Unlocking the power of ChatGPT in Home Assistant: A step-by-step guide

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If you've been keeping up with the latest advancements in technology, you may have come across the name ChatGPT. This cutting-edge language model has been making waves in recent weeks, with some even hailing it as a potential game-changer for humanity as a whole. While there are certainly ethical concerns to consider when it comes to this type of technology, in this guide, we'll be setting those aside to focus on something more practical: how to integrate ChatGPT (or the language model behind it) with Home Assistant.

But how exactly do you go about integrating ChatGPT with Home Assistant? Don't worry, it's not as complicated as it might sound. In the following sections, I'll walk you through the process step by step, helping you understand even the most technical concepts. Think of me as your personal guide to the world of ChatGPT and Home Assistant, here to make your journey as smooth and enjoyable as possible.


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Integrating Home Assistant with ChatGPT? Don't you mean GPT-3?

If you're interested in building a conversational AI, you may have heard of text-davinci-003. This model is the crème de la crème of GPT-3, offering unparalleled performance and versatility for generating human-like text. But while it's certainly powerful, there are a few drawbacks to consider – namely, that it can be slow to respond and is the most expensive option available. Thankfully, OpenAI has recently released a new model that promises to offer the same great chat capabilities at a fraction of the cost. Dubbed gpt-3.5-turbo, this lightning-fast model is designed specifically for chatbot-style interactions, making it a great option for anyone looking to create a chatbot on a budget. It is the same model powering ChatGPT, which is why this guide is titled the way it is.

What is the difference between ChatGPT and GPT-3?

When it comes to language models, ChatGPT and GPT-3 are two of the biggest names in the game. These clever systems use the power of artificial intelligence to generate text that's so human-like, you might forget you're talking to a machine. But what sets these two models apart?

Well, for starters, ChatGPT is actually a specific version of GPT-3, created by the folks over at OpenAI with one very specific purpose in mind: to chat with people. While GPT-3 is a more general language model that can be used for a wide variety of tasks, ChatGPT is all about engaging in chatbot-style conversations that feel natural and intuitive. So, what makes ChatGPT so good at chat? Part of the answer lies in its design. With a focus on providing helpful and engaging responses to user input, this model has been optimized to handle the unique challenges of conversation – like understanding context, maintaining a consistent tone, and handling unpredictable user input.

Of course, when it comes to raw power, GPT-3 still holds the crown. With an incredible 175 billion parameters, this model is truly a beast when it comes to generating text. However, don't count ChatGPT out just yet. Despite having “only” 6 billion parameters, this more specialized model may actually be more effective for certain tasks. To put it in more everyday terms: think of GPT-3 as a Swiss Army Knife, with all sorts of tools and features for tackling different tasks. ChatGPT, on the other hand, is more like a trusty hammer – not as versatile, but perfectly suited to its specific job. And when it comes to chatting with bots, sometimes a good hammer is all you need to get the job done.

Why integrate Home Assistant and ChatGPT?

In this guide, I will be showing you how to use ChatGPT for a basic task: welcoming you to your Home Assistant Dashboard with a personalized message. The idea for this project comes from /u/redsashimi on Reddit, who used a similar approach with text-davince-003 and Node-RED. However, with the steps outlined in this guide, you'll be able to set up your own custom welcome message using ChatGPT in no time.

And the best part? Once you've mastered the basics of integrating ChatGPT with Home Assistant, the possibilities are endless. You can use this powerful AI tool to automate all sorts of tasks, from checking the weather to getting news updates to engaging in fun and friendly conversation.

Screenshot of a Home Assistant dashboard with a dark theme. The main text reads: 'This is your Dashboard, Liam Alexander Colman! Good evening, sir! I hope this cloudy weather isn't dampening your spirits too much. Speaking of spirits, are you excited for tomorrow's match between Tottenham and Wolves? Let's hope our boys bring their A-game and score a howling victory.'

Creating an OpenAI account

If you're ready to get started with integrating ChatGPT into your Home Assistant setup, the first thing you'll need to do is sign up for an OpenAI developer account. This allows you to create the API key that is required to communicate with ChatGPT. Once you've created your account, head over to the settings page and create a new API key. Keep in mind that once you close the window, you won't be able to retrieve this key – so make sure to save it somewhere safe and secure.

