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    Dashboards feedback

    Starting a thread to discuss the new Dashboards feature. Dashboards allows you to create customized views of your devices and events.

    You will find detailed instructions in the following guides:Sneak peek:

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    #2
    Sounds fantastic this is everything I had hoped of HS Buddy when I originally tried it a couple years ago, and then everything I had hoped of HS Mobile, now delivered and MORE. I can't wait to give it a whirl tonight πŸ‘
    ​
    What the actual?!? When I make a sarcastic remark or joke it is moderated/deleted.
    But you specifically go out of your way to label multiple HS4 issues that cause data loss/crash of HS4 to be "grumbles".
    I can't even begin to put into words how offensive this is.

    Comment


      #3
      I have given this a whirl with some quick proof of concept widgets on a 9" iPad.

      Firstly the ability to precisely resize and position items on the dashboard is fantastic and exactly how I had expected this to work in another product. Well done!

      Second can I say it is SUPER awesome that animated icons actually animate! I have some cool ones I have made such as spinning fans, contents flashing inside washing machine, etc and it is fantastic to see them in action!

      So continuing on from my other post I do have some suggestions

      1. Can we have two versions of the Control widget - the current one with title bar, and another that resembles the Information widget with no title bar and instead has the device's icon and name/value. In both cases buttons appear below if enabled and exist.

      2. If a widget is set to "toggle" if touched can we have a sideways iOS toggle. If used on normal version of control widget it would be larger and entered underneath - if used on the second version of control widget then it could be on the right side of the text (the device icon being on the left side).

      3. Information widgets to have TWO Show Icon options - Show Small Icon (which is what the current one does), but also a Show Large Icon. This new option would stretch the icon to be nearly the same size as the widget - with the name shown above (if turned on) and the value shown below (if turned on). Some device's the icon is the more useful information - and as you know for my solar setup I would like to make graph icons for the status.

      4. Fourth mode for widgets - device mode. This would show it exactly the same as your devices pane, except resizable. Eg For my custom Tesla virtual device the way it appears on your devices pane is exactly how I want it on my dashboard (except resized to be less wide). Bonus points if the battery icon could have the percentage alongside it too (like HS Mobile).
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      5. Fifth option for widget title - custom. This way "Watts" could be renamed to be Washing Machine for example - as the name isn't always relevant to what is in HS.

      6. More flexibility with sizing and positioning of items on dashboard. The layout current snaps around a lot, you can't move items out into white space (height wise they always need to snap to something), and you can't push item to be directly against another (in my screenshot below I created several widgets for the same device to try and present everything I needed, but they can't directly join so not obvious they are the same thing).

      7. Sliders are hardcoded with a lightbulb - which you'll notice is not correct for my blinds

      8. Is there a way to hide the sheet title bar, and the app title bar? Ideally I want the entire screen to be consumed by only the dashboard. Maybe the burger (three line) menu icon could be super imposed in the corner and tapping it makes that top bar appear so you can access the three dots on other side). Possibly an option to turn on this "auto hide" feature?

      9. Cameras on dashboard? Or at least I couldn't work out how to add them

      10. Dark mode! Wife acceptance factor depends upon putting an end to the massive bright white light from the 12" iPad in the kitchen.

      Note that this is merely a list of suggestions for improvement - what you have delivered in version 1 of your dashboard is insanely awesome. You've totally exceeded another product in just your first prototype/beta, you should be super stoked. Heck for that matter, my first use of HS Mobile (and thereafter) was crash after crash, bug after bug. Not a single crash with yours - couple of weird bugs (such as when I created on 9" iPad I could resize to hearts content, but when I backed up the dashboard and copied to my 13" iPad resizing wouldn't work until I had relaunched a few times... odd but I couldn't reproduce steps and not something I'm phased about ATM). The ideas above are tweaks that will help make this even more killer

      Note the rough playing around I did below is from my 9" iPad, the actual iPad I will be setting this up on is a 12" iPad so lots more space, but it helps show some of the points I raised above such as alignment limitations, not being able to join related devices together, the way my virtual device appears on dashboard compared to devices pane, etc. That said, what I already quickly whipped up in these few minutes is pretty darn good!
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      ​
      What the actual?!? When I make a sarcastic remark or joke it is moderated/deleted.
      But you specifically go out of your way to label multiple HS4 issues that cause data loss/crash of HS4 to be "grumbles".
      I can't even begin to put into words how offensive this is.

