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Author Topic: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email  (Read 84354 times)

Offline bucko

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2014, 03:56:35 am »
It is so sad that MCV is going in the direction it is. You devs have been shoulders carrying MCV to the success (abiet shortlived as it is) it has. MCV should be supporting you guys 100%, instead they take your work for granted and could care less. So I feel your pain and hope UI5 lives on a little longer against the wishes of MCV.

I do hope you devs keep us all informed of which direction you go if you do move on. I don't doubt most users will bail with you and jump into a new system at this point. After investing $$$ with MCV, they should be ashamed at the way they are treating everybody here. UI7=crap, VeraEdge=crap, but they move along as if everything is perfect. They haven"t even had the balls to come here and "buck up" to the issues and explain what the hell they are going to do about it.

I don't have much faith that MCV will be in business much longer at this rate. We all should be discussing alternatives at this point to find another controller and move on.
Vera 3, 40+ Fibaro relays & dimmers, IPUX cams, Elk M1 Gold, M1XEP, M1SP, XVOR, M1RB, Elk124, Monoprice HDMI matrix & 6 zone amp, Denon AVR, Panasonic A8000, BI DV,On Controls

Offline Colin Burke McClure

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #16 on: December 12, 2014, 07:15:01 pm »
All,

This is an incredibly, incredibly off-putting thread to read. The general level of animosity, discontent, and negativism expressed here is beyond disheartening.

futzle & garrettwp you are spot on? This should be fun! If it isn?t, something is quite obviously wrong.

Again, I?m not sure how, or where, this overwhelmingly venomous sentiment comes from here. Quite honestly, it?s part of reason I?ve spent as little time as I have in the forums over the last 3 years, as most of what I read here is contentious at best.

bucko, it?s not about having ?balls,? I?m just not interested in participating in the drama. No one on the MiOS/Vera side is looking to engage in a ?public argument,? as futzle proffers. Quite the opposite really. We love this stuff! Just like you guys do.

It?s obvious, as you guys wouldn?t show up here day after day, week after week, year after year if you didn?t! The same is true of the nearly 100 employees we have worldwide that wake up each day and come to work and strive to make this the best possible product that we can to deliver a robust, broadly deployed platform for you to develop/innovate on/from to share with hundreds of thousands of other likeminded users.

It?s no surprise that we struggle managing the (very) fragile balance of the wants and needs of our legacy users against those of the broader consumer base that we?ve grown into over the last 24-36 months. It?s a challenge. Daily.

Our business has more than doubled year over year every year. Can we do a better job supporting our development community? Surely. We?re a small bootstrapped startup. We?re resource constrained; it comes with the territory. But this constant rhetoric that we?re abandoning our ?roots? or turning our backs on our ?original? customers is absolute rubbish. Full stop.

We ALL want the same thing. So rather than burning cycles here in the forum commiserating, conspiring, and droning on and on and on, let?s put that energy toward something beneficial and constructive. For all parties concerned.

That said, the request for better documentation and developer resources is, and has been, clear. We could not agree with you guys more. As such, we?re working diligently to bolster these assets, as well as transactional enablement of the MMS backend so that you can monetize your app & plugin efforts in the coming year.

In addition, all active participatory development partners should have current hardware/software to develop and test on. I?ve made the offer privately to various devs over the past couple years but I?ll make it a little more formal since this seems to still be a sticking point based on this thread. I?ll send out and email to the group this afternoon. Respond with your ship to addresses and phone number and I?ll get a VeraEdge dispatched to you early next week.

In the interim, if you guys have ANY comments, questions, or concerns, please reach out to the developers@ address so we can address them ASAP. And as always, if I can be of assistance or you need to escalate a specific issue, I am standing by to help.

Long story short, we know there are growing pains. They affect us all. Trust me. But in no way, shape, or form are we anything but humble and appreciative of your efforts - past, present, and future.

As always, thanks for your candor and support.
Cheers,

Colin Burke McClure
SVP Product & Innovation

MiOS  *  Puts You in Control
www.mios.com  *  colin@mios.com  *  +1 (888) 510-6467

Offline RHINESEL

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #17 on: December 13, 2014, 08:02:52 am »
Quite honestly, it?s part of reason I?ve spent as little time as I have in the forums over the last 3 years, as most of what I read here is contentious at best.

