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Could A Hub Like Polisys or Hubitat Completely Replace Homeseer?


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#16 pete_c

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 08:39 AM

Tried to edit /  fix the above just now...

 

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It's the code inserts.


#17 upstatemike

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 08:58 AM

I am a consumer level person who just wants to connect a bunch of prefab building blocks to create the solutions I need.

 

Aren't you already doing this? 

 

You have all of the pieces already. 

The pieces I have do not do everything I want to do yet.

 

I am always looking for better, simpler, more reliable, more scalable ways of doing things.

 

I'm trying to strike a balance that avoids a system that has single points of failure while at the same time not creating something so complex that I am constantly fixing or updating some aspect of it (I would rather spend my time implementing new ideas than maintaining the existing stuff.)



#18 pete_c

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 11:40 AM

Understood.
 
Here the base automation is fine as always.  Base automation is mostly control of lighting using UPB. (wall switches).  It works and I never watch it or touch it.
 
Security is all wired with no wireless.  It works and I never touch it or watch it.

I do use the hard wired security sensors for automation.  (it is low on the WAF though)
 
Everything else in the base automation really is just fluff that is a nice to have but not really necessary. (Thermostat, temperature sensors in every room in the house, Zoned audio and well remote control via Alexa or phone or the 15 Wintel touchscreens, Omnitouchscreens, et al)
 
The tinkering is just that.  It has to be done without interupting normal day to day base automation.

#19 ano

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 12:57 PM

The pieces I have do not do everything I want to do yet.

 

I am always looking for better, simpler, more reliable, more scalable ways of doing things.

 

I'm trying to strike a balance that avoids a system that has single points of failure while at the same time not creating something so complex that I am constantly fixing or updating some aspect of it (I would rather spend my time implementing new ideas than maintaining the existing stuff.)

If you have your "requirements" then you will spend your whole life trying to piece together something that will meet them. It will never happen.  Instead, look at the new technology out there, pick some that might work, and start building out from there. 

 

Today using some very cheap pieces, like hubs, and Amazon Echos, you can do just incredible things. With these few pieces I can control all my lights and locks, WITH MYVOICE, I can change channels on my TV with my voice, I can give TTS messages through my house, I can update my shopping list with my voice. I can play any music in any room by just asking. And almost daily there are new features. For example, Echos can now monitor the house for glass breakage, and notify my remotely if that occurs, and they can monitor my smoke alarms and notify me if they go off.  The cost to add these features? $0.

 

While I can't do what my 20 year old home automation system can do, it can do so much more. Times change.



#20 upstatemike

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 01:37 PM

If you have your "requirements" then you will spend your whole life trying to piece together something that will meet them. It will never happen. 

I am a little more optimistic. If you define what you want then at least you know what to look for and what to avoid.

 

Instead, look at the new technology out there, pick some that might work, and start building out from there. 

Pretty much what I have been doing since the mid 70s.

 

Today using some very cheap pieces, like hubs, and Amazon Echos, you can do just incredible things. With these few pieces I can control all my lights and locks, WITH MYVOICE, I can change channels on my TV with my voice, I can give TTS messages through my house, I can update my shopping list with my voice. I can play any music in any room by just asking. And almost daily there are new features. For example, Echos can now monitor the house for glass breakage, and notify my remotely if that occurs, and they can monitor my smoke alarms and notify me if they go off.  The cost to add these features? $0.

I currently have 36 Echos deployed in my house so I will be leveraging them to accomplish some of what I need.

 

While I can't do what my 20 year old home automation system can do, it can do so much more. Times change.

Happy to add new things or find new and better ways to do the old things but I don't see why I should have to give anything up. Technology changes but core requirements don't... at least not for me. 



#21 LarrylLix

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 02:33 PM

<snipped>

 

While I can't do what my 20 year old home automation system can do, it can do so much more. Times change.

