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Author Topic: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7  (Read 73237 times)

Offline Z-Waver

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #120 on: November 01, 2013, 05:00:30 pm »
And, even when we have a new Ui that doesn't break compatibility, there can be a firestorm in the forums, but if we do break backwards compatibility the firestorm is merciless.  This is why you hear us discussing our UI6 and UI7, but the last release for Vera is still UI5.

So I fear the community...
The firestorm is inevitable. Obligatory xkcd. The way I see it, you've got three choices:

1. Release before Christmas. Premature release bugs/issues and lack of plugin support results in uncontrollable firestorm.

2. Developer and Beta release, then general release after Christmas. Months of whining followed by average firestorm because the UI is the wrong color/size/language/religous denomination/smell.

3. Wait too long or do nothing at all. Months of whining... firestorm... lose Vera users to Linksys and Fibaro.

It's the classic case of; you're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't. I think option 2 is your least worst option.

Offline Da_JoJo

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #121 on: November 02, 2013, 12:05:51 am »
i just don't understand why MCV won't just discuss the plugin part with the developers of these.
i mean i am making a vera remote for pc and i had to have like 3 years of experience with the vera and we had to even write a lot of the documentation ourselfs just to get it somewhat going and figure out all the options. i am more then willing to change the back-end of my program to adapt to the new standard that could be made instead of the old one we have now. there are a lot of new z-wave devices now and even more are comming to the market and it would require drastic changes in order to get good functionality out of the multi-devices.
i would find the sacrifice we developers would need to make a lot better solution then keeping it on all the old not-that-great interfacing with the vera. for me it makes no sense to keep it backwards compatible to old models and therefor miss a lot of functionality that it could have. it's not so much effort to do a back-end change for the plugin and remote developers and i think most of the developers here have the same opinion. i favor the work-together model as it would get us all benefits and would certainly make the vera a marktleading product.
at least talk to richard to get the PLEG and veralerts a standard inventory, hire him or donate him some devices and stuff as he really makes a difference here. :-D
« Last Edit: November 02, 2013, 12:08:26 am by Da_JoJo »
Vera lite (1.5.622), 2x an-158/2, dead usb pl2302 rs-232, 2x greenwave 6 port, 4x Fibaro FGD211 v1.6, FGBS001, few FGS - 221, etc. AuthomationHD 3 for android :-)
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Offline Z-Waver

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #122 on: November 02, 2013, 08:38:31 am »
@Da_JoJo - Like I implied before, they will never please everyone. Your ideas sound great, to you and others. But, I can see why MCV may have issues with your ideas.

- Work with the plugin developers.
Which ones? Who's a developer and who's a waste of resources? Does Da_JoJo's project provide value to MCV? Should Da_JoJo be included in the developer group? DO they need to create a "certified developer" group or just use existing Beta testers and, if so, how many of those are still actively developing? One thing's for sure, it will take resources(people/money/time).

- Abandon backward compatibility.
 This potentially breaks every plugin out there not to mention the smart phone apps. There are many plugins and apps that are still being used but are not being maintained. There will be a firestorm if a user updates their firmware and suddenly most of their automation stops working with no way to get it working again other than revert firmware and restore from backup. It's happened before. I think that the only way for MCV to "safely" abandon backward compatibility is to release UI7 on new hardware with no way to upgrade and break the old hardware. This seems to be what's happening up until now. But, I'm sure there would be a bitch-fest if everyone had to buy new hardware to get the new UI.

It would be nice to be able to work together, but that doesn't mean that there aren't difficulties in attempting to do so. And, as a company you are much less motivated to face difficulties when there is little or no financial incentive. What you/we would like will cost MCV hard dollars. They must weigh carefully what they spend for goodwill versus what it may or may not earn them in the future. It doesn't benefit MCV financially to upgrade Vera Lite. It is better for them to not upgrade Vera Lite and "force" you to buy a new Vera Pro if you want the new stuff.

My point is that no matter what MCV does, they will piss people off. They have to figure out the cheapest way to piss off the fewest people. I'm also betting that the majority of people buying Veras don't have accounts on this forum.

