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Beta and Pre-Release (Public) => Beta Testing (Public) => Topic started by: guest141575 on December 11, 2014, 02:52:42 am

Title: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: guest141575 on December 11, 2014, 02:52:42 am
I'm sorry to say but I think the UI7 experiment is a gigant mistake going in the wrong direction.

MCV, when the day comes that You can say


Then it would be a good time to bring the UI7 version to the market.

I WILL RETURN MY NEW VERA EDGE TO THE STORE TODAY.

My simple advice for MCV: Revert UI7. Go back to UI5 and make it run on new hardware.

Agree with me? please click [applaud]
Disagree with me? please click [smite]
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: lkh11lkh on December 11, 2014, 06:06:20 am
hi

I believed every hardware products need R&D on their software program.
it is maimly good for their future services & performances of vera product.

if vera do continue to configure on every vera hardware unit thru forced upgrade firmware to UI7 whenever 1st timer connected to internet, its really pissed off new & existing users of vera

if vera do not force upgrade firmware for each new hardware connected to internet
1. vera support still can continue to R&D their software
2. new & existing users of vera will continued to use UI5 as basic platform
3. less complain more time to R&D, good image & reputation for vera product
4. the option to upgrade is open to all & not by forced upgrade thru mcv

:)
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Stuart on December 11, 2014, 08:49:46 am
My 2c
1. UI7 MAY be a step in the right direction - it's hard to tell because much of the potential improvements are somewhat 'invisible'
2. The UI is OK but mainly just a bit 'fresher' looking - does not seem to contain much by way of usability enhancements - needs considerable improvement in responsiveness.
3. This is DEFINITELY not production ready and has no business as the default for new unit sales and new users - fine for those who do not mind experimenting (by choice)
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: guest141575 on December 12, 2014, 05:06:55 am
My 2c
1. UI7 MAY be a step in the right direction - it's hard to tell because much of the potential improvements are somewhat 'invisible'
2. The UI is OK but mainly just a bit 'fresher' looking - does not seem to contain much by way of usability enhancements - needs considerable improvement in responsiveness.
3. This is DEFINITELY not production ready and has no business as the default for new unit sales and new users - fine for those who do not mind experimenting (by choice)

I should know better than trying UI7 on my only Vera.

I could not benefit from any "invisible improvements" since there was just too many bugs.

Now my VeraEdge is returned to the store. Maybe someone else will buy it. Let's hope the new owner is willing to experiment with UI7.

I'm back on UI5 on a Vera3 and I'm so happy that everything just works.

I PLEAD with MCV to abondon further development of UI7. There is a simple solotion. Revert back to the stable UI5, to the time and point of development before everything started to go in the wrong direction. Then make the necessary changes to make UI5 run on VeraEdge. We (your loyal customers) will reward you. Your support department will be accessible again. And PLEASE before you consider releasing new software, release it to the BETA testers group first and don't rush things. We don't want that. We are the one buing your products so please listen to us.


Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: guest141575 on January 03, 2015, 05:01:38 am
What is worse, I believe MCV can render UI5 unusable by simply turning of the external login servers. Even if I only login locally there will be an unacceptable huge delay when logging in if the external login servers are turned off/inaccessible. I guess I will need a plan in case that happens because I don't want to become a UI7 Beta Tester. I'm very happy with PLEG  and I'd hate the idea to reimplement all my logics.



Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Marc Shenker on January 15, 2015, 12:37:10 pm
@Farang We have no intention of intentionally rendering your controller or UI5 unstable. We are not going to force you to upgrade.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: clippermiami on January 15, 2015, 02:22:52 pm
My 2c
1. UI7 MAY be a step in the right direction - it's hard to tell because much of the potential improvements are somewhat 'invisible'
2. The UI is OK but mainly just a bit 'fresher' looking - does not seem to contain much by way of usability enhancements - needs considerable improvement in responsiveness.
3. This is DEFINITELY not production ready and has no business as the default for new unit sales and new users - fine for those who do not mind experimenting (by choice)

I should know better than trying UI7 on my only Vera.

I could not benefit from any "invisible improvements" since there was just too many bugs.

Now my VeraEdge is returned to the store. Maybe someone else will buy it. Let's hope the new owner is willing to experiment with UI7.

I'm back on UI5 on a Vera3 and I'm so happy that everything just works.

I PLEAD with MCV to abondon further development of UI7. There is a simple solotion. Revert back to the stable UI5, to the time and point of development before everything started to go in the wrong direction. Then make the necessary changes to make UI5 run on VeraEdge. We (your loyal customers) will reward you. Your support department will be accessible again. And PLEASE before you consider releasing new software, release it to the BETA testers group first and don't rush things. We don't want that. We are the one buing your products so please listen to us.

I can't say I've been hugely impressed with UI7 either. From an appearance standpoint it is very wasteful of space, especially when compared to UI5. That said, few if any of us have much way to know what REAL improvements in the internals have been made ... The Plug In developers have the closest view of it and I'd guess they are still in the dark about improvements in the internal handling.

