HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

Posted on
Thu Dec 31, 2020 8:34 pm
Umtauscher offline
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Location: Cologne, Germany

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

Espressomatic wrote:
Well, good luck, and fingers crossed we see the author back.

I think not.

I don't share your ethusiasm about Indigo. It's not the payment that will break it's neck, but the lack of innovation.
Supporting a few more z-wave devices after one year is really not enough for me. Indigo only runs on Apple hardware and even still has an iOS app that could at best be called a debuggung interface. Even today we don't have a proper webserver that would allow such a basic thing as a slider - not that we have to do our designs on our own.

I have been supporting Indigo for some time now and it seems the only inovations that Indigo is implementing comes from capable users who are not afraid to invest time and manpower to develop the most valueable plugings - but not from the firm we pay every year.
I will miss the support of colorado4wheeler. He has made more than 8 plugins in the past years and he will be missed.
Thanks for your hard work colorado4wheeler.
Cheers

P.S: The least what Matt and Jay could do is keep your plugins alive.

Posted on
Fri Jan 01, 2021 10:30 am
Espressomatic offline
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Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

The only company that has made a material and market difference in Home Automation in the past 10 years, if you'd like to define that as innovation, is Apple. Period. As far as the Open Source communities around HA and projects like OpenHAB, that's a bunch of loose pieces motivated by people who prefer to play on their computers all day rather than live with a finished project. The overarching goals in all those projects is to never be done, to never be stable.

That's not what I want. I see the two biggest gaping holes in Indigo as follows and both directly tied to this very thread and sub-forum:

1. No first-party Homekit support. IMO, Homekit support is critical. It's the only commercial platform that has any real legs. It's not "the best" - but that's not the point.
2. Lack of regular, scheduled and timely device support releases. I really want to see a monthly Z-Wave device roll-up release schedule. Like clockwork.

The rest, like WebUI's I don't care about being first-party. See Homekit. I have stability with Indigo. I can go literally 12 months or longer without having to touch Indigo or the machine running it. My home just hums along. It "just works."

Posted on
Fri Jan 01, 2021 11:02 am
FlyingDiver offline
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Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

Espressomatic wrote:
1. No first-party Homekit support. IMO, Homekit support is critical. It's the only commercial platform that has any real legs. It's not "the best" - but that's not the point.


Unless Apple changes their stance on software-only HomeKit clients, this is unlikely to change. Yeah, homebridge does it, but it's an "uncertified" hack. Or partner with someone that's building a "generic" HomeKit device that can act as a bridge. Not sure if that's possible or would be able to be certified either.

joe (aka FlyingDiver)
my plugins: http://forums.indigodomo.com/viewforum.php?f=177

Posted on
Fri Jan 01, 2021 11:04 am
DaveL17 offline
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Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

I'm convinced that there is no "Best" solution for everyone because there is no single target to shoot for. No single flavor is better or worse than any other flavor. No need better or worse than any other. Matt & Jay have to balance what's most important to the most users against other things like OS and hardware lifecycles and having a viable business to put food on the table. It's a lot to balance and it necessarily involves compromise. I used to tell my teams that the best possible compromise is when no one walks away from the table completely satisfied.

I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in native Smart Speaker integration in Indigo. Period. Until someone markets a device that functions without the cloud, I will not use one. BUT, that doesn't mean that I don't understand that this is a valuable feature to many, many people. Do I think this is wasted effort by M&J because it doesn't serve my interests? Not at all.

I use Indigo Touch to bump a thermostat here and trigger the occasional action there (like cycling a cable modem). I do wish IT had widgets, but I can use Home Remote for that. Still, that doesn't mean that others' wish for more IT functionality isn't valid or worthwhile.

The things it seems most users want are of little interest to me, and that's just fine. I think Indigo is the best product on the market for what I want it to be and I don't see that changing any time soon.

Let's not forget that 2020 was a complete bugger of a year (and that's putting it nicely). We should all understand that.

