Developer Sand Hill Engineering brought its home automation application
into the world of Mac OS X with the release of version 5.0 on Thursday. The company also announced that it will continue to support earlier versions of the software.
XTension runs on just about any Mac. It allows you to control household appliances — such as lamps, motion detectors, heating and air conditioning systems, security systems, and more — through X-10 devices hooked up to them. Signals travel through the wiring in your house and tell appliances when to turn on and off or perform other functions, such as alerting you when a motion detector picks up someone’s presence.
The software supports five types of X-10 devices: X-10 USA’s CM11a ActiveHome, Home Intelligence Corp.’s Two-Way controller, and Marrick Ltd.’s LynX-10 controller, LynX-Port controller, and LynX-PLC. XTension keeps track of messages sent to and from devices as well as scheduled events, which are created with AppleScript. You can import custom graphic views and icons and drag and drop items between windows. A variety of preferences allow you to customize the interface to your liking.
XTension for Mac OS X is US$149.95, with a free Lite version also available for download from the Sand Hill Web site. The Classic version runs in Mac OS 7.1 through 9.2. Any of the versions require only a Mac with at least 4MB of RAM.