But hopefully when UI7 does "burst upon the marketplace completed and in all its glory" we will all wonder how we got along without it :-)

My greatest concern, and something that may not be possible to fix in the current architecture, it's LuaUPnP. I have two Vera 3 units, one with all the ZWAVE devices and the other with TWO significant Plug Ins, the DSC Alarm and the Blue Iris interface. NEITHER Vera runs at less than 100% memory for LuaUPnP and as we all know by now over 100% is a harbinger of system instability.

My ZWave Vera has about 50 devices attached and some PLEGS and it runs at 108% with only that installed. The other Vera with DSC/Blue Iris runs at 118% and I've removed everything that I can.

The bottom line is that I think the design of LuaUPnP is a serious problem to the stability and extensibility off this product. Neither of my Vera uses even 75% of the installed memory and they are both tapped out. I have mou way to know what the actual CPU usage is, Event Watcher says it's never les than 80% but Tech SUPPORT tells me that's wrong so I'm at a loss.

My humble opinion is that UI7 should have been a complete architectural change to get away from the design of LuaUPnP. But it is what it is.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: TC1 on January 15, 2015, 03:08:22 pm
My 2c
1. UI7 MAY be a step in the right direction - it's hard to tell because much of the potential improvements are somewhat 'invisible'
2. The UI is OK but mainly just a bit 'fresher' looking - does not seem to contain much by way of usability enhancements - needs considerable improvement in responsiveness.
3. This is DEFINITELY not production ready and has no business as the default for new unit sales and new users - fine for those who do not mind experimenting (by choice)

I should know better than trying UI7 on my only Vera.

I could not benefit from any "invisible improvements" since there was just too many bugs.

Now my VeraEdge is returned to the store. Maybe someone else will buy it. Let's hope the new owner is willing to experiment with UI7.

I'm back on UI5 on a Vera3 and I'm so happy that everything just works.

I PLEAD with MCV to abondon further development of UI7. There is a simple solotion. Revert back to the stable UI5, to the time and point of development before everything started to go in the wrong direction. Then make the necessary changes to make UI5 run on VeraEdge. We (your loyal customers) will reward you. Your support department will be accessible again. And PLEASE before you consider releasing new software, release it to the BETA testers group first and don't rush things. We don't want that. We are the one buing your products so please listen to us.

I can't say I've been hugely impressed with UI7 either. From an appearance standpoint it is very wasteful of space, especially when compared to UI5. That said, few if any of us have much way to know what REAL improvements in the internals have been made ... The Plug In developers have the closest view of it and I'd guess they are still in the dark about improvements in the internal handling.

But hopefully when UI7 does "burst upon the marketplace completed and in all its glory" we will all wonder how we got along without it :-)

My greatest concern, and something that may not be possible to fix in the current architecture, it's LuaUPnP. I have two Vera 3 units, one with all the ZWAVE devices and the other with TWO significant Plug Ins, the DSC Alarm and the Blue Iris interface. NEITHER Vera runs at less than 100% memory for LuaUPnP and as we all know by now over 100% is a harbinger of system instability.

My ZWave Vera has about 50 devices attached and some PLEGS and it runs at 108% with only that installed. The other Vera with DSC/Blue Iris runs at 118% and I've removed everything that I can.

The bottom line is that I think the design of LuaUPnP is a serious problem to the stability and extensibility off this product. Neither of my Vera uses even 75% of the installed memory and they are both tapped out. I have mou way to know what the actual CPU usage is, Event Watcher says it's never les than 80% but Tech SUPPORT tells me that's wrong so I'm at a loss.

My humble opinion is that UI7 should have been a complete architectural change to get away from the design of LuaUPnP. But it is what it is.

How about this other possibility... there's nothing wrong (per se) with LuaUPnP for HA work, but rather, how MCV has implemented it on the limited hardware platform they have chosen.

FYI, Fibaro also uses Lua for their HC2 controller.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: clippermiami on January 15, 2015, 03:13:59 pm
My 2c
1. UI7 MAY be a step in the right direction - it's hard to tell because much of the potential improvements are somewhat 'invisible'
2. The UI is OK but mainly just a bit 'fresher' looking - does not seem to contain much by way of usability enhancements - needs considerable improvement in responsiveness.
3. This is DEFINITELY not production ready and has no business as the default for new unit sales and new users - fine for those who do not mind experimenting (by choice)

I should know better than trying UI7 on my only Vera.

I could not benefit from any "invisible improvements" since there was just too many bugs.

Now my VeraEdge is returned to the store. Maybe someone else will buy it. Let's hope the new owner is willing to experiment with UI7.

I'm back on UI5 on a Vera3 and I'm so happy that everything just works.

I PLEAD with MCV to abondon further development of UI7. There is a simple solotion. Revert back to the stable UI5, to the time and point of development before everything started to go in the wrong direction. Then make the necessary changes to make UI5 run on VeraEdge. We (your loyal customers) will reward you. Your support department will be accessible again. And PLEASE before you consider releasing new software, release it to the BETA testers group first and don't rush things. We don't want that. We are the one buing your products so please listen to us.

I can't say I've been hugely impressed with UI7 either. From an appearance standpoint it is very wasteful of space, especially when compared to UI5. That said, few if any of us have much way to know what REAL improvements in the internals have been made ... The Plug In developers have the closest view of it and I'd guess they are still in the dark about improvements in the internal handling.

