How to use a smart speaker, virtual assistant in your shop
Illustration of smart switch and smart speaker in woodshop

After using a virtual assistant in our home over the last two years, it finally occurred to me: Why not put it to good use in the workshop? Setting up smart-home Wi-Fi switches and receptacles is simple and, compared to conventional remote switches, economical. With a smart speaker, I get fast answers to questions such as what time is it, how many centimeters in an inch, etc. I also use the virtual assistant to control my small dust collector, vacuum, and shop lights. For safety, I don't use a virtual assistant to control power tools. And it's important to ensure the smart plug is rated for the electrical requirements of the device plugged into it.

During glue-ups, I'll say, "Set a timer for one hour" to remind me when the glue is dry. There are many uses that I am just now discovering. 

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