Newer HA systems don't do much more HA, but they do so much more remote control. The basic HA requirements haven't changed much except we don't save money on lights left on, which destroyed a good portion of the main HA wants. LOL



#22 ano

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 03:55 PM

Newer HA systems don't do much more HA, but they do so much more remote control. The basic HA requirements haven't changed much except we don't save money on lights left on, which destroyed a good portion of the main HA wants. LOL

Today there are many "motion" switches to prevent lights being left on. UPB lights can be controlled in groups so you really don't need a central controller anymore. It can control large banks of lights using scenes. And hubs can automate lighting controls, if that is what you want. Plus today, LED lights use so low of power, that you will probably spend more trying to control a light off, then you'll ever spend paying for electricity for the light.  There is even AI.  Yesterday, Alexa noticed that we left a garage light on that isn't normally on at that time, so she asked if she should shut it off. I don't remember Stargate doing that. :rofl:

 

I'm not saying the availability today of products is perfect, but things can be done, if not in a different way than in the past. 


Edited by ano, 16 October 2019 - 03:56 PM.


#23 LarrylLix

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Posted 16 October 2019 - 06:21 PM

Insteon was designed to work independently before smarter Hubs came into being. I avoid that usage but many, coming from the Insteon Hub (dumber) , like it.

 

Insteon was created from scratch with "scenes" back in 2000s? that didn't need any smarts in between, so I live in a slightly different world, dumping the X10 style years back.

 

I only use Inteon scenes where

-speed is needed eg. MS to Lamp, or

-massive signals would bog things down eg. flash all inside and outside lights, doorbell, beepers, simultaneously

- simultaneous dimming or ramping up would give an annoying  popcorn effect

-higher security is not required

 

I prefer the control a smarter hub gives me allowing logic, timing changes, various brightness levels, reporting etc..

 

With all the headless capabilities devices can have these days I can see smarter bubs and devices that can looks at remote logic states and do whatever they were told last month. The central "Hub" will just be a browser.


Edited by LarrylLix, 16 October 2019 - 06:23 PM.


#24 macromark

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Posted 24 October 2019 - 01:45 PM

Over on the Homeseer forum I notice a lot of folks who are unhappy with some aspect of that product (usually the UI) making statements like "Homeseer better get their act together or they will be displaced by newer systems like Hubitat or Polisys." This has got me wondering if that is in any way actually possible so I thought I would put the question out there. 

 

Mike - not sure if you've gotten any of our recent announcements but we are working very hard on HS4... which has a strong focus on GUI improvements. If you've not already heard about it, check out the HS4 vs HS3 features here:

https://homeseer.com...ation-software/



#25 upstatemike

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Posted 24 October 2019 - 02:20 PM

Mike - not sure if you've gotten any of our recent announcements but we are working very hard on HS4... which has a strong focus on GUI improvements. If you've not already heard about it, check out the HS4 vs HS3 features here:

https://homeseer.com...ation-software/

Yes thanks I am aware of HS4(already purchased my upgrade license). My point with this thread was that I don't think it is possible to replace Homeseer with any current or upcoming hub based product but because the threat gets thrown around a lot I wanted to see if somebody could show me how it could really happen. While folks here convinced me that products like Hubitat and Polisys are useful to enhance Homeseer, all the hub offerings have gaps in their feature set that prevents them from being a complete Homeseer replacement (at least for me).



#26 ano

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Posted 24 October 2019 - 03:07 PM

Hubs are certainly less full-featured than Homeseer. HOWEVER, they do have benefits and this was the biggest reason I left Homeseer many years ago. Homeseer using "Plugins" as a means to interface with hardware. Many "Plugins" are written by developers, many are good and keep their plugins updated, while others disappear and the plugin stays in suspended animation. Hubs have plugins as well, but they are written by the device manufacturers and made available to the hub to use should you install that device. When a hardware manufacture updates there hardware or adds new hardware, the manufacture is motivated to update their plugin so they can sell new hardware. The end result is plugins in hubs are always pretty current.

 

I don't know if this is a problem that has been addressed in Homeseer, but it certainly was one when I used it.



#27 LarrylLix

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Posted 24 October 2019 - 04:18 PM

I don't see any clear cut definition for 'hub'. To me the literal meaning of the word applied to electrical things, is just a lump in the middle of a piece of wire, with usually some kind of central control. It could be a bridge between two pprotocols, or a fully self autonomous smarts based controller, or anywhere in between. Sent using Tapatalk

#28 macromark

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Posted 24 October 2019 - 04:19 PM

Yes thanks I am aware of HS4(already purchased my upgrade license). My point with this thread was that I don't think it is possible to replace Homeseer with any current or upcoming hub based product but because the threat gets thrown around a lot I wanted to see if somebody could show me how it could really happen. While folks here convinced me that products like Hubitat and Polisys are useful to enhance Homeseer, all the hub offerings have gaps in their feature set that prevents them from being a complete Homeseer replacement (at least for me).