      Comment


        #4
        Just realised the "device" mode isn't 100% perfect for the dashboard - it is missing the control buttons but sooooo close
        ​
        What the actual?!? When I make a sarcastic remark or joke it is moderated/deleted.
        But you specifically go out of your way to label multiple HS4 issues that cause data loss/crash of HS4 to be "grumbles".
        I can't even begin to put into words how offensive this is.

        Comment


          #5
          Tillsy - Thank you so much for the detailed feedback! These are all great ideas. I appreciate the time to write in detail each of the recommendations. Here's a few quick round of responses, but I may reach out with some clarifications and/or questions in the future
          1. I had a variant of the Control widget that showed the icon/name on top but as I kept adding options for the Information widget I realized it would be easier to keep control down to the buttons/sliders only. I've added a backlog item to look into this again.
            1. As a temporary workaround, it's possible to have 2 widgets, Information + Control, for the same device, with the same width, on top of each other. This will achieve a similar experience.
          2. Good idea, added to the backlog (toggle icon)
          3. If an Information widget has the title be set to "Icon only", it will resize the icon to match the size of the widget. In my tests this has worked properly, does it behave the same way for you? I will add to backlog to include an option to add extra information.
            1. Similar to #1, a workaround to include name/value of the device would be to put another Information widget on top, without icon, showing name and value, and with the same width as the icon widget.
          4. This 4th mode of Information widget is in the backlog too! It will likely be achieved via 2 new options for the Information widget: a) show related devices icons and b) show battery status. Good idea about showing the percentage in text as well - added to the backlog too!
          5. Custom title for all widget types in the backlog, near the top of the list.
          6. Initially I allowed widgets to 'float' around the dashboard but in my manual testing it proved problematic when moving widgets around (widgets would get pushed out of place easily). I've added an item to the backlog to bring it back as an option.
          7. Sliders currently only support 2 sets of icons: light bulbs and heat/cold for thermostats. I have a backlog item to add icons for fans as well. I hadn't thought about blinds though - I will add a backlog item for that too.
          8. Added to the backlog an option to hide section names as well as the app title bar.
          9. Camera widgets aren't available yet but definitely in the backlog, near the top of the list.
          10. Dark mode is also in the backlog! I'm afraid the amount of work for that is not trivial, which is why it hasn't made it to the top of the list - but I will take a closer look.
          Thank you again for trying out the feature and reporting back so quickly!

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by avargaskun View Post
            As a temporary workaround, it's possible to have 2 widgets, Information + Control, for the same device, with the same width, on top of each other. This will achieve a similar experience.
            Yes if you look at my sample screenshot above I did that for my Living Room Lights dimmer - so I used one to show the status and one for the controls. But the two widgets don't join together so it doesn't look right. But yes workaround in meantime for sure



            Originally posted by avargaskun View Post
            If an Information widget has the title be set to "Icon only", it will resize the icon to match the size of the widget. In my tests this has worked properly, does it behave the same way for you? I will add to backlog to include an option to add extra information.
            1. Similar to #1, a workaround to include name/value of the device would be to put another Information widget on top, without icon, showing name and value, and with the same width as the icon widget.
            Oooooh I didn't notice that, have just had a play and yes "icon only" resizes to size of widget - awesome! And yes, in meantime can workaround labels by having a widget above and below with relevant info - but per above the widgets won't actually join together so will look a little odd. One other suggestion I didn't think of - when you add support for showing the title and value, just like you have options for "what" to show in the title the value should be configurable too... in some cases you want the "value", but in other cases the "string" is actually more relevant for a dashboard. Some devices both are the same, but for others these two can be quite different,



            Originally posted by avargaskun View Post
            Initially I allowed widgets to 'float' around the dashboard but in my manual testing it proved problematic when moving widgets around (widgets would get pushed out of place easily). I've added an item to the backlog to bring it back as an option.
            As a programmer I know exactly what you are saying in terms of the complications here. The problem with the "snap to grid" type approach though is it forces each widget to be aligned/spaced identically - so the above two multi-widget solutions for example mean that two widgets trying to act as one look the same as two separate widgets, so it is confusing. So if I had three widgets all related to say a kitchen light, they look the same as three unrelated widgets... they're all bunched directly together whether they are related or not. If the layout were completely free, even overlapping, it would also mean you could not only space things out but a future suggestion (which I didn't want to bother you with until the core stuff is done) would be generic widgets such as borders, text labels (free text, HS variables such as sunset/sunrise, heck one could even put in HS variables that resolve to device values so that these labels could then be overlaid anywhere/anywhere, etc. At the moment the snapping fights any attempt I make to lay/space various widgets together/apart.