But hopefully when UI7 does "burst upon the marketplace completed and in all its glory" we will all wonder how we got along without it :-)

My greatest concern, and something that may not be possible to fix in the current architecture, it's LuaUPnP. I have two Vera 3 units, one with all the ZWAVE devices and the other with TWO significant Plug Ins, the DSC Alarm and the Blue Iris interface. NEITHER Vera runs at less than 100% memory for LuaUPnP and as we all know by now over 100% is a harbinger of system instability.

My ZWave Vera has about 50 devices attached and some PLEGS and it runs at 108% with only that installed. The other Vera with DSC/Blue Iris runs at 118% and I've removed everything that I can.

The bottom line is that I think the design of LuaUPnP is a serious problem to the stability and extensibility off this product. Neither of my Vera uses even 75% of the installed memory and they are both tapped out. I have mou way to know what the actual CPU usage is, Event Watcher says it's never les than 80% but Tech SUPPORT tells me that's wrong so I'm at a loss.

My humble opinion is that UI7 should have been a complete architectural change to get away from the design of LuaUPnP. But it is what it is.

How about this other possibility... there's nothing wrong (per se) with LuaUPnP for HA work, but rather, how MCV has implemented it on the limited hardware platform they have chosen.

FYI, Fibaro also uses Lua for their HC2 controller.

Perhaps I want clear, but I agree, it's the design of USD, the implementation
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: RichardTSchaefer on January 15, 2015, 04:52:09 pm
LUA is not the problem.

At one time LuaUPNP had a couple of threads ... and they ran into dead-lock problems.
At some time in UI4 or maybe as part of UI5 they went to TWO-Threads per plugin (devices that do not have a controlling device).
Some where in between would be more appropriate for a memory constrained system. They should have a thread-pool with a max of two threads being assigned per plugin.
The total thread count could and memory would be greatly reduced.

There are problems in the C++ code inside LuaUPnP ... they need better diagnostics when LuaUPnP crashes as well as reporting to the server so the details of each and every crash can analyzed and categorized. It's true that plugins can cause a crash ... but without diagnostics from a crash there is no way to really find and correct these problems.

Maybe an internal round-robin detailed log that captures the most recent events leading up to the crash which is dumped only as a result of the crash.

If we can't identify what's broke it's going to be very difficult to fix.

Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: BOFH on January 15, 2015, 05:14:42 pm
I unfortunately cannot see GetVera abandoning UI7 as they already have put to much development effort, both time and money, into it. I do agree that the current iteration is on about a Windows Vista level of reliability, compatibility and stability. But Vista morphed into Windows 7 which fixed those issues. I'm hoping UI7.1 will will appear and perform a similar feat.

Although I am pretty sure GetVera has ceased UI5 development, I'm also pretty sure they would not kill the cp.mios.com login servers and alienate a large part of their user base.

I would have preferred UI7 to have been more stable and more backwards compatible with UI5 but I can see where market forces may have prompted getvera to release it earlier and less polished than desired.

 
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: clippermiami on January 15, 2015, 05:54:58 pm
LUA is not the problem.

At one time LuaUPNP had a couple of threads ... and they ran into dead-lock problems.
At some time in UI4 or maybe as part of UI5 they went to TWO-Threads per plugin (devices that do not have a controlling device).
Some where in between would be more appropriate for a memory constrained system. They should have a thread-pool with a max of two threads being assigned per plugin.
The total thread count could and memory would be greatly reduced.

There are problems in the C++ code inside LuaUPnP ... they need better diagnostics when LuaUPnP crashes as well as reporting to the server so the details of each and every crash can analyzed and categorized. It's true that plugins can cause a crash ... but without diagnostics from a crash there is no way to really find and correct these problems.

Maybe an internal round-robin detailed log that captures the most recent events leading up to the crash which is dumped only as a result of the crash.

If we can't identify what's broke it's going to be very difficult to fix.

Thanks, a little better understanding is always useful.

But I think that ir is highly unlikely that UI7 is going to fix a problem that few if any seem to recognize exists let alone understand.

As to memory constraint I don't see it. As I said, my Veras never come close to the internal memory available and i'm will to bet that they don't approach max CPU either. But the DESIGN of LuaUPnP  appears to be s a bottleneck, everything is jammed into it  ... which I THINK you have agreed with. 
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Marc Shenker on January 15, 2015, 06:38:59 pm
A lot has been said here. If you have concerns about us turning off the servers, please don't. We still have users using UI4 on Vera2s.

In order to continue adding new features and functionality that is necessary for us to remain viable in the market place to the platform we had to change some of the underlying architecture. We know that there are bugs and the Development Team and Technical Support chase them down and prioritize getting them fixed as quickly as possible. We have been putting out firmware updates monthly that add a couple of feature additions and many bug fixes.

We need your help in identifying those problems. If you are experiencing a problem please fill out a support ticket at http://support.getvera.com/customer/portal/emails/new and then message or email me so I can get your ticket prioritized.

We are dedicated resolving your issues and I am a conduit that you can use to communicate your issues, problems, requests... etc through to Vera. I have been empowered to chase down whomever holds the information or resource necessary. 
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: tomgru on January 16, 2015, 10:42:58 am
A lot has been said here. If you have concerns about us turning off the servers, please don't. We still have users using UI4 on Vera2s.