It's also worth noting that you should never share your API key with anyone else. This key grants access to your OpenAI account and all the data associated with it, so you'll want to keep it under lock and key at all times. If you suspect that your API key may have been compromised or shared, it's important to delete it immediately and create a new one. This will ensure that your OpenAI account remains secure and that your data is protected.

Screenshot of an API keys management page. The page header reads 'API keys' and there is a note explaining that secret API keys are listed below and should not be shared. It also mentions that the keys are not displayed again after generation and that OpenAI may rotate any leaked API key. There are four API keys listed with their names as 'Secret key' and 'AutoGPT Unraid', with creation dates ranging from January 26, 2023, to May 9, 2023, and last used dates from May 14, 2023, to May 17, 2023. The actual keys are redacted. Below the list is a button to 'Create new secret key'.

Creating a command line sensor in Home Assistant

If you observe my code below, you might be wondering why we're using a command line sensor instead of RESTful. After all, RESTful is a popular and widely used protocol for exchanging data between different systems. Well, the answer is simple: templates. In order to effectively pass data between Home Assistant and ChatGPT, we need to be able to parse and manipulate that data in a flexible way. And unfortunately, the RESTful integration doesn't support template payloads.

That's where the command line sensor comes in. By using a curl command to send data to ChatGPT, we can take advantage of the power and flexibility of command line tools to create dynamic and customizable templates that can be easily adapted to different use cases. So while it might seem a bit unconventional to use a command line sensor for this type of integration, it actually offers several advantages over other methods. By giving us full control over the data we're sending and receiving, we can create a truly custom chatbot experience that's tailored to the needs of our users. And here is that code:

  - platform: command_line
    name: GPT Response
    command: "curl -XPOST https://api.openai.com/v1/chat/completions -H 'Content-Type: application/json' -H 'Authorization: Bearer YOUR_API_SECRET_KEY' -d '{\"model\": \"gpt-3.5-turbo\", \"messages\": [{\"role\": \"user\", \"content\": \"Act as a personal assistant for the male head of a household. You are witty and talk conversationally. The current time is {{ now() }}, and the current day is {{ now().weekday() }}. The weather is {{ states('weather.tomorrow_io_acehouse_control_nowcast') }}. Tottenham Hotspur play their next game {{ state_attr('sensor.thfc_tracker', 'kickoff_in') }} against {{ state_attr('sensor.thfc_tracker', 'opponent_name') }}. Greet me in a friendly but respectful way, commenting on the weather, football, and sometimes making a joke, in one or two sentences.\"}], \"top_p\": 1, \"temperature\": 0.7, \"max_tokens\": 320, \"presence_penalty\": 1}'"
    value_template: "{{ value_json.choices[0].message.content }}"
    scan_interval: 900

Let's take a closer look at the command line sensor that powers the ChatGPT integration in Home Assistant. This sensor is built using the command line platform and consists of several key components.

First up is the name – this is the text that will be displayed in Home Assistant, so be sure to choose something that's easy to find and identify.

Next, we have the command itself. This is where things get a bit more complex, as we're using the curl command to send data to the ChatGPT API. Specifically, we're using the XPOST method to send our data to the https://api.openai.com/v1/chat/completions endpoint. This endpoint is what allows us to interact with the ChatGPT AI and receive personalized responses to our prompts.

In order to format our data correctly, we need to specify the content type as application/json. This tells the ChatGPT API that we're sending data in JSON format and allows it to process our requests properly.

Finally, we need to include our API secret key in the Authorization header. This key is unique to your OpenAI account and allows you to access the ChatGPT API. Be sure to enter your key here and keep it safe and secure – this is the key that grants access to your account and all the data associated with it.

Crafting the perfect ChatGPT prompt for Home Assistant

When it comes to integrating ChatGPT with Home Assistant, one of the key things to focus on is crafting the perfect prompt. This is the message that you'll send to ChatGPT, telling it what information to use and how to respond.

