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Snooping with the ABN


    A sneaky feature of all of the ABNs (including the ABN-8+ and -1+, which have a built-in microphone) allows you to set up incoming voice calls from selected callers whereby the caller can listen in to whatever is happening in the ABN's vicinity. Setting this up is very similar to setting up voice calls as described in the "Technical Information" section. If, for example, the following message were to be sent to the ABN:


    and a caller whose phone number ends with 5553333 calls the ABN, the ABN will simply answer the call, and the caller can listen to whatever is going on within earshot of the ABN and it's phone. When the caller has heard what he wanted to hear (or perhaps what he did not want to hear!), he simply hangs up the call. The command is simply 'VLI' followed by the last several digits of the approved callers' number. This command is kept permanently in the ABN's storage memory, but can be deleted later by sending:


    Unfortunately it is not possible to combine the ordinary voice activation commands (such as to open a gate) for the same phone number with the 'VLI' command, since the ordinary voice activation commands will immediately disconnect the call.

    Note, however, that voice call commands can be executed from landline phones as well as cellular phones, provided that the landline service provides Caller Line Identification (CLI).

    The ABN can also be instructed to make a voice call to a specified number. This may be useful either for 'snooping' or to provide a 'missed call' notification of some event. The format of the command is as follows:


    where the digits specify the number to be called and 'n' represents a digit specifying the period after which the ABN should hang up the call. A table setting out these times is as follows:


    So, should we wish to have the ABN call someone with the number (082)555-6666 and hang up the call after 10 seconds, the command:


    will do the trick. It is also possible to specify the number using the international number format, such as:


    which will do exactly the same as the previous example (at least in South Africa!).

    A popular use for this command is to initiate a phone call when an ABN input is triggered. For example:


    will cause the ABN to make a voice call to (082)555-6666 if input 'J' is triggered. The ABN will then hang up the call after 60 seconds (that's what the '4' means), whether or not the call is answered.

    If that example seems a little strange, check out the section "Getting clever with inputs".

    Another use may be where you want the ABN to make a phone call every hour. This is a great way of annoying you mother-in-law ;-). This example:


    will do it for you. Note that the '2' specifies that the call should be hung up after only 10 seconds.

    More details about the 'W' or 'when' command used in this example can be found in the section on "Timed operations".