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

[My Plugins] - [My Forums]

Posted on
Fri Jan 01, 2021 1:16 pm
neilk offline
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Location: Reading, UK

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

I think my biggest concern is the amount of engineering effort that is dictated by issues outside of the guys control, and it is arguably deflecting time and energy from the areas that are in need of functionality improvements both native and in extensibility. I cannot see that changing too much with the Apple platform (and Apple make it really hard to sustain with QA on releases and being almost exclusively end user focussed), as I am sure the work necessary for Python 3 will be huge, and arguably not directly deliver a spike in capability (don't get me wrong I know it is essential and will make it easier to utilise some Python 3 projects natively to add plugins). It think even the most ardent fan would admit to being a little underwhelmed by 7.5 (and at the same time really appreciating the improvements in Z wave performance). I do think the releases blog is really helpful, and recognises this and of course the challenges of 2020 and I welcome the transparency about the plans for the future.

I agree the combination of the support from Matt, Jay and the community, the quality of the core engineering and stability and the extensibility through plugins is an unbeatable and great value combination. A little more sizzle without sacrificing the substance would help, and I am open to helping if I can.

Neil

Posted on
Fri Jan 01, 2021 4:10 pm
7rdr7 offline
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Location: Washington DC Metro

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

I am committed to Indigo. Why?
- Stability - Apple is stable and secure, and Indigo is stable. It's a lot of work keeping up with Apple, but it's worth it IMHO.
- Simplicity - This is a very simple platform to use.
- Device compatibility - Indigo does a good job of staying up to date with new devices, specifically leading innovators (Inovelli, Qubino, etc.). Although, quarterly device updates would be nice.
- HomeKit support - HomeKit Bridge has been a key reason for my loyalty (Thank-you C4W). I understand that licensing/certification is an issue for Indigo Domotics, but we need to figure this out. The Indigo iOS app is a decent troubleshooting tool, but lacks security, and will never approach the power and security of the Home app.
Really appreciate the performance improvements in 7.5!

Suggestion: The premier plugin developers (based upon community plugin utilization) should get a pass on annual software maintenance, even if my costs go up. I benefit from their efforts....

Posted on
Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:34 pm
Espressomatic offline
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Joined: Dec 30, 2018

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

For "giggles" I just took a fresh look at HA (that's HOME ASSISTANT) this weekend. Installing as a VM is just about the easiest way to get it going, even easier than putting it on a Pi if you already have a VM-capable platform deployed.

Apart from that, the product/project (HOME ASSISTANT) is a giant wet bag of hammers and a good 5 years from being even remotely usable in the real world (used by and in a consumer scenario, even if set up by a dedicated "pro"). And that's IF and only IF they keep moving everything over to UI and completely get rid of YAML. What a nightmare. They're in a perpetual competition with OpenHAB to make the most convoluted Rube Goldberg machine. It's painfully obvious neither project has firm direction nor are they run by people who have a fundamental grasp of what Home Automation should (or could) be.
Last edited by Espressomatic on Sun Jan 03, 2021 9:29 am, edited 2 times in total.

Posted on
Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:38 pm
wikner offline
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Joined: Nov 02, 2003

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

Suggestion: The premier plugin developers (based upon community plugin utilization) should get a pass on annual software maintenance, even if my costs go up. I benefit from their efforts....

Better yet:, they should earn money for their development efforts. The effort necessary to understand the plugin environment and actually code the plugin is considerable. I know because I have tried 3 times and failed to muster the necessary effort. I would be happy to pay one-time fees or even a subscription for some of the most useful plugins. Indigo should set up a store (and even take a cut for their effort in developing and maintaining the plug-in infrastructure).

There's nothing like being paid to keep workers happy. Contrariwise, there's nothing like not being paid, for considerable effort, to make someone give up.

That's why I was happy when Indigo went to a subscription model. It gave me more confidence that it would continue to function. Before that I was, frankly, worried that I had not spent enough money on it, and that Perceptive Automation might go under. I have thousands of dollars of connected devices in my house and in my disabled father's house, some of them unique and highly customized, all run by what is, in my opinion, a relatively inexpensive piece of software. There is no way that I could have put together the system of motion sensors, pressure sensors, sirens, doorbells, and messaging systems that I have in my father's house; they are helping to keep him "independent" and out of a nursing home (which, by the way, costs hundreds of thousands of dollars per year). No system of which I am aware, other than Indigo, has the customization to allow the user to invent his own system and modify it on the fly as new needs arise. It is far from a "wet bag of hammers".

I also disagree strongly with someone's statement that the iOS Indigo app is suitable only for debugging. Both my wife and I use it multiple times/day for routine automation tasks. It is extremely and routinely useful and convenient; and it is easily customizable on the fly.

