Node-Red and MQTT is awesome for real-time data, but what if you want to store and retrieve messages? Its rather straight forward to use Microsoft SQL Server as your database. MSSQL is free and easy to get started with.
Cortana can easily be extended to aid you with your DIY home automaton projects. In this example Cortana sends MQTT commands to open and close a garage door as well as ring the doorbell with custom jingles. By the way, you don’t have to use MQTT, you can also do a whole lot of other things as well from opening a file, opening a program, or launching your favorite websites.
As of the writing of this entry I am frantically trying to finish documenting the MQTT Doorbell and Garage Door Opener devices in separate posts. Hopefully I can get those whipped out in a few days.