In order to continue adding new features and functionality that is necessary for us to remain viable in the market place to the platform we had to change some of the underlying architecture. We know that there are bugs and the Development Team and Technical Support chase them down and prioritize getting them fixed as quickly as possible. We have been putting out firmware updates monthly that add a couple of feature additions and many bug fixes.

We need your help in identifying those problems. If you are experiencing a problem please fill out a support ticket at http://support.getvera.com/customer/portal/emails/new and then message or email me so I can get your ticket prioritized.

We are dedicated resolving your issues and I am a conduit that you can use to communicate your issues, problems, requests... etc through to Vera. I have been empowered to chase down whomever holds the information or resource necessary.

I will say this... it's been great seeing you (Mark) all over the forums today!
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Marc Shenker on January 16, 2015, 07:06:56 pm
A lot has been said here. If you have concerns about us turning off the servers, please don't. We still have users using UI4 on Vera2s.

In order to continue adding new features and functionality that is necessary for us to remain viable in the market place to the platform we had to change some of the underlying architecture. We know that there are bugs and the Development Team and Technical Support chase them down and prioritize getting them fixed as quickly as possible. We have been putting out firmware updates monthly that add a couple of feature additions and many bug fixes.

We need your help in identifying those problems. If you are experiencing a problem please fill out a support ticket at http://support.getvera.com/customer/portal/emails/new and then message or email me so I can get your ticket prioritized.

We are dedicated resolving your issues and I am a conduit that you can use to communicate your issues, problems, requests... etc through to Vera. I have been empowered to chase down whomever holds the information or resource necessary.

I will say this... it's been great seeing you (Mark) all over the forums today!

Thanks tomgru I assume that you mean me, Marc not Mark.

I'm charged to get things done for this community. Someone wished today for the Advanced Scene Editor to be added to UI7. Done, I tracked down the right person, hopefully it will be in the March update.

Tell me what you need and I'll do my best to get it done.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: BOFH on January 16, 2015, 07:58:07 pm
Is there a way to let the users customize  the 'filmstrip' at the top of UI7? It is very prominent and to be honest, 2 out of the 3 boxes I will not use. (energy and Security) I can see the latter being of use to the new Secure Vera but do those of us who don't want to go that route, have to have it showing?

A couple of suggestions:
- Possibly allow users to add additional custom frames and allow them to be arranged as the user likes. There already is an existing scroll function.
- Allow the current frames to be customized? I would much rather replace the Energy one with my MultiSwicth  thats shows if my cell is connected to my WiFi (home/away ) and also network status. The Security one, I'd love to have  locked/unlocked indications for my doors as I have no intention to use Vera security option as I am already going a different route.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: mikee on January 16, 2015, 08:05:57 pm
+1 agree the filmstrip takes up way too much space and is not useful

Same applies to My Modes and My Shortcuts (which really seems more like Vera's shortcuts).

The dash really needs to be configurable. I'd *really* like to be able to setup multiple panels configured for things like "climate view" (thinks like thermos, temp sensors, humidity sensors, etc), "lighting view" (on/off, dimmable, etc), "camera view" or whatever. The single panel is really too simplistic to be of value once you more than a handful of sensors.

Just my 2 cents..
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Ramias on January 16, 2015, 08:32:33 pm
Hmmm.  With employee participation and handling of feedback I may give UI7 a try again. 
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Marc Shenker on January 17, 2015, 07:29:55 am
Is there a way to let the users customize  the 'filmstrip' at the top of UI7? It is very prominent and to be honest, 2 out of the 3 boxes I will not use. (energy and Security) I can see the latter being of use to the new Secure Vera but do those of us who don't want to go that route, have to have it showing?

A couple of suggestions:
- Possibly allow users to add additional custom frames and allow them to be arranged as the user likes. There already is an existing scroll function.
- Allow the current frames to be customized? I would much rather replace the Energy one with my MultiSwicth  thats shows if my cell is connected to my WiFi (home/away ) and also network status. The Security one, I'd love to have  locked/unlocked indications for my doors as I have no intention to use Vera security option as I am already going a different route.

Good suggestion. I don't know how feasible it would be but I will pass it on.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Marc Shenker on January 17, 2015, 07:35:47 am
+1 agree the filmstrip takes up way too much space and is not useful

Same applies to My Modes and My Shortcuts (which really seems more like Vera's shortcuts).

The dash really needs to be configurable. I'd *really* like to be able to setup multiple panels configured for things like "climate view" (thinks like thermos, temp sensors, humidity sensors, etc), "lighting view" (on/off, dimmable, etc), "camera view" or whatever. The single panel is really too simplistic to be of value once you more than a handful of sensors.

Just my 2 cents..

Noted. I will pass on the feedback.

The concept of modes is to allow two thing,  a single step to put your home into a predefined state, all devices. It also allows a level of condition on a scene; you can designate if a scene runs in a each mode. With the Home Modes plugin you use anything as a trigger including geofencing.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: tomgru on January 17, 2015, 11:07:37 am
A lot has been said here. If you have concerns about us turning off the servers, please don't. We still have users using UI4 on Vera2s.

In order to continue adding new features and functionality that is necessary for us to remain viable in the market place to the platform we had to change some of the underlying architecture. We know that there are bugs and the Development Team and Technical Support chase them down and prioritize getting them fixed as quickly as possible. We have been putting out firmware updates monthly that add a couple of feature additions and many bug fixes.