I'm certainly no developer so I won't get into that side of the argument but I will comment on this line.

Time and time again when things start to get "bumpy" I've seen companies take this route.  It's a "bury your head in the sand" mentality and it almost always leads to a failed product.  The people on this forum are the people that are PASSIONATE about the product.  WE are the first to find bugs, WE are the first to find flaws, and WE are the first hold you up to a greater standard.  But do you know what else?  WE are the first to agree to beta test software, WE are the first to leap to new products, and WE are the first to jump in and work with you to find SOLUTIONS.

People on this forum are a RESOURCE.  Not only to each other but to MiCaseVerde/GetVera.  We WANT to work with you as long as you WANT to work with us.

There will always be some percentage of people that are never happy.  Just like there are some percentage of people that are so happy they are blinded by the truth (fanboys).  Don't let your beliefs be blinded by what you see those two groups post.  They only make up a small percentage of your larger customer base. 

I wish GetVera the best.  You are entering a stage of the market that has evolved (or in some regards devolved).  Home automation is trying to become mainstream but in that attempt many systems have dumbed down their approach.  Please remember your roots.  Many of your customers want home automation, not the home control style of devices being produced now.  Don't chase a trending market (which is peaking 5 years too soon) only to lose the ground you already gained.

Regards,

Matt

PS. If you ever want to converse for any reason, I'm always available for PM.  I (along with others) will do what we can to make your product the best it can be.

Offline BOFH

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #18 on: December 13, 2014, 08:36:55 am »
Seconded! One of my main reasons for sticking with Vera is that she can run my house even if the Internet is down. And I agree, most of us in here are pretty passionate about the platform. So much so that emotions can run a bit high. :-)

GetVera, don't ignore us, use our passion and commitment and knowledge to help you make the platform better. I'm sure everyone agrees the plug-ins made by the community have added values to the platform, rather then the other way around.

Facebook may be the current fad, but the majority of your audience there are new users, just sticking their toes in the Vera pool. Dedicate a resource to these forums if only to keep us up to date on progress, find out how we use the platform to give you an idea of the direction most beneficial to take. Let the highly negative and highly positive cancel each other out and be left with the middle. Which can greatly benefit you.

Perhaps even partly dedicate a development resource to help budding plugin developers. Posting example code for certain actions will benefit far more than one person. As will providing assistance if developers run into a dead end. Others will see that info and avoid the stumbling block. That support may actually gain you more plugins to add value to the platform.

I'm sure you've seen members in here help each other solve problems. Which reduces the load on your support staff as those problems are not escalated to your support email. Realize that you have what is basically an unpaid pool of support staff.

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Offline hmspain

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #19 on: December 13, 2014, 10:51:02 am »
Had to jump in with my two cents.  I would encourage MCV to design a controller that they would want in their own homes; no skimping on the memory or cpu or storage, no need to fiddle with external USB drives to store more logs.

It may not hit your Marketing $100 price point, but if you are watching the market like I am, the home automation/security market is getting ready to heat up, and price of the controller is not really an issue.  I think of the thousands (oh yes) I have invested in Zwave... the controller either makes it work or makes it junk.

I guess I'm encouraging MCV to think like Apple and build the device *they* would like to take home.  We WILL buy it.
VeraPlus, Nest Cameras (6), Siren, Hue Bulbs/Strips/Blooms (65), Fan Dimmer (6), Aeon 4-in-1s (10), Water Sensors (3), Z-Wave Switches (20), Nest Smoke/CO Protects (5), Ecobee 3, HEM Gen2s (2)

Offline gregl

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2014, 05:40:58 am »
MCV/Vera ,

I suggest you really start putting A LOT more energy into working with the developers you have. A private mailing list with inside info..whats coming/access to a decent bug tracker...ASK THEM!!!

Small/medium/large... if you ignore this wonderful resource much more im sure they will be developing their bits for other systems. Already many are active at OpenHAB.

Yours to lose....

Offline rayp

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2014, 09:47:22 am »
I am not a developer, I am a CUSTOMER. There are so many controllers coming to market now and when I chose my Veralite, I read the reviews and chose the MCV based on them noting that it is supported well by it's user base and purchased it SOLELY on that fact.