            Originally posted by avargaskun View Post
            Sliders currently only support 2 sets of icons: light bulbs and heat/cold for thermostats. I have a backlog item to add icons for fans as well. I hadn't thought about blinds though - I will add a backlog item for that too.
            Could the icons each end of the slider be generic then, or perhaps 0% written one side and 100% written on the other. Personally though I'm not sure anything needs to be either side - a dashboard by its nature is going to have a lot of information on it so could be adding unnecessary clutter (to HS Mobile's credit I notice it doesn't have icons either side but the slider makes sense what it is doing).



            Originally posted by avargaskun View Post
            Dark mode is also in the backlog! I'm afraid the amount of work for that is not trivial, which is why it hasn't made it to the top of the list - but I will take a closer look.
            Understood - in that case leave it to last. What you have created in this beta is amazing and I am very excited about its potential - better to polish it off first and then add the dark mode after (likewise with one of the future features I hinted at above that I haven't started listing for you yet - other interface elements such as borders, labels, etc... stuff that will make it even better, but not a priority against tweaking up the core functionality).


            Also one feature I'd like you to consider after all these tweaks - charging for the plugin. When I initially played with HS Buddy a couple years ago I was blown away by its functionality - events, devices, everything.... suits many people, but for me I needed a custom dashboard as I have so many devices and just want to show a specific subset and layout of them. This new dashboard feature now nails it for me too. Whichever aspect people value from HS Buddy, it is a fantastic product that is so well written it really should be a paid product. Even if it were just $10 if you don't want to scare people off - but honestly with the trial period HS have for plugins this will still enable customers to play with HS Buddy, realise how awesome it is, and then buy. Please consider as I'd like to pay you for this if you are able to nail these things - what I am going to create is going to be quite right, rivalling what some use HSTouch for, so I'd even be happy for you to use my finished screenshot in your app/plugin screenshots to up-sell with.
            ​
            What the actual?!? When I make a sarcastic remark or joke it is moderated/deleted.
            But you specifically go out of your way to label multiple HS4 issues that cause data loss/crash of HS4 to be "grumbles".
            I can't even begin to put into words how offensive this is.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Tillsy View Post
              Could the icons each end of the slider be generic then, or perhaps 0% written one side and 100% written on the other. Personally though I'm not sure anything needs to be either side - a dashboard by its nature is going to have a lot of information on it so could be adding unnecessary clutter (to HS Mobile's credit I notice it doesn't have icons either side but the slider makes sense what it is doing).
              Actually another thought - what about a "-" one side and a "+" on the other. This would make it clear which direction the slider should be moved, plus if the - and + were tappable would provide granular control. Must admit I have sometimes tried to get a light to a particular brightness and when you have got it closer but are trying to make a tiny change "finger multi-touch" is a bit of a pain to grab and move a slider by a tiny amount - you need to move it by a bigger amount to get it moving and then remember where you were to get it back and then make a fine adjustment (end result being you move the slider to approximately where you want, then make 5-8 adjustments there after trying to perfect it - hence for the living room I have created that extra "night" button that immediately takes it to a set brightness because it's just too annoying).
              ​
              What the actual?!? When I make a sarcastic remark or joke it is moderated/deleted.
              But you specifically go out of your way to label multiple HS4 issues that cause data loss/crash of HS4 to be "grumbles".
              I can't even begin to put into words how offensive this is.

              Comment


                #8
                This is fantastic and got hooked playing with it over lunch. Really nice work and did not run into a glitch. In some test screens I did it would be nice to remove the header & border around devices as I used the section name to provide context / scope. This might make it look better and gain back screen space. This should be an option of course to render the header and border around devices as not applicable to all cases.