I do feel, as you do, that it would be to MCV's advantage to bring PLEG into to core firmware. Buy it, license it, hire Richard(if he's willing) and then improve it. PLEG provides a LOT of missing power to Vera, but its interface is also rather unfriendly.(Sorry Richard)

Offline Da_JoJo

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #123 on: November 03, 2013, 12:36:20 am »
yeah i got the point allready :-)
still at some point we need to move forward and leave certain stuff behind if we want to get somewhere where everyone is going to have an improved system and actually can do all the stuff they wanna do with vera. having a little say in the new interface would surely benefit most of us as we are still the end-users and have to work with it. i personally wouldn't mind that only the bugs get fixed and the back-end interfacing would be improved and the firmware would finally get out of beta stages which it is in since i bought the thing. i frankly dont know any company who sells hardware that has beta firmware on it.
making a rtm version of that firmware is not that strange to ask for i guess.. you would not buy a router f.e. with firmware that is full of bugs and keeps you from really utilizing the thing. somehow i find it hard to get that it takes 2 years of developing just to get the bugs out of the system. know what i mean...
Vera lite (1.5.622), 2x an-158/2, dead usb pl2302 rs-232, 2x greenwave 6 port, 4x Fibaro FGD211 v1.6, FGBS001, few FGS - 221, etc. AuthomationHD 3 for android :-)
Dutch & German translator http://wiki.micasaverde.com/index.php/Special:AllPages http://support.micasaverde.com http://domotica-shop.nl

Offline RichardTSchaefer

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #124 on: November 03, 2013, 07:42:32 am »
Quote
PLEG provides a LOT of missing power to Vera, but its interface is also rather unfriendly.(Sorry Richard)

I know! This is not a strength of mine.

Developing user interfaces is an art/science of it's own.  Everyone knows what they like ... that's not the same as knowing what the masses will like. I am always open/reactive to concrete suggestions on how to make things more user friendly.

Offline Da_JoJo

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #125 on: November 03, 2013, 09:54:09 am »
you see this user-interface problem with iphone and android too. if i get a digibete a android he will intuitively find out how to work with it , but with the iphone they first need to read half the manual before they get it to do what they want it to. eventhough they appear to have more or less the same interface.
the best way would be to have this test is by someone who doesnt have any technical skills or knowledge about the system and let this person do some basic stuff they would want it to do. soon enough you'll find that it could be done simpler and more logical..
for starters it would be really nice if one could find the vera on the network and be able to connect to it.
for example : i have a samsung tv and a windows 8 pc. when i turn on my tv and my pc it would boot to windows and the windows finds my tv and automaticly installs the UPnP device software for it so i can use it in mediaplayer to send a movie or mp3 to the tv and works flawless. the asus router also gets me a icon which i click and it goes to the router-settings page.
if i turn on the vera it would find a home-automation device called MiOS serialnr in networks and when i click this it gets me to a 404 error page not exist. i mean at least this basic stuff should work out of the box and not that hard to implement. its just a webpage. which points to the wrong page ffs... it would be nice if this works and the network device shows the name that u gave to the vera after having it setup.it would also be nice if there was a option to set the interface to advanced so that you can delete files on the vera itself and mess around with the advanced features a normal person would never bother with.
since mcv is reading all this stuff here.. why not make a new topic and share with them what we think could be done better or different and suggestions for user-friendlyness ?
« Last Edit: November 03, 2013, 10:18:35 am by Da_JoJo »
Vera lite (1.5.622), 2x an-158/2, dead usb pl2302 rs-232, 2x greenwave 6 port, 4x Fibaro FGD211 v1.6, FGBS001, few FGS - 221, etc. AuthomationHD 3 for android :-)
Dutch & German translator http://wiki.micasaverde.com/index.php/Special:AllPages http://support.micasaverde.com http://domotica-shop.nl

Offline amg0

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #126 on: November 03, 2013, 11:09:53 am »
@MCV,

as the author of IPhoneLocator plugin, send me a new VERA box (European standard) with a beta UI7 and I ll gladly help to make sure it works  ;) ;) ;)

Offline Aaron

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #127 on: November 03, 2013, 11:33:22 am »
the best way is to get a beta of UI7 to see what is already done, or not, and then make suggestions.