I previously owned a reasonably higher end aquarium controller (well into it for $1000+), then they started rolling out flaky software and basically blamed the end user that it was something on their end that changed (couldn't possibly be our software that was a problem that put your $15K worth of fish and corals at risk because the chiller or heater controls changed). I sold that controller based on the arrogance and ignorance of that company and went with the company that listen to it's customers (and still does-very, very well!) and was the best dam decision I made to get away from that old company-who are of course no longer in business, no surprise there.

I come to this forum everyday just like many others and enjoy the plug ins and apps that allow me to do wonderful, creative automation with my home. MCV has worked hard to provide the platform for the developers to provide many, many useful plug ins, but make no mistake MCV it's the plug ins and the support from the developers and people on forums like these folks that make the devices appealing. The developers are telling you something-please continue to support them as they are very much supporting you.

I am only a customer and as always my option is to take my business else where, and when that happens I am not likely to return. Trust me when I tell you that I would far sooner come to a forum and search for the answer to a problem or post a question that is answered from a source of extremely knowledgeable people (think 'Reef Central'-for those into Salt Water Tanks) rather than waiting 2-3 days for a companies tech support to 'get back to me'.

I hope that MCV continues to work with the developers, continues to offer an outstanding product, and supports the developers to the level needed.

Ray
« Last Edit: December 15, 2014, 10:47:13 am by rayp »

Offline bucko

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #22 on: December 15, 2014, 07:54:53 pm »
@ Colin's response

I'll start by saying your response in itself is welcomed to see. That being said, I want to address a few of your comments.

"Again, I?m not sure how, or where, this overwhelmingly venomous sentiment comes from here."
MCV's policy towards it's customers and users created this sentiment. You alone are responsible for it. MCV chooses to not inform users of updates, and worse, forces users to accept them by discontinueing support to those who decide not to update. We become your beta testers as clearly you release major updates before doing much in the way of pre testing. Then, as users are reporting the same big problems they are experiencing, MCV makes no response addressing these problems or informing users of steps being taken to correct them. In short, it is MCV's attitude fueling this sentiment.

"That said, the request for better documentation and developer resources is, and has been, clear."
If so then stop talking and start walking. Do something about it! I am on here daily for over 3 years now, still nothing is done about it. Just "talk". There have even been talented members offering to do this for you. MCV doesn't even have the courtesy to make a response to them. "Trust me. But in no way, shape, or form are we anything but humble and appreciative of your efforts - past, present, and future." Step up and earn that trust from your users. We all WANT to see you have great success. We are not against MCV, but we are the ones fueling your success, treat us users with a little respect and LEARN from our experiences. Your service to users defines your success or failure. You need to turn around, get humble, and RESPOND to these issues many users are experiencing. Good service is critical to your success.

Bottom line here is the UI7 update. This is the straw that broke the camel's back. It is crap. Plain and simple. You must know it, but your attitude is bury your head in the sand and plod on. STOP IT! FIX IT! or better yet, START OVER! MVC's knees began to wobble with your release of UI6. That came and went rather quickly. You had the sense to nip it in the bud and develope UI7. But in your haste to get UI7 out, MCV nosedived into the abyss. From the GUI down to it's operation, it is a failure. Listen to your users! Make it right, or start over for the love of God. And where is this support of the user devs here? I've never see it. Now we are all going to lose them because of their frustration with MCV. When they are gone, so goes the rest of your users.

Colin, don't blow smoke. You may be uncomfortable with the sentiment here. You can change it. We will help you! LET US HELP YOU. You are pushing aside a valuable resource for your company. This is what needs changing. And this forum is the place you need to be participating in. Not some "social network". Right here! What is so hard to understand about that? I for one do not care about the un-organized jabber Facebook offers. This is not the place to solve problems. It is a promotional environment. Here is where you need to become active and report information to users. The "broader consumer base that we?ve grown into over the last 24-36 months." will be nothing but a memory for MCV if you continue on your same course of action.

Just "Walk to walk" MCV and take care of your own FIRST. Or as I like to put it; Buck up!

