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Has anyone tried using the Philips HUE API through Codea? Need some help with http.request.

edited November 2014 in Questions Posts: 33

I'm currently trying to create an app that can communicate with my Philips HUE bridge through http.requests. The system uses the RESTful interface and JSON format. Basically, I was hoping someone could help me figure out how to properly communicate with my lights using Codea. As I am very new to both Codea and the HUE API, It has been a slightly daunting task to combine the two successfully. Ideally, I'd like to create a class that could handle the hue portion of my code. Is any of this even possible from within Codea?

I've tested many of the hue commands on my lights through the bridges debug tool, and its a blast to mess with. Now I just need to figure out how to make Codea do all the dirty work.

Mainly, I just need to know how to properly arrange the information required to send a command from my code.

-A command consists of a "Method", a "URL", and a "Body".

-Tested/Working example of a command using method "PUT":


The example above turns bulb #2 to "on" and sets color to "red".

This all seemed pretty straight forward in codea, except for the "body". These commands are always between "{}" symbols which seems to mess things up a bit, as Codea already uses them. Rightly, the same goes for the quotations. Is there a correct way to accomplish this? Any guidance would be greatly appreciated.

Documentation from the HUE website on how the system communicates.
(Explains: Proper Method, URL, and Body format)

A piece of python code that seems very close to what I need.


  • Here was something I was playing with... (Non-working)

    --# Main
    -- HUE API Test
    -- the hue bridge uses the RESTful Interface 
    -- Commands and responses are JSON Format
    -- Most commands include:
        --Method  --ex-- PUT
        --URL     --ex-- 
        --Body    --ex-- {"on":true}    
    -- Body is always inside "{}" which obviously doesnt work within my table,as they are already used.
    -- Is there another way to do this? Maybe a way of storing the value in a variable?
    function setup()
    function hueRequest()
    function httpResponse(data)
    function httpError(error)
    function draw() 
        background(40, 40, 50)
    function touched(touch)
  • edited December 2014 Posts: 57

    Hello @Circuit, this is a little late, but I have had some experience with using the Hue API to send requests to the lights to get some cool effects. The one thing that I believe is the roadblock your running into is that the request body would be a JSON table, and the data your sending is a Lua table which I do not believe would be implicitly converted into the proper format when sending as all JSON requests would come through normally as strings. For the body, you could try and replicate the JSON syntax yourself or find a library which can convert to JSON from Lua and vice versa. When I was first working with requests in Codea, I had similar issues with the body formatting. Let me know if that was any help, or if you could use a working code example, I could post that too a little later today when I have some more down time. Best of luck!

  • edited December 2014 Posts: 57

    Actually, here is a working example. You may need to change the IP address, but this was successfully able to send a PUT request to my HUE lights. The actual error was that your string formatting above was invalid in Lua as using the same quotation symbol was actually exiting your string, so you should alternate using the ' and " symbols when making that form of a request.

    -- Philips Test
    local URL = ""
    local error = function(data) 
     print("Error",data) end
    local success = function(data) 
     print("Success",data) end
    local request = {method = "PUT", data = '{"on":true}'}
    -- Use this function to perform your initial setup
    function setup()
  • Posts: 689

    There are plenty of JSON libraries on the forum that encode and decode tables to and from JSON format strings.

  • edited January 2015 Posts: 33

    @Beckett2000 Better late than never. I hadn't even realized anyone had replied. Thanks so much for all the guidance! I was able to get some little things working prior to your assistance, but most examples I have found were fairly complex. This is exactly what I was hoping to see, something nice and simple. I suppose my next question would be... How do I insert a variable from my code into the string? Im guessing one of these JSON libs I grabbed would be a good place to start, but I'm still a little confused on their exact implementation.

    I'm trying to figure out how to replace "newuser123" in the code below with a user id created by my program. I would also like to use different variables for pieces of the url, such as the IP address or light number. Is there a similarly simple method of accomplishing this? Thanks again for all your time.

     local URL = ""
        local error = function(data) 
            print("Error",data) end
        local success = function(data) 
            print("Success",data) end
        local request = {method = "POST", data = '{"devicetype":"test user","username":"newuser123"}'} 
    function setup()
        userID = 2436448
        ip         = ""
  • dave1707dave1707 Mod
    Posts: 9,817

    @Circuit When you post code, use 3 ~'s before and after the code. You has 2 ~'s so I added the third.

  • Posts: 33

    @dave1707 Thanks. It was pretty late when I posted and I was starting to go all cross eyed. I didn't even notice I had done that. Funny that two even worked at all.

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