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The best robot vacuum for me is the one I hacked

A little extra hardware, a handful of Linux commands, and boom, the vacuum is free. | Photo Illustration by Cath Virginia / The Verge

Conceptually, I love robot vacuums. A little friend who cleans up my floor? Fantastic. Into it. The issue is, unfortunately, I don’t trust them. They constantly report back to the external servers, and they can be a huge security liability. I don’t want that. Someone has to have hacked these things, I reasoned. A quick search revealed I was correct. This is how I came across Valetudo, a project that aims to liberate robot vacuums from the cloud.

Valetudo is a firmware replacement for your robot. It integrates with a vacuum’s existing software and acts like a cloud replacement that allows you to control your robot vacuum locally. Instead of having to use a proprietary app on your phone, which connects to a distant server, which then…

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