Newbie questions

Posted on
Thu Nov 02, 2017 3:23 pm
Colly offline
Posts: 320
Joined: Jan 16, 2016
Location: Ireland

Re: Newbie questions

Hi Dave,

Just a general question which I didn't reckon was worth starting a new topic. Do the device states hold if internet was down for a prolonged period? I'm just thinking about how I'm using the forecast low to start my underfloor heating at different times and as such if it holds the last updated value then that's fine. If not I guess a workaround would be to write it to a variable. It's an unlikely event but nevertheless worth considering in my case.

Posted on
Thu Nov 02, 2017 3:51 pm
DaveL17 offline
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Posts: 5262
Joined: Aug 20, 2013
Location: Chicago, IL, USA

Re: Newbie questions

Hi Colly - with very few exceptions (and maybe never--I'd have to audit the code to know that for sure) no states are updated if the plugin can't download new data. I have several checks installed:

  • If the plugin can't reach the WUnderground servers, it will change the Indigo UI device state value to "no comm" to indicate that there is no active communication with the servers.
  • If the WUnderground servers provide data that are older than we already have (it happens) I don't update any of the states because we want to go with the last known "good" value.
  • There is a plugin preference called "Skip Update if Data Are Estimated" (or something to that effect) which works off a key in the data WU provides. If WU says the data for that location are estimated--that is based on near-by data and WU's own algorithms--you can elect to skip an update. This is turned off by default if I remember correctly.
  • Lastly, in some instances, WU will provide a value like [-99] or [--] which indicates that WU doesn't know what a good value is. In those instances, I provide [-99]. I used to provide a string that said the data were no good, but that broke people's triggers and scripts because they were expecting a rational number.

So I would say that you should be safe but you might want to put a lower boundary on temperature of -99F (or -57C) because we know that is a bogus value. If the outside temperature is going to actually be -57C, you probably have other things to worry about than cold floors! I would keep an eye on your stuff for a while to make sure that it works for you the way you expect. WU data have been known to be temperamental; I've added many traps to capture those cases, but there may be things that I haven't anticipated.

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Posted on
Thu Nov 02, 2017 4:42 pm
Colly offline
Posts: 320
Joined: Jan 16, 2016
Location: Ireland

Re: Newbie questions

Thanks for the comprehensive response. It's working nicely for me at the moment. I've 3 different schedules that start early or later depending on the low forecast. I plan to incorporate my own local weather station over the winter (not sure which one though!) so that will help I guess, although I'm guessing I won't get a forecast only real time temperature. So if I'm understanding you correct I should either trigger a notification if the value is -57C or run a default schedule just so my toes aren't too cold the following morning? :)

Posted on
Thu Nov 02, 2017 7:29 pm
DaveL17 offline
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Posts: 5262
Joined: Aug 20, 2013
Location: Chicago, IL, USA

Re: Newbie questions

Colly - yes. I think you'd be safe with something along the lines of this (doesn't have to be this literal of course):

Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 8.24.38 PM.png
Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 8.24.38 PM.png (39.83 KiB) Viewed 361 times


It would keep the floor heater from firing when the data are questionable.

I came here to drink milk and kick ass....and I've just finished my milk.

[My Plugins] - [My Forums]

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