                Another option which might exist but have not discovered it is being able to setup the dashboard on one device and β€œload it or import it” in another device. The same actually applies for Devices and Events favorite configurations.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Another idea / wish for the device history, is to be able to leverage / integrate with the Device History plugin to display device history charts and stats. The Device History plugin provides history granularity per device (among other things) and not system wide like in HSBuddy.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by pcp View Post
                    This is fantastic and got hooked playing with it over lunch. Really nice work and did not run into a glitch. In some test screens I did it would be nice to remove the header & border around devices as I used the section name to provide context / scope. This might make it look better and gain back screen space. This should be an option of course to render the header and border around devices as not applicable to all cases.

                    Another option which might exist but have not discovered it is being able to setup the dashboard on one device and β€œload it or import it” in another device. The same actually applies for Devices and Events favorite configurations.
                    I like the border toggle idea - combined with possibly "drawing" a hollow border on the dashboard perhaps, and maybe even labels that can contain HS variables, this would provide a lot of flexibility in creating a "custom" widget that has lots of elements combined together.

                    In regards to copying dashboards between devices - you can definitely do this via the backup mechanism. I transferred my test dashboard from my 9" iPad to my iPhone XS and then to my 12" iPad, so three devices with one lot of work πŸ‘
                    ​
                    What the actual?!? When I make a sarcastic remark or joke it is moderated/deleted.
                    But you specifically go out of your way to label multiple HS4 issues that cause data loss/crash of HS4 to be "grumbles".
                    I can't even begin to put into words how offensive this is.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by pcp View Post
                      Another idea / wish for the device history, is to be able to leverage / integrate with the Device History plugin to display device history charts and stats. The Device History plugin provides history granularity per device (among other things) and not system wide like in HSBuddy.
                      A future HS4 update will be providing history inbuilt so HS Buddy could leverage that at a future time. This would be great for showing a small graph of power usage for a device or solar generation...
                      ​
                      What the actual?!? When I make a sarcastic remark or joke it is moderated/deleted.
                      But you specifically go out of your way to label multiple HS4 issues that cause data loss/crash of HS4 to be "grumbles".
                      I can't even begin to put into words how offensive this is.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        avargaskun this is a great start, I played with it a bit and can see this replacing my Imperihome dashboard evenually. A few comments/suggestions...

                        *Bordering sections, general layout, etc*
                        Take a look at the screenshots shown here https://play.google.com/store/apps/d....iot.wallpanel
                        and here
                        -- create a 'section' with a single border around it, not each individual widget. Makes it really nice for many uses.
                        -- widgets with different layouts; such as icon in middle shown here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/d...homehabit.view
                        -- setting custom widget text: many of my HS3 devices are named something that is too long for display on a small widget, or not named properly for display due to needing to overcome HS3s lack of ability to categorize properly for filter/use/events/etc.
                        -- set custom icons. Imperihome can use any icon source. I use https://play.google.com/store/apps/d...icons.iconpack as it has over 6k very well done icons and is updated monthly.

                        *Loading, backup, import, etc*
                        Here's what would make creating dashboards WAY faster and easier, and provide everything centralized.
                        -- Create a text template and import it. Using a computer to quickly type in (copy/past, etc) is WAY faster and easier than using a small screen to click/tap/drag/etc 1000s of times.
                        -- store and custom name the text configs on the HS server, with HSbuddy being able to import (download) it directly

                        Comment


                          #13
                          This looks promising, especially after Imperihomes bankrupsy..
                          Give me camera-widgets in next update, and I am all in

                          EDIT: Oh, and perhaps a lock function, to prevent kids from doing... KIDs stuff..!

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Thanks all for the feedback and suggestions!

                            Last week I was busy wrapping up a feature for HSBuddy: Server Profiles. Shortly I will be back on Dashboards, hopefully with an updated version within the next couple weeks.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Thanks Ltek - I have captured your suggestions in the backlog for Dashboards.

                              Originally posted by Ltek View Post
                              -- set custom icons. Imperihome can use any icon source.
                              There is a way to do this, but I realized I never documented it clearly. If you install the latest version of the HSBuddy plug-in on your server, it will add a new configuration section on the plug-in menu, called 'Media'. From that page you can make any existing folder under your [HomeSeer]\html folder available to the app for browsing icons (by default, the standard HomeSeer and HSBuddy icon paths are available).

                              Comment

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