Kickstarter spotlight: Knut
Another day, another mobile device connected sensor. That’s what it feels like anyway, but in reality, sensors like the tõd and the Sensordrone are fairly different from Knut. Knut is designed to stay put, running off two AAA batteries, and recording data using its built in temperature sensor or some sort of external sensor. It can run for anywhere from only a couple of weeks to years on those two batteries depending on how it’s set up and what it’s set up to do, and that is of course user-configurable.
Knut is designed to use email as a cloud service, and should be assigned its own (free) email address to do so. It uses this email to communicate both with its owner ( for alerts) or interface apps for Android, iOS, and computers (for data logs). By using email over WiFi like this, Knut has a reach far beyond what Bluetooth enabled sensors do, which is part of it being designed to be in one place. Using email also means that the “cloud service” is controlled by the user, and so when the device is in the user’s hands, it isn’t depending on the company that made it to work.
When set up, you can use Knut for things like checking for water leaks in the basement or the temperature of the dog house, warning you if someone opens your front door, and so on. I wouldn’t mind having one of these on the kitchen to warn me every time my roommate leaves the stove on, but at the rate he does that, I’d likely go broke buying batteries for Knut.
The cheapest Knut right now is $80 for the first 200 backers (106 remaining right now). $95 is the price after that, with more expensive options starting at $115 to add more sensors to the package. Some sensor options can be had from the factory, and external DIY sensors are also possible.[Kickstarter]