May Meeting: The Internet of Things

Join us and Mindseeker on Tuesday, May 27, at 6:00 PM in the Mt. Kilimanjaro/Mt. Everest rooms of the Charlotte Microsoft Campus. Every day there are more and more devices invented that enhance our lives. The Internet of Things, IoT, is upon us in a big way and more objects are becoming embedded with sensors and gaining the ability to communicate. It is easy to use a microcontroller to collect data and send to the cloud to analyze and make new insights with the data. Our homes, businesses, and cities are all becoming smart.

In this talk you will learn how to leverage your existing .NET skills for the IoT and connect to the physical world! You will learn how to use C# and the .NET micro framework to control Netduino microcontrollers that read sensors and control devices over the network. Additionally you will learn how to use the vision system of the Microsoft Kinect SDK in new and creative ways to control devices from both gestures and speech recognition.

The Internet of Things IoT is one of the latest popular buzz phrases, but has been my passion for three years. Devices that can both sense the environment and communicate become both tools for understanding and also allow you to control it.

My killer IoT projects

  1. Combine with the Microsoft Kinect vision system to allow gestures to control IoT devices
  2. Steer a blimp from a mobile phone
  3. Aim a squirt gun from gestures or from a phone to nail the kids swimming in the pool
  4. Control the garage door
  5. Control watering of our garden
  6. Control the lights at home from the web, audio commands or from gestures
  7. Transmit IR signals to control TV and music from a website
  8. Scare the kids at Halloween with ghost and monsters that are controlled from a mobile app and interact with the kids through the Microsoft Kinect vision system

Microsoft Channel 9 Coding4Fun has featured my projects 6 times. See Microsoft Channel 9’s latest blog post on my project Home Automation with a little help from Netduino, Microsoft Kinect Point Cloud and Speech Recognition:

My articles and videos on the topic have a combined total of nearly 400,000 views and I have all of the code available in open source projects.

The meeting presenter is Dan Thyer.

Dan graduated summa cum laude from North Carolina State University with dual degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering. Dan attended NC State on full scholarship program with General Motors. After working with GM, Dan served as application development director for the largest Microsoft Business Solutions Partner in the Carolinas. During this time, Dan’s team won two Microsoft Pinnacle awards. For the past 11 years, as Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer of, Logical Advantage (, a software consulting business, Dan has successfully architected and delivered web-based and mobile applications for many Fortune 500 companies. Dan focuses his energies on emerging technologies, and ensuring that all projects are architected to meet the client’s current and future needs. Dan collaborates with his architects to create technical standards, including coding standards, tools, and platforms. He holds a leadership role in the local Microsoft Enterprise Developer’s Guild and has been on the steering committee for over a dozen years.

When Dan is not being CTO, he is building cool stuff and writing articles about it. You can read his blog at Logical Advantage and follow him on Twitter at @logicaldan.

The meeting is sponsored by Mindseeker.

Mindseeker, Inc. is a certified, small business and minority owned Professional Services supplier focused on achieving efficiency and revenue targets for our clients. Headquartered in northern Virginia with regional offices in Charlotte, NC, Seattle, WA, and Pittsburgh, PA we are well-positioned to service most industries and provide top notch resource management solutions. We offer three distinct areas of expertise: IT Consulting, Process Re-engineering, and Financial Programs Delivery. Our Mindseeker Resources and Customers include highly trained and well-recommended IT Managers, Developers, and Program Managers. Learn more at

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