We need your help in identifying those problems. If you are experiencing a problem please fill out a support ticket at http://support.getvera.com/customer/portal/emails/new and then message or email me so I can get your ticket prioritized.

We are dedicated resolving your issues and I am a conduit that you can use to communicate your issues, problems, requests... etc through to Vera. I have been empowered to chase down whomever holds the information or resource necessary.

I will say this... it's been great seeing you (Mark) all over the forums today!

Thanks tomgru I assume that you mean me, Marc not Mark.

I'm charged to get things done for this community. Someone wished today for the Advanced Scene Editor to be added to UI7. Done, I

tracked down the right person, hopefully it will be in the March update.

Tell me what you need and I'll do my best to get it done.

Yes... you. 😉
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Aaron on February 17, 2015, 05:42:32 pm
Marc,
Is there a plan, and ETA, for Branching Conditional Logic based Scenes? PLEG is excellent but still too difficult for the average person, and also very difficult to troubleshoot - I suspect, in part, do to the way Vera handles execution/timing of actions.

If/Then branching logic would alleviate most of the difficulty and remove complexity - while adding massive value.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: CMRancho on February 19, 2015, 10:13:37 am
Marc,
Is there a plan, and ETA, for Branching Conditional Logic based Scenes? PLEG is excellent but still too difficult for the average person, and also very difficult to troubleshoot - I suspect, in part, do to the way Vera handles execution/timing of actions.

If/Then branching logic would alleviate most of the difficulty and remove complexity - while adding massive value.

Aaron, when I bought my first Vera in 2009 I was shocked that Branching Conditional Logic was missing from the feature set. I have been begging for it ever since.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: RichardTSchaefer on February 19, 2015, 10:51:33 am
LUA has been supported for as long as I can remember: (Vera 2 - UI4)   ...
So it's not fair to say they do not have branching/conditional logic.

You make not like this approach ... but that's a different statement.

PLEG is complex ONLY if you try to use the advanced features of PLEG. (i.e. the Sequence expressions)
Simple AND and OR logic and handling is quite easy, easy to debug.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Aaron on February 19, 2015, 12:32:02 pm
LUA has been supported for as long as I can remember: (Vera 2 - UI4)   ...
So it's not fair to say they do not have branching/conditional logic.

You make not like this approach ... but that's a different statement.

PLEG is complex ONLY if you try to use the advanced features of PLEG. (i.e. the Sequence expressions)
Simple AND and OR logic and handling is quite easy, easy to debug.

I should have been more clear... looking for a Scene creator that exposes an easy way for all users to create complex logic. PLEG is much easier to use than LUA, definitely... but not quite what I'm hoping for to make branching logic easy. I have difficulty troubleshooting race conditions, and overlaps, etc.

Attached are examples of interfaces that would be far easier for users of all skill sets:
ELVE's Action Editor
Home Control Assistant's Visual Programmer & Scheduler

Vera's entire system is barely one step above Command Line (Ford Model-T) when we need, at least, a near-modern visual interface (Honda Accord).

I'm not sure why I keep trying... it seems like no one at Vera understands or cares as none of these things have ever been address/discussed in open forum. They continue to ignore answering any real questions about their direction on the product's development.

Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: rstrouse on February 19, 2015, 02:10:09 pm
@Aaron,

Let's put this into perspective.  Sure the Home Control Assistant is powerful and pretty.  However, it is designed to run on a platform that all in will approach $1k minimum.  You cannot negate the requirements of an Windows 7/8.1 os since all of the UI components, memory management, and I/O come from the platform.  So with the requirements 300Mb free to run the app after the os has loaded itself, minimum 16Gb storage for the os, whatever storage is required by HCA, you have moved well into another class of hardware.  Getting to that level of hardware takes it from a device to a computer.

Simply how long do you think it will take before the next topic will be "Please Vera don't increase my energy bill so much" or "Why are all these features here that I don't need" or "I'm planning on selling my house but it won't work without my Vera."  That is certainly not what I want or need.  If you need something else then perhaps HCA is the right direction for you.

When I sell this house I am not going to take the pool automation, alarm system, irrigation control, or the thermostats.  So I will be leaving Vera for the next occupant, if they want to play with it fine, if they don't want to use it, unplug it.  The house will still have lights and it likely won't be a point of contention for closing.

Vera is a nice little embedded system that doesn't break the bank, provides the ability to keep me from leaving the 3,500 watts of lights on in the front of the house all night, and allows me to install zone controllers in convenient places so I don't have to run all over the house looking for the switch.  In fact I have taken it farther than my original intent and included the Garage Doors, Alarm, and Pool.

Is UI7 unusable -- no.  Is it as good as UI5 -- I don't know haven't used it.  Despite some frustrations and a bit of fiddling, I have gotten to the point where Vera is doing what I want it to do.  Apparently, the frustrations are tenable since I have plans on integrating it even further.  Irrigation is next as soon as I figure out which non-cloud dependent controller I want.  If there is no available plugin for the model I want, I'll write one and let anyone else who finds it useful, use it or modify it for their own purposes.  Not Utopia but not a hell reality either.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: bbosch on February 19, 2015, 03:04:22 pm
Hi All.  I would also like to add some comments from the other end of the spectrum.

