Biased. Duh. As are all on here. A couple folks make money related to their bias (like David). Why the rest of us have the biases we do is a study in human nature.
Frankly, I thought that was a more balanced response than I expected when I see a Cinemar person doing the posting.
C'mon, David, you're trying to be fair to the competition... what kind of capitalistic approach is that?
jiggy, I have limited experience in the HA space. I've been playing at HA for about nine years now. I have only gone full-tilt on two platforms so far: HomeSeer and MainLobby. I tinkereed with HAL, CQC, PowerHome, and a couple of others long forgotten. I'm a simple guy with limited techy knowledge and little patience for implementing many things at once. If something basically meets my needs, I'm unlikely to start over with another until the old one ceases to meet my needs. My budget is moderate, but I'm not shy to buy things - and expect many of them not to work. Of course, my wife's "needs" supersede mine.
My primary focus has always been touchscreen-based systems for home automation. I tried VR / TTS. Yuck. Not useful with wife, kids, guests. Not in my experience, at least. I think the most impressive thing to show anyone - wife, kids, guests, etc - is a system that does what is expected of it - be that function ever-so-humble... it must WORK... and it must be simple enough to USE that they can do it.
What I want it to do:
Irrigation / Sprinklers
Caller ID Notification
other things... email, recepies, games, etc.
HomeSeer worked well for this stuff for a long time. I put a lot of hours into making it control three CD changers via touchscreens through the web interface. Lighting and sprinklers and security and weather and such all worked great. But the interface was hideous by todays standards. And I'm no graphic designer... bummer.
I tried and/or bought a few packages trying to get the "next" GUI to make this stuff work better.
Finally, Cinemar's back-end server came out, which made it possible to support HomeSeer and
build an attractive front end.
Today, I've dumped HomeSeer and am only using the Cinemar stuff. It has its good and bad points - like anything else - but it really serves the touch-screen UI incredibly well.