Posted on
Sun Jan 03, 2021 2:51 am
neilk offline
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Joined: Jul 13, 2015
Location: Reading, UK

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

Better yet:, they should earn money for their development effort


Like you I fully agree with the subscription model but I suspect (and it is true for me) many do not want to be paid as that would then set expectations that may not be good for me. I built my first plugin based on a need I had, and I am more than happy to share if someone else finds it useful. I do it as a hobby and to be different from my day job and have no interest in earning money from it (I do donate any energy supplier referrals I get to charity).The things I have done have been pretty simple and on the margins rather than being arguably “core” and maybe some of those could be “outsourced” but generally the developers do it for none financial reasons.

Posted on
Sun Jan 03, 2021 9:31 am
Espressomatic offline
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Joined: Dec 30, 2018

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

wikner wrote:
No system of which I am aware, other than Indigo, has the customization to allow the user to invent his own system and modify it on the fly as new needs arise. It is far from a "wet bag of hammers".


Indigo is great, which is why I had to comment on Home Assistant (the wet bag of hammers) that was brought up by the author of this plugin, C4W, in his GitHub update. It's a horrible foundation layered with a deplorable user experience.

Posted on
Mon Jan 04, 2021 9:06 am
wikner offline
Posts: 186
Joined: Nov 02, 2003

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

Ah. I misunderstood.
I also understand that people code for love and appreciation. But moods change. For some of my dad's infrastructure I rely on certain Indigo plugins whose authors have explicitly stated that they have day jobs and can't respond in a timely fashion to bug reports or feature requests. There is also considerable variation in the quality of the coding of these plugins. For one that I use (I'm not telling) I had to go in and manually edit the Python code to make it work for me. All this makes me nervous.

Posted on
Mon Jan 04, 2021 3:24 pm
matt (support) offline
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Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

neilk wrote:
Better yet:, they should earn money for their development effort


Like you I fully agree with the subscription model but I suspect (and it is true for me) many do not want to be paid as that would then set expectations that may not be good for me. I built my first plugin based on a need I had, and I am more than happy to share if someone else finds it useful. I do it as a hobby and to be different from my day job and have no interest in earning money from it (I do donate any energy supplier referrals I get to charity).The things I have done have been pretty simple and on the margins rather than being arguably “core” and maybe some of those could be “outsourced” but generally the developers do it for none financial reasons.

When we originally rolled out the Plugin Store page we asked some of the plugin developers if they had an interest in offering paid plugins (via an App Store model) and, if I remember correctly, the strong consensus at the time was that they just wanted to offer their plugins for free. If or when that changes we'll definitely consider revisiting it. Creating the infrastructure to pay out developers would take some time/effort, but if enough plugin developers are interested that would get bumped up higher on our priority list. We definitely know that developing (and supporting!) plugins takes a lot of time and want to support the developers in whatever ways we can.

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Posted on
Mon Jan 04, 2021 3:33 pm
FlyingDiver offline
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Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

I retired 13 years ago (while still under 50). If I was charging for plugins, then I'd be obligated to fix them with some published SLA. That sounds way too much like work to me. ;)

On the immediate topic, I might be willing to fix bugs in some of C4W's plugins, like Device Extensions. But HBK scares me.

joe (aka FlyingDiver)
my plugins: http://forums.indigodomo.com/viewforum.php?f=177

Posted on
Mon Jan 04, 2021 3:41 pm
roquej offline
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HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

And a lot of us appreciate what you do! Thank you!

JP


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro

Posted on
Wed Jan 06, 2021 11:45 am
rlesperance offline
Posts: 273
Joined: Dec 01, 2004
Location: Québec, Canada

Re: HomeKit Bridge's Future, Etc

Hello,

I have been using Indigo for years now and what I appreciate the most is the friendly and efficient support that I get from Matt and Jay. I am not an Indigo hobbyist like most of you here and I am still living very happy with a X10 legacy system that works for real and without any problem. Any problem that I have encountered was my fault or the fault of some dying components.

That being said, still working with X10, I would appreciate for Indigo to be integrated in some way with Apple's Home app in a supported, stable and secure way. I tried the HomeKit bridge and it did not work out of the box. I tried to see what wass wrong but was not able to get it to work.

Is there an assurance that Indigo has or will integrate Apple's new app professionally ?

Thanks.

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