In conclusion, don't mis-read my comments as attacks against you. They are pleadings to get MCV to realize changes are desperately needed....now. I hope you take it as that and become proactive with your service to all your users.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2014, 08:02:39 pm by bucko »
Vera 3, 40+ Fibaro relays & dimmers, IPUX cams, Elk M1 Gold, M1XEP, M1SP, XVOR, M1RB, Elk124, Monoprice HDMI matrix & 6 zone amp, Denon AVR, Panasonic A8000, BI DV,On Controls

Offline Stuart

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #23 on: December 15, 2014, 11:48:56 pm »
@ Mios

There is a reasonable expectation that new software releases improve on those before it. There is a perception by the user and developer community that UI7 has not delivered.  Mios (by releasing UI7 as 'production ready' ) believes UI7, for the most part, delivers on it's promise.  This mismatch, in large part,  is the root cause of the disappointment that has been widely expressed towards UI7.

What were the design goals for UI7 both from an end user experience perspective and an underlying functional perspective?  Mios - you need to tell us what the UI7 objectives / benefits are so we know (as users) what to expect and (as developers) what we can exploit.  It's simply not clear at this stage and it should be.  Once we understand we and you can take the emotion out and make informed decisions.  As things stand, I (and based on comments in many threads, most others) do not see the value of UI7 over UI5.

Communicate with us and we can have a 'grown up'  exchange, without communicating - well you already see the result.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2014, 09:33:33 am by Stuart »

Offline Colin Burke McClure

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #24 on: December 16, 2014, 10:43:02 pm »
Wanted to post a quick follow up, as the influx of emails, PMs, and the replies here surely warrant it. I'll respond, individually, over the next couple of days (schedule permitting), as we are in the midst of the pre-CES crunch right now.

Thank you! Sincerely, thank you, to each and every one of you that have reached out to me.

In reading the responses the one constant is passion. And our lack of clear communication, here. You are absolutely right. It's true.  We've been much more present in social media than we have here in the forum over the last 12 -18 months. This channel deserves equal, if not more attention. That's a clear miss on our part.

That said, I'd like to introduce a key member of my team, Marc Shenker, whom I've asked to help ensure we are much more involved here, and responsive to groups' wants and needs, overall.

Please welcome him and know that he is empowered, at a very high level, to help catalog, channel, and resolve any outstanding items and issues that you guys have.

We hear you. We are listening! And we very much look forward to a meaningful ongoing dialog and making this FUN again, as otherwise it is all for naught.

As I said previously, we love this stuff, as much as you do. We're in this, together!

Onward...
Cheers,

Colin Burke McClure
SVP Product & Innovation

MiOS  *  Puts You in Control
www.mios.com  *  colin@mios.com  *  +1 (888) 510-6467

Offline mclass

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #25 on: December 17, 2014, 12:00:27 am »
As a "stalker" on this thread (and a user/integrator, not a developer), I can no longer resist dipping my oar .....

The parallels between the feelings here and those over at the Fibaro forum following their recent release of a deeply flawed beta are remarkable. 

Fibaro are about to release to the US market at CES and have focused heavily on social media, making claims that are simply not achievable reliably with current firmware.  It would appear that their marketing department has hijacked the development budget!!

I am keeping a foot in both camps, because I'm predicting one or other of these controllers will not be around in twelve months.  I am heartened by the fact that Colin has responded so positively and the level of passion of the development community, and wish Vera the best.  Many thanks too, to all the developers for the plug ins that make Vera so versatile.

I will watch with interest!

Stalking mode back on .....

Offline micasaverde

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #26 on: December 17, 2014, 09:20:23 am »
I'm sorry this has happened.  The problem we had with UI5 was that the smarthome world was getting away from web UI's.  Several of the new systems are 'mobile only' and don't even have a web ui.  But our UI5 plugins couldn't ever work on mobile if they had UI elements, since the UI was all html and javascript.  So, with UI7 we wanted to try to have a universal way of building plugin controls so we could add the code in mobile and the plugins would be universal across all UI's.  But it was overly ambitious and we failed to deliver, but couldn't hold up UI7 any longer--it had already been 2 years that UI5 was out and the market has come along way and dealers were pushing us that we HAD to get with the program and release a more mainstream user-friendly UI7.  Further, we tried to have a 'compatibility' interface in Ui7 that would ensure the existing UI5 plugins worked without modifications, albeit with the controls in a popup window.  But we couldn't achieve the goal of backward compatibility we were hoping for.  So, as a stop gap I had one of our own Lua developers tasked with making the necessary modifications ourselves to the UI5 plugins, if the original developers were ok with that.  I understand you're all volunteers and nobody's making money off the plugins and developers write code when they have time and we can't expect any devs to give up their free time and re-write the code they already spent a lot of time on because we broke compatibility with UI7.