 

Thanks for your purchase! Ok, I missed your point, sorry. FWIW, we test a lot of the competition and look closely at the way they do things. I actually have Hubitat Hub in my office! We know our lack of a fully responsive GUI has been an issue for some time and we're addressing that now.

 

Hubs are certainly less full-featured than Homeseer. HOWEVER, they do have benefits and this was the biggest reason I left Homeseer many years ago. Homeseer using "Plugins" as a means to interface with hardware. Many "Plugins" are written by developers, many are good and keep their plugins updated, while others disappear and the plugin stays in suspended animation. Hubs have plugins as well, but they are written by the device manufacturers and made available to the hub to use should you install that device. When a hardware manufacture updates there hardware or adds new hardware, the manufacture is motivated to update their plugin so they can sell new hardware. The end result is plugins in hubs are always pretty current.

 

I don't know if this is a problem that has been addressed in Homeseer, but it certainly was one when I used it.

 

We're addressing this issue to a large degree by bringing development 'in-house' for plugins we've identified as strategically important (based on sales). You can see the list of those on the page I referenced above.



#29 upstatemike

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Posted 24 October 2019 - 07:14 PM

Good point about the definition of a hub. In my mind a hub is essentially a stand-alone piece of hardware that is largely self-contained. It does not have the ability to be run on different hardware platforms the way Homeseer or CQC can nor do they usually have any options for physical expansion like you do with OmniPro or Elk. They usually focus on a handful of core protocols and try to make everything fit into one of those slots. For example a Hub would depend on dry contact inputs via Z-Wave or Zigbee or similiar because they usually do not have a mechanism to wire sensors to them directly or via serial or other physical means. Homeseer, CQC, Elk, and Omnipro all have ways to physically attach voltage or dry contact devices to them. Just my definition and understand if views differ on this.

 

I don't have any good solution for plugins. 

 

* Your main reason for buying a system might be that it supports something you are interested in via a plugin. It may not be something that is common or popular but the fact that is available sold you on this platform. If everybody did all development in-house and only focused on the things that were most popular then you would end up with no options to get your obscure integration supported . There are never enough resources to cover the low-demand items so they never get done unless somebody who shares your need is able to write it themselves. Sonos took the route of a closed system with internal resources providing only the most commonly used features and eventually they evolved from a product i used heavily to one that no longer does any of the things I need it to or does them less well than it used to.

 

*On the other hand developers may lose interest in supporting or updating

their plugin before you have lost interest in using it.

 

*On the other hand having lots of folks working on their own plugins all at the same time means everything get refreshed faster.

 

*On the other hand a If you have to keep buying a plugin for each thing you need the cost can really start to add up.

 

*On the other hand any product that has a one time up-front fixed cost with no recurring revenue stream is going to be unsustainable once the growth of new customers levels off. Then the whole platform goes under.

 

...and so on, and so on.

 

I am not going to worry about how features get included in a platform as long as the ones I need are available and they continue to be available as long as I want to keep using them. They don't need to be supported or updated once their time has passed for everyone else, I just need them to be left alone and not broken or removed.



#30 picta

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Posted 02 November 2019 - 01:26 PM

Mike - not sure if you've gotten any of our recent announcements but we are working very hard on HS4... which has a strong focus on GUI improvements. If you've not already heard about it, check out the HS4 vs HS3 features here:

https://homeseer.com...ation-software/

Does HS4 support custom scripting? I am still running HS2 version 2.5.0.49, I have purchased HS3 but have not been able to use it as it would not replace all the functionality I have via HS2 due to the lack of scripting support. The issue with plugins will remain forever as the older ones would tend to be abandoned/discontinued, so the custom scripts could fill the need for people who do not want to tear up their old but well operating systems, or use non "strategically important" components. HS2 is the best system I know that would allow the mix of professional and custom components. HomeAssistant could be a distant second, as its UI interface is not comparable to the old Homeseer.






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