Inside the curly brackets of your command line sensor, you'll see a few key parameters that define this message. First, you'll want to specify which model you want to use – in this case, gpt-3.5-turbo. Next, you'll want to craft your message. Here's where things get interesting – the more thought and effort you put into your prompt, the better your ChatGPT response will be. You'll want to include clear instructions for ChatGPT to follow, as well as any relevant information that it should use in its response.

If you're not sure where to start with crafting your prompt, don't worry – there are plenty of resources out there to help you get started. For example, GitHub is a great place to look for inspiration and ideas. You might also want to check out some of the existing ChatGPT models out there to see how they're handling prompts and responses. Just remember, crafting the perfect prompt is an ongoing process – don't be afraid to experiment and try out different approaches until you find the one that works best for your needs.

Close-up of a futuristic robot head with a sleek white design and a visor displaying illuminated digital eyes. The robot is set against a blurred background with blue and purple bokeh light effects, suggesting a high-tech environment.

Integrating ChatGPT in your Home Assistant Dashboard

Congratulations, you've successfully created a new sensor for your Home Assistant setup! Once you've reloaded Home Assistant, you should see a new entity appear with the name you chose earlier. This entity will be responsible for communicating with ChatGPT and generating responses based on your prompts. To make it easy to see these responses in real time, I recommend using a Mushroom Title Card on your Home Assistant dashboard. This will allow you to see the ChatGPT message right alongside your other smart home data and controls. Below are a selection of responses I have received from my integration of ChatGPT with Home Assistant:

ChatGPT and your privacy

If you're considering using ChatGPT for your Home Assistant setup, it's important to understand the implications of sending data to a third-party service. While there is currently no local-only alternative to ChatGPT, it's worth noting that you control what data is shared through the API. When you send a message to ChatGPT, you're essentially giving the AI access to some of your personal data. However, it's significant to remember that this data is only being shared with ChatGPT for the purpose of generating a response. There is no way that the AI can take control of anything in your Home Assistant setup or access your data outside the context of your integration.

Of course, if you're still uncomfortable with the idea of sharing your data with a third-party service, there are other chatbot solutions out there that don't rely on external APIs. However, it's worth noting that these solutions may not be as sophisticated or effective as ChatGPT – so it's up to you to decide what trade-offs you're willing to make in order to get the chatbot experience you want. At the end of the day, it's all about finding the right balance between convenience, functionality, and privacy. By taking the time to understand the risks and benefits of using ChatGPT, you can make an informed decision about whether it's the right choice for your Home Assistant setup.

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Is the ChatGPT integration with Home Assistant free?

If you're considering using the ChatGPT API for your Home Assistant integration, you must understand the cost implications. While ChatGPT itself is free to use, the API that powers it does come with a cost – albeit a relatively small one. When you sign up for the API, you'll receive an initial credit of US$18.00 to spend on usage. Depending on how frequently your command line sensor refreshes, this credit can go a long way – and with some careful tuning, you should be able to keep your costs under control.

To help with this, the OpenAI account settings allow you to set a hard limit on how much can be spent on API usage. By doing this, you can avoid any unexpected bills or overages - and with a bit of tweaking, you should be able to keep your monthly costs to just a few dollars. So while the ChatGPT API isn't completely free, it's still an affordable option for anyone looking to add AI-powered conversations to their Home Assistant setup. And with a bit of careful planning and management, you should be able to get all the benefits of ChatGPT without breaking the bank.

A portrait photo oif Liam Alexander Colman, the author, creator, and owner of Home Assistant Guide wearing a suit.

About Liam Alexander Colman

is an experienced Home Assistant user who has been utilizing the platform for a variety of projects over an extended period. His journey began with a Raspberry Pi, which quickly grew to three Raspberry Pis and eventually a full-fledged server. Liam's current operating system of choice is Unraid, with Home Assistant comfortably running in a Docker container.
With a deep understanding of the intricacies of Home Assistant, Liam has an impressive setup, consisting of various Zigbee devices, and seamless integrations with existing products such as his Android TV box. For those interested in learning more about Liam's experience with Home Assistant, he shares his insights on how he first started using the platform and his subsequent journey.


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