Marc - Thanks for stepping in here and hearing us out.  We really appreciate the time and effort.

I do not think UI7 is a lost cause. I for one appreciate the fresh new look and feel. In general the platform is moving forward. There are some issues but as long as there are channels to voice these, they should be sorted out in time. This forum is skewed towards "super-users" that would like to configure and have control over everything. It is difficult to balance this while maintaining a simple user friendly interface for basic users.

I would like to add a few "surface" items to this list.

- I think the states of the user interface is not obvious. When are changes submitted and applied? On some levels fields are updated "on-focus-out" events and sometimes on buttons. I never know when I did something that will make the system reload and interrupt/confuse the running scenes and I have for example left pool pumps and geysers running for extended periods when scenes were "forgotten" on reloads.

- There is too much padding on the controls. I always push for more padding on design pages as I think it ads a nice comfortable feeling to websites but UI7 is a web application built to do things (function vs form) and I think a little less padding would make it more usable.

- The Off button, On button and the percentage are all on top of each other on dim-able lights. (See attachment - This is on chrome at least)

- The On/Off buttons are not on the items in the "list" views. I often switch to the list view as I have lots of devices. This makes it easier to find the one I am looking for, but the buttons are not on there. I have to then click it to open the device page with MASSIVE on/off buttons.

- The Energy page struggles to authenticate. I always have to go to the http://mios.eemanager.net/ page to log in there and only then it starts working in the Vera UI. Then there are unnecessary scrollbars on the bottom and the side. Little annoying.

This is a feature request (I am sure this can be done but it feels like I should be able to set this up in the UI)

- I can with the GeoFencing set house mode to HOME when at least one user is at home. Can you make it set to Night mode when the sun goes down? This could just be a tickbox like the geofencing at the bottom on the presets page.

This post is getting too long, I'll stop now.

Cheers
Ben
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: shady on February 19, 2015, 08:33:39 pm
LUA has been supported for as long as I can remember: (Vera 2 - UI4)   ...
So it's not fair to say they do not have branching/conditional logic.

It may be fair to say they never fully delivered that solution:  "using either the web-based Luup plugin generator (coming soon)"  http://wiki.micasaverde.com/index.php/Luup_Debugging
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: rstrouse on February 20, 2015, 03:55:56 pm
@bbosch,

Is that device associated with a plugin?  It looks like it is using a static json from UI5 where the default_icon and the x,y,left,top for the scenegroup are not set correctly.  A dimmable light does not typically have an On/Off button.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Aaron on February 20, 2015, 04:08:51 pm
@rstrouse
I don't think your assessment of the costs or compute capacity is realistic for the other HA apps... both Homeseer and HCA run natively on Windows (Homeseer now runs on Mono too) and can both run at a $25-35 RaspberryPi. Vera hardware is not even as powerful as RaspberryPi.
... I suspect about 80% of the users would be overjoyed if we could simply buy our own hardware and run Vera on that. I also suspect, it would run better and we'd have less problems.

The Windows apps I have run (including several free apps - Zwave, X10, and Insteon) are FAR more stable and reliable than Vera ever has been. My Vera restarts on its own a few times a day because it leaks memory and/or it somehow cannot keep up... and I hardly run anything on it. PLEG is the most use plugin - I don't have video, or anything major.  Homeseer v1.7 (from 10 years ago) was more stable & more capable - and was easier to create complex scenes.

I've been doing HA nearly 20 years! I post from direct experience with over a dozen HA apps and 4 different hardware protocols.

People here complaining about the GUI are clearly not using the device/OS much. If your biggest concern is the GUI then congrats, you don't need Vera's capabilities and could easily use many other platforms that provide a better GUI.

Yes, most on the forum are Super-Users and this is what the 'promise' of Vera was for... sad to say after 2 years the only thing they have accomplished is creating a GUI with different colors.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Marc Shenker on February 20, 2015, 04:35:09 pm
Hi All.  I would also like to add some comments from the other end of the spectrum.

Marc - Thanks for stepping in here and hearing us out.  We really appreciate the time and effort.

I do not think UI7 is a lost cause. I for one appreciate the fresh new look and feel. In general the platform is moving forward. There are some issues but as long as there are channels to voice these, they should be sorted out in time. This forum is skewed towards "super-users" that would like to configure and have control over everything. It is difficult to balance this while maintaining a simple user friendly interface for basic users.

I would like to add a few "surface" items to this list.

- I think the states of the user interface is not obvious. When are changes submitted and applied? On some levels fields are updated "on-focus-out" events and sometimes on buttons. I never know when I did something that will make the system reload and interrupt/confuse the running scenes and I have for example left pool pumps and geysers running for extended periods when scenes were "forgotten" on reloads.

- There is too much padding on the controls. I always push for more padding on design pages as I think it ads a nice comfortable feeling to websites but UI7 is a web application built to do things (function vs form) and I think a little less padding would make it more usable.

- The Off button, On button and the percentage are all on top of each other on dim-able lights. (See attachment - This is on chrome at least)

- The On/Off buttons are not on the items in the "list" views. I often switch to the list view as I have lots of devices. This makes it easier to find the one I am looking for, but the buttons are not on there. I have to then click it to open the device page with MASSIVE on/off buttons.