Richard pointed out correctly, which most people don't realized, is coders are rarely good designers. I was, long ago, a coder - and was not fantastic at i. But I'm a great designer. I have designed several UIs for touchscreens (years before iPhone was even a thought of), administrative UIs, global security models, and much more. Understanding (and breaking down) user workflow to easily consumable and logical use cases is needed. Most coders just code for set of outcomes, not thinking how a non-coder mind will need to understand it.

With PLEG, even with a EE degree & 15 years in enterprise computing as a consultant - it took me a few reads and questions to grap how it works. Clearly not ideal for the 'average' consumer.  With a UI coder, a designer, and some coding changes in PLEG, we could layer a GUI on top of PLEG that would make it a good Scene creator.

Anyway... this is all just talk at this point. We don't know if UI7 is just a new skin or really something better at the core.  I get my Almond + in January and I'm looking a Revolv, Staples Hub, and others.  MCV has 2 months to impress me or I'll be looking to jump ship - and I suspect they will see a sharp decline in sales as those competitors come to market strong.

Offline chixxi

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #128 on: November 03, 2013, 11:43:56 am »
We don't know if UI7 is just a new skin or really something better at the core.
Good question, I hope for the second.

...MCV has 2 months to impress me or I'll be looking to jump ship...
If there would be a good ship to jump to. But honestly, I haven't found any device which would make me replace my vera so far.
Developer of Plugins: Virtual Switch, Variable Container, Popcorn Hour Remote, Vacation Ghost. => PLUGINS HAVE BEEN UNPUBLISHED BY ME.

Offline Da_JoJo

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #129 on: November 03, 2013, 06:51:46 pm »
ow yeah the UI itself would really benefit if there where more options to make a nice GUI for plugins.. really good point. something like javascript or lua possibility to make own made buttons.. one should be able to put in his/her own buttons and the back-end should be able to work with these. wont break the allready existent back-end. it would just not be displayed and non-usable if the remote doesnt parse these new buttons and underlaying actions/services.

devices should be able to be put in different rooms at same time. instead of the dashboard the rooms could also be made like tabs so you could switch between them and be able to hide devices. in the rooms itself the devices should be separated by type.

overview per room, the beta one that exists is fairly useless and looks crappy

some way that vera can react on different alarm frames being send from z-wave sensors.

richards vera alerts and pleg , chixxi virtual switch and variable container should be standard implemented as well as notification hook

option for logs/events on a separate server/database

support for newer z-wave devices like a colorwheel for RGBW controller, a thermostate climate schedule, clock and support for stella-z 's direct control (perhaps its own device file so it actually going to work and doesn't have HVAC cooling settings which dont work anyway), multi-commands,
z-wave devices firmware update possibility

better documentation so we could at least try and understand how it works. a link on the setup page to the docs and forum opening in new tab/window

https and a more easy way to set the vera up through a webpage which you land on when u click the device on windows network section. password protected local lan port 3480 . parsed in the url itself over https connection. discussed allready and there is not really a solution for this that would fit the case.

possibility to control the vera lua/z-wave module etc. from a windows/linux machine so testing plugins can be easier. com plugin or something like that.

a setting for normal and advanced user.. normal show just the basic controls, advanced the more advanced options (like advanced tab) show also.

option for sensors to choose a device it would turn on for a 0 to XX minutes amount of time when triggered. like push doorbell would turn on the doorbell. alarm-sensor tripped would turn on alarm sirene. temp below XX degrees turn on heater. door-sensor tripped not-armed turn on light. toilet motion-sensor non-armed tripped turn on the toiletlight.

