch to turn on, it can handle that--easily if you want one switch for any device (say, with the switch being on if any device is below a certain level and off if all are above), but with similar difficulty if you want a different one for each.

That being said, it's not clear to me what the role of the switch would be here (it won't log anything about other device names or battery levels on its own, though you could add a rule to do so when it turns on if you want--you may want to expand on that if you still want to do this after reading my next thought). But honestly, I think logs are a bad place to find important information if you're not actively trying to troubleshoot something that is happening or recently did. I'd prefer notifications for easier visibility, and then we're back to just the plain Notifications app again. :slight_smile:

Yep, the virtual switch was a bad thought.

I like the log because it is more permanent than my phones messages. A long time ago I asked Bruce if we could have the ability to write to text files. I didn't impress him enough to implement it. I used that on my Homeseer system and it was very handy.

I truly appreciate all the time you spend trying to help this old guy. I'm going to look at device watchdog again.

Ah, I see. Notifications are indeed hard to find after the fact sometimes. You can go into the device page in the admin UI (for your phone/tablet device) and it will show you, and I swear the app itself let you see it at one point too but that looks gone now.

Another nice thing about Device Watchdog is that you can "trigger" it to send you a notification based on either time (what I do, every day at time when I'm usually home) or by turning on a switch (which you can do manually or via a voice assistant, etc. whenever you want), or both. I only use it to check actual activity rather than battery level, as in general I find battery level unreliable (another story but something you may want to consider too if you haven't checked your device pages to see what typical levels, especially near end of battery life, are--lithium batteries do not have a linear discharge curve).

Good luck!

I was just going to mention this myself, I have some devices that stop working at a reported 25% and others that stop working at a reported 75%. In my experience, you can't really trust reported battery levels. I generally replace batteries when they're reporting 50 to 60 percent unless they stop working before that.

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