- The Energy page struggles to authenticate. I always have to go to the http://mios.eemanager.net/ page to log in there and only then it starts working in the Vera UI. Then there are unnecessary scrollbars on the bottom and the side. Little annoying.

This is a feature request (I am sure this can be done but it feels like I should be able to set this up in the UI)

- I can with the GeoFencing set house mode to HOME when at least one user is at home. Can you make it set to Night mode when the sun goes down? This could just be a tickbox like the geofencing at the bottom on the presets page.

This post is getting too long, I'll stop now.

Cheers
Ben

Ben, thanks for the positive words, they are appreciated. Note, that even when I'm not commenting I am in here listening.

You make a lot of good points here; many have commented that there is too much white space in the web interface.

Geofencing. One step at a time. We intend to roll out more features and functionality in the future. Is what you are looking for more like an evening mode? So certain lights or devices will only be effected after sunset? That could possibly be achieved by setting up certain scenes to only run in certain modes. I  view of night mode as bedtime mode, lock the house up turn everything off for the night.... We do have additional ideas about modes that may address what you are looking for. You could enable Night Mode through a scene by using the HouseModes Plugin.

Energy reporting. We are aware of the authentication issues and the slow loading issues. We are working with the 3rd party who provides this functionality to resolve the issues. I'll create a Customer Care ticket for you to see if there is anything we can do on our end to resolve that issue for you until

The ON/OFF dimmer issue is specific to you. I use Firefox and have never seen that and I don't see it when I use Chrome.

ON/OFF buttons in the list view, I'm with you 100% and will pass it on to the Development team.

Ben, thanks for you thoughts and the positive feedback. I keep a running list of items that are being requested and am adding yours to it.

Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: bigzippy on February 20, 2015, 05:39:47 pm

We do have additional ideas about modes that may address what you are looking for. You could enable Night Mode through a scene by using the HouseModes Plugin.


Hi Marc,

I do not like the new house modes, and in particular how they are inflexible and permeate in a very naive way the device variables. In a professional capacity as an architect and developer it makes me cringe. This can probably not be undone but please no more! What we need is proper state management, where WE can decide what modes (i.e. enumerated values) and persisted state is relevant. For instance, I can be asleep but not at home, I can be away but someone in the house to feed the cats.

I want to be able to handle state properly, including native support for time series of device variables. This is basic stuff, not just for advanced users. Don't pander to iPhone mentality exclusively!

Please please please have some vision of openess in the architecture. You seem to be building a more and more inefficient and closed system. It is trick play and will eventually catch you out.

BZ

P.S. The wants listed here are not exhaustive, even for a basic level of operation e.g. I want to specify the time to run a heal, do a backup etc. I want scenes with delayed components to continue to run after a reload. Etc.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Aaron on February 20, 2015, 05:58:36 pm
bigzippy hit is correctly but I'm not sure we can clearly explain without many examples.

I, currently, have several House Modes I create with PLEG...

Disarm
Away
Sleep
Guest
Sitter
Vacation
Spa

All of these have multiple facets including different sensors, lights, notifications, alarm panel integrations, etc.

For instance...
Motion at the Front Door - 'Sleep' has very loud notification sound & lights will turn on VS 'Disarm' has a mild knocking sound & no lighting

True automation (not control as most novices do) is complex. The only way for Vera to support this today is with PLEG or raw LUA... neither are ideal. We need a complex scene editor and then any built-in house modes will be unnecessary - they are useless for most of us even now.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: bigzippy on February 20, 2015, 06:24:28 pm
bigzippy hit is correctly but I'm not sure we can clearly explain without many examples.

I, currently, have several House Modes I create with PLEG...

Disarm
Away
Sleep
Guest
Sitter
Vacation
Spa

A point I was hinting at is that Vera have closed the door on defining new modes by including new mode device variables which have numerical values assigned to particular modes. This is just dumb-ass-zero-moves-ahead design. Yes this can be construed as an insult but it is just fact.

BZ
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: shady on February 20, 2015, 06:43:46 pm
We need to be seriously focused on preventing feature creep and also focus on the top outstanding bugs raised by the top plug-in developers.

So no Geofencing or fancy modes or buttons.  Yes on: Core functionality, reliability, security, and some cosmetic UI changes to make it more intuitive.

I worry about MCV being too responsive to all of these user-specific requests that they will miss this opportunity to fix the outstanding issues that have been plaguing the plug-in developers.

I want the window covering controls to finally be overhauled, but it isn't as important as the outstanding bugs.

Edit:  I do appreciate everything Marc and the MCV Team are doing and have been doing, I just want to stay focused.  Eye of the Tiger.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: rstrouse on February 20, 2015, 08:57:30 pm
@Aaron,

I took a long hard look at HS3 when I was looking for pool control.  I have been building windows apps since Windows 286 and would have been more comfortable with C# .NET than Lua.  That being said I spent a large amount of time on the Homeseer forums.  The users there have much in common with the users here and issues there are pretty much the issues here.  Their choice in XP embedded, uggh.  That is going to be a set of lead boots in the short and long run for them.