option to set a NTP server

option to remove the service/variable/value added in advanced tab of a device

implementation for tv's, bluray players and other UPnP devices
application to run on a samsung tv for remote control

update the forum to latest version and some way that there are country flags next to the name so we know where users are situated and thus can give em better advice for z-wave installations

bluetooth support for proximity

.. just some ideas
 and some thanx to MCV to bother to look into the suggestions/wishes we have and try and make us a better experience with our beloved Vera. without it we'd be still living in a stone cave. it's like having a wife.. sometimes you hate her when she does not cooperate and does stuff you're not happy with, but most of the time you want to hug and play with her and could not live without her ;D
« Last Edit: November 04, 2013, 12:17:11 pm by Da_JoJo »
Vera lite (1.5.622), 2x an-158/2, dead usb pl2302 rs-232, 2x greenwave 6 port, 4x Fibaro FGD211 v1.6, FGBS001, few FGS - 221, etc. AuthomationHD 3 for android :-)
Dutch & German translator http://wiki.micasaverde.com/index.php/Special:AllPages http://support.micasaverde.com http://domotica-shop.nl

Offline chixxi

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #130 on: November 05, 2013, 08:30:18 am »
Another tweet: https://twitter.com/VeraLovers/statuses/395668439282380801

Compared to what I experience in this forum MCV seems to be quite responsive on twitter.
Developer of Plugins: Virtual Switch, Variable Container, Popcorn Hour Remote, Vacation Ghost. => PLUGINS HAVE BEEN UNPUBLISHED BY ME.

Offline Aaron

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #131 on: November 05, 2013, 10:34:02 am »
Another tweet: https://twitter.com/VeraLovers/statuses/395668439282380801

Compared to what I experience in this forum MCV seems to be quite responsive on twitter.

posting that "something" (no info on benefits/features/actual date/etc) is coming in 6-momths is not at all useful or responsive. It looks like what we in corporate America call 'checking the box'... "Yes Mr Manager, per my yearly review goals I posted 3 twitter posts every 6 months."

Also notice that all of our suggestions/comments in the thread have gone without comment from MCV.

"UI7 is coming"... big woop.  I have 3 churches in a 1 mile radius from me and I see people walking carrying posters with VERY similar statements ;-)

Offline chixxi

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #132 on: November 06, 2013, 01:27:59 am »
1. With "responsive" I didn't mean they provide usefull information, but at least they react.
2. The tweet is not about "something" but specifically about a "new UI".
3. I have been with MCV so long and waited so many days/month/years for responses that I now even appreciate tiny pieces of information like these.  :'(
4. I have given up the "aggressive strategy", no one cares at MCV so I might as well spare my nerves.

Anyway, I am excited fo whatever is comming whenever it's comming.  ;D
Developer of Plugins: Virtual Switch, Variable Container, Popcorn Hour Remote, Vacation Ghost. => PLUGINS HAVE BEEN UNPUBLISHED BY ME.

Offline Da_JoJo

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #133 on: November 06, 2013, 09:16:25 pm »
mind that UI7 is comming to NEW devices and we are going to be on UI6 so we have an idea where this is going :-)
Vera lite (1.5.622), 2x an-158/2, dead usb pl2302 rs-232, 2x greenwave 6 port, 4x Fibaro FGD211 v1.6, FGBS001, few FGS - 221, etc. AuthomationHD 3 for android :-)
Dutch & German translator http://wiki.micasaverde.com/index.php/Special:AllPages http://support.micasaverde.com http://domotica-shop.nl

Offline Aaron

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Re: CEDIA 2013 - MiCasaVerde changes name to Vera and suggest UI7
« Reply #134 on: November 06, 2013, 10:48:16 pm »
mind that UI7 is comming to NEW devices and we are going to be on UI6 so we have an idea where this is going :-)

Not sure how you 'know' this... but any statement to what/when/how is irrelevant until something is actually released. I hope you are not holding your breath. 


Want to read something funny...
http://wiki.micasaverde.com/index.php/Luup_Press_Release#Cross_platform_for_OEM_use
... offering cash for plugins, back in 2011. I'd wager a bet they did not actually go through with much, if any, of that.

I'm not worried about UI7 or UI9999 ... none of it will matter soon enough. In the next 6-10 months we will see systems, for about the same price as Vera, that do the as much, or more, without all the hacks and code we need for Vera. Luckily it will be easier to recreate what I have in Vera in the new systems that it will be to try migrate to the next 'slightly less' sh!tty version of Vera's OS.