This is a newbie question. If this group has a FAQ area on the WWW perhaps my question has been answered already. If so, direction to the FAQ would be gladly accepted.
I am building a new home and have only a couple of pretty simple automation projects that I'd like to address up front. I will be installing cat5e cabling for a hardwired home computer network.
I would like to control a few lights and motorized window shades via the PC controlling the network. Most of the home automation posts I have seen refer to X10 and other devices that seem to rely on hand held remotes or wall mounted remote controls.
What is required to control these devices directly by computer?
I'm not opposed to a hardwired solution but this does not seem to be in the mainstream of home automation.