Is the Vera hardware lacking... as a programmer there is never enough memory, cpu cycles, and storage.  If MCV came out with a more powerful device tomorrow I would buy it even at a $3k price point for HS3-PRO100 and even with UI7.  So, yes I agree that MCV needs to deliver a more capable device and as a programmer I will work hard to write gluttonous code to push it beyond it's capabilities... that's just what we do.

I don't have the HA background that you do, but really... complaints about the GUI doesn't make anyone any less of a user and I apologize if I'm twisting your point a bit.  Perhaps us something less than super users are just using it differently than you guys with the big yellow "S" on your leotard.  I haven't found a need yet where there wasn't a path to get it accomplished.  But then again, I haven't longed for Vera to put the seat down after I pee or notify the maid when I miss so maybe I am not doing "true" automation and simply doing novice "control."  On the other side of that coin though, Vera does tell me when I need to put salt in the pool, if I left the garage door open after leaving the house, and many other things related to devices that make this my home.

@Whoever is listening

In the end I really would like some of issues to be ironed out especially around the supported devices and let us (developers) help push out new functional features.  The house modes, geofencing... etc all sound great on the surface but let me add plugin device types to the Mobile App and don't steal all my precious real estate with half-baked modes, shortcuts, and goofy status bars.  Then, I'll create you a state engine and tie it to an expert system.  The underlying event logic is already there on Vera and it's hackable.  I'm not a PLEG user yet (soon after irrigation) but I would guess that is what Richard has done.

The things that are a little tougher to get a handle on are the things BZ talked about.  Setting the time for heal and backups, persistent state management for running scenes, and the ability to write user data without having to restart luup.

I realize that on the grand scheme of things that I am a "Johnny come lately."  I don't bear the scars and haven't built up the anguish of some posting here.  Perhaps you may feel that I don't even have the right to comment, but perspective is a funny thing.  I don't think MCV is slighting anyone and I do believe they have some lead boots of their own they are trying to shed.  Still, responding to fear of their competition's feature set isn't a great strategy for getting back to single platform support.  Maybe I'm wrong, but I'll bet more users upgraded to UI7 based upon device support for the GD00Z than all the new features combined.  Imagine what would happen if the rough edges on spotty devices were fixed.
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: Aaron on February 20, 2015, 09:19:36 pm
@bigzippy - I understood exactly your point, and agreed. I was trying to show how Vera's efforts to build-in House Modes was a waste of time. This was why I said... "We need a complex scene editor and then any built-in house modes will be unnecessary - they are useless for most of us even now."

@rstrouse - yes, there are a few reasons I canned Homeseer at v2. I won't go into it but their development derailed, and went to crap, after v1.7. My point about the GUI was if people are focused on giving feedback to Vera bout the UI it provides them an excuse to ignore the lingering problems with the underlying code. It is merely a distraction of the users from the problems - Vera's engine. While you are complaining about the paint job you stop complaining about the fact that 3 of the cylinders are blown in the V6.

Being new to Vera, what you don't realize is the real issues ave been lingering for years... through a dozen code releases. This is the problem.

I wish people would stop talking about the GUI and focus on fixing bugs, creating core code stability, and adding core functionality that is missing!

Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: intveltr on February 21, 2015, 07:57:24 am
I wish people would stop talking about the GUI and focus on fixing bugs, creating core code stability, and adding core functionality that is missing!

I agree that there are pressing issues in the core (as well as a need for proper issue tracking, as mentioned in another thread), but the GUI is important for another reason: new users. 

Personally I hardly use the GUI anymore unless I need to fiddle with a scene.  Even device inclusion / exclusion is done from a mobile app.  But the GUI is what new users will see.  Some users may graduate to "power user" at some point and use Lua, PLEG, and apps instead of the default GUI functionality, but I expect that most users will stay with the vanilla UI... and get frustrated at some point.  That may not matter to us, but it matters to the viability of Vera as a mainstream product, to the company's bottom line and thus to the ability of the company to add advanced features (and the future of the product in general).
Title: Re: UI7 - MCV, Realize now that this is not what we want!
Post by: TC1 on February 21, 2015, 03:05:01 pm
Just to add to this, the whole GUI debate is MCV's fault for naming their naming their major firmware releases UI-Something. People see "UI7" and think it's just a GUI update... and it's not. UI-something = the entire product, core engine and UI.

Just another example how they mismanage and don't plan well. Sorry, but having 3 decades in the hi-tech field gives me some credentials to criticize.

I also find it disheartening that there are those criticizing or praising one product vs another, with outdated information. I think it's worthy to have well-informed debates on Vera vs other-products because competition benefits the consumer in the end. For example, HS has worked hard to decouple the software not only from the hardware, but the OS choice. HS3 can now run on the consumer's choice of hardware, virtual machine, and *any* modern version of Windows and Linux (yes the plugins have to be ported to Linux). It would be awesome if MCV took a cue from this and decoupled Vera from the limited hardware they keep trying to push onto the consumer. Then we would no longer be having the hardware debate and more focus on improving the actual software functionality.

Don't get me wrong, in no way do I believe there is a perfect sub-$1k HA controller out there. But in my 1+ years as an actual product user and the 3+ years of lurking and reading these forums before taking the plunge, it's not hard to see all the opportunities that MCV have squandered. The facts speak for themselves.

Just my lazy afternoon 2-cents.