Also, the way tech support was telling people they had to upgrade to Ui7 was not a management decision.  I think, in general, support reps always want customers running the latest version so they're not filling out bug reports on something that's already been fixed.  However given the incompatibility of UI5 plugins and the major changes to the UI, I asked them to be sure to continue supporting UI5.

We're having some internal discussions to decide what can be done about the damage this has caused to our development community.

Aaorn

Offline mrv777

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #27 on: December 17, 2014, 09:47:09 am »
I just want to say that it is good to see posts from MIOS here and it is appreciated.  I think the Vera has a lot of potential and want to see it excel.

Offline TC1

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #28 on: December 17, 2014, 10:55:54 am »
I'm sorry this has happened.  The problem we had with UI5 was that the smarthome world was getting away from web UI's.  Several of the new systems are 'mobile only' and don't even have a web ui.  But our UI5 plugins couldn't ever work on mobile if they had UI elements, since the UI was all html and javascript.  So, with UI7 we wanted to try to have a universal way of building plugin controls so we could add the code in mobile and the plugins would be universal across all UI's.  But it was overly ambitious and we failed to deliver, but couldn't hold up UI7 any longer--it had already been 2 years that UI5 was out and the market has come along way and dealers were pushing us that we HAD to get with the program and release a more mainstream user-friendly UI7.  Further, we tried to have a 'compatibility' interface in Ui7 that would ensure the existing UI5 plugins worked without modifications, albeit with the controls in a popup window.  But we couldn't achieve the goal of backward compatibility we were hoping for.  So, as a stop gap I had one of our own Lua developers tasked with making the necessary modifications ourselves to the UI5 plugins, if the original developers were ok with that.  I understand you're all volunteers and nobody's making money off the plugins and developers write code when they have time and we can't expect any devs to give up their free time and re-write the code they already spent a lot of time on because we broke compatibility with UI7.

Also, the way tech support was telling people they had to upgrade to Ui7 was not a management decision.  I think, in general, support reps always want customers running the latest version so they're not filling out bug reports on something that's already been fixed.  However given the incompatibility of UI5 plugins and the major changes to the UI, I asked them to be sure to continue supporting UI5.

We're having some internal discussions to decide what can be done about the damage this has caused to our development community.

Aaorn

This is the first straightforward and revealing post I've seen here, since I've been here. It's refreshing to actually hear the details and talk to us like we're partners here (many of us, including myself, are professionals in the technology industry with backgrounds in HW and SW product development).

Based on the info provide, my advice moving forward is that you form some sort of Product Development Council/Advisory Board that consists of dealers *and* 3rd party developers *and* power users here. There are many smart folks here who might have had ideas on how you could have achieved the product goals that were desired, in a given time frame.

Just some food for thought.

-TC

Offline Stuart

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Re: UI7 - "Dear MiOS Development Partner" email
« Reply #29 on: December 17, 2014, 11:41:09 am »
@Aaorn

+1 to TC1 comment and thank you for this information.

I will be following up with Andrei (always responsive and helpful) but wanted to take the opportunity to illustrate the depth of the issue Mios faces - right now.  Please to not take this as a 'blast' - I mean it only to illustrate one aspect where Mios can do better and we as a community can be more effective.

My plugin (GCal3) has been modified by me (and checked my Mios) to work with both UI5 and UI7.  Separate UI code for each version, updated javascript etc.  All the testing was done in a browser and it works fine.

Based on the post above - I went to my Android and downloaded the UI7 mobile interface.   The things that I noticed are: the icons do not display, arm and disarm buttons are combined but there is no way to access the plugin itself (i.e. get at the control advanced etc tabs).  It looks like the only thing I can do is set modes and turn plugins on or off.

I suspect the cosmetic aspect (icons not showing up) are a bug and in any case not a 'biggie'.  But - there is an apparent, large loss of user functionality (in my case feedback to the user as to what calendar events are pending / triggered) .  Based on the post above where it was stated that the 'big push' was to a mobile experience - I assumed I would see (layout aside) the same sort of  functionality as in the browser.  Is this meant to be ?    Should I have tested against the mobile UI?  My current impression is that it is 'broken' - that may be completely wrong or a bit right or ....

These are the sort of things that we need to know in advance of developing and enhancing plugins etc.

Stuart