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Netatmo Outdoor car detection

Hi, I have a Netatmo Outdoor camera, which can trigger motion/person/car detected.
I created a flow to allow for detecting when a car would be in my driveway.

The expectation was that there would be a trigger when the car would be detected, and a trigger when the car would no longer be detected.

With these two triggers I could create logic to indicate whether or not a parking space would be available in my driveway at realtime.

Based upon this assumption I created the following flow:

Unfortunately, I suspect that the car detected event would be immediately followed by a car not longer detected event, or so it seems from my log information, that shows these messages within a second from each other in the log:
image

I think I made an incorrect assumption with the true/false logic assuming the else path would be executed as soon as the car would no longer be in the driveway.

To solve this I tried adding a condition “car detected” but there is no “AND” card for the camera. So this will not work.

Is there anyone with a bright idea that can still help me with realizing the logic to detect when a car is entering the driveway, and to detect when the car leaves the driveway?

Thanks
Roger

Hi Roger, nice idea!
This caught my eye at first:
When using ELSE cards, you should have a condition at the AND section.
You can use your logics variable: ‘isCarOnDriveway’ equals ‘No’
I don’t know why, but it seems like ELSE cards are also executed when there’s no AND condition set.

And I think you should split it up and create two flows, because you now don’t trigger something when a car has left.
The second one should trigger with something like ‘Thuis - Ingang Kapsalon - Driveway’ “no car detected” to set the logics variable ‘isCarOnDriveway’ to ‘No’ at the THEN part

I’ll share my Beacon detection flows as example to use.
It’s the same thing: Is a Beacon (or car) present, or is it not present.
I use a 3rd flow, to enable/disable a ‘virtual device’ tile, which shows home/away status.
Beacon detection, see screenshot below.

Note, the used timers can be set to 1 minute, or even left out

  • Arrival

  • Leaving

  • Setting the status

Beacon statusses:

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Hi, thanks @Peter_Kawa,

  • the isCarOnDriveway is set by this flow, so I cannot use it in the AND condition
  • the fact that there is no AND condition would explain why both sections of the THEN flow are executed - thanks for this valuable insight.
  • I tried adding a AND condition but the camera does not have one
  • I cannot find an event for the WHEN section that the car is no longer detected

When all the logic falls into place in my head, I think there is no solution with what I know now, and I should probably raise a feature request with Netatmo to also trigger “negative” events, like “car no longer detected”…

But, thanks anyway!!!

Your welcome, Roger.

If you navigate to your logics variable, and flip the value to No or False by hand (one time needed), you can use that variable as an AND condition:
IF car detected
AND logics variable ‘isCarOnDriveway’ equals No
THEN set logics variable ‘isCarOnDriveway’ to Yes
An other flow, for the “no car detected” trigger, should flip the variable to No again.

That’s the hard part.
It should be triggered by movement I guess. But not when someone walks between a car and the cam…

I now understand the absence of the ‘No car present’ card, while looking at the When cards.
I found it hard to believe, but it really isn’t there…

So what I can think of is f.i. adding a motion sensor
OR
Use the “if human detected” card

Thanks, you just confirmed it will not work:

  • there are no WHEN cards, so no properties I can use to test
  • there is no negative “car no longer detected” triggers
    → Netatmo feature request… :frowning:

Regarding the positioning and reliability of the event: it is reliable - I own the device for a week now and there have not been any misfires or false positives for car detected - yet… :stuck_out_tongue:

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I was thinking, we need a way to detect a human also, so you can tell if the car is present for at least, say 25 mins (a little less than a haircut session), and a human is detected, assume the car is leaving. Not perfect yet, but a start.

So I would use the “if human detected” card

Flows:
IF car is detected
AND var ‘isCarOnDriveway’ equals No
THEN set var ‘isCarOnDriveway’ to Yes
AND THEN start or replace timer ‘CarOnDriveway’ with a runtime of 25mins

IF human is detected
AND var ‘isCarOnDriveway’ equals Yes
AND timer ‘CarOnDriveway’ doesn’t run
THEN set var ‘isCarOnDriveway’ to No, after x mins (for x, say 1 minute)

Had similar thoughts, but when a human is detected at the same time as a car, two events are emitted, one for human, one for car. It’s a pretty clever eventing system, but it’s just not what I need …

I was thinking the human is detected after the car’s detection, after stepping out of the car.
Have fun with the project

Thanks!

I tried another method:

  • Create 2 timers (countdown timers app):
  • one for 300 seconds if motion is detected which is not car-related (e.g. human, animal) - unfortunately no “any motion detected” trigger card exists.
  • one for 480 seconds which only fired if a car is detected

When the 300 second timer expires and the car timer is still running then a car must still be there.
When the 300 second timer expires and the car timer is not running, then no car must be in the driveway

This way I can set/unset the “parking available” boolean and broadcast on MQTT.
The dashboard can then show whether or not parking is available.

It is not 100% reliable I’m sure, but it is good enough for now. In the meantime I have requested a new feature from Netatmo for ‘car/animal.human no longer detected’.

Anyone still has some brighter idea which may work better, please do post it here :smiley:

It is a workaround using timers indeed. It’s a bit funny and odd how Netatmo hasn’t a “my car is not there anymore!!” card. That’s why you also have a cam pointed at it, right? :wink: Fingers crossed they come up with it one day :wink:

As their API has not changed frequently I suspect this is not very likely to be improved…

After a day of this I can tell that the events for car detected are not consistently fired by the camera.

When a human walks near the car,

  • sometimes a new car + new human detected event is fired,
  • sometimes only a new human event is fired.

This makes the flow unreliable.

I suspect Netatmo not firing ‘no longer detected’ may be related to the detection not being reliable enough for this to work properly, but that is guesswork…

Netatmo responded that they would add it to the backlog but also indicated that this would not have priority :frowning:

Bummer. It seems such a standard option.

Maybe if more people asked for a feature request this might improve chances of it actually being prioritized.
Calling to every owner of a netatmo outdoor camera to request this feature with Netatmo?

  1. “x” detected
  2. “x” no longer detected

where “x” is

  • person
  • animal
  • car
  • generic motion
    -…?