Elk M1 Tasks and Rules?


Active Member
Not sure just how the Elk M1 Task setup works in connection with Rules. The Task screen simply assigns a task name and a voice description. The Rules THEN clause can activate a task. Where is the definition of a task programmed? Suppose I wanted to set up a task named "Sunset" and do certain things. I currently have a rule defined WHENEVER SUNSET and then several THEN clauses to turn on various lights. I see that I can ACTIVATE a task WHENEVER SUNSET but what does that buy me? When would you use tasks?
Tasks can also be thought of as labels, macros, or subroutines (sort of).

For example, I have a task that sets multiple lights the way I want them for evening use. By calling that a task, it makes it easier for an occupant to trigger via the Elk keypad or ElkRM. It makes it possible for multiple events to call that task. Since we know that Elk doesn't support "or" you can work around it.

When sunset and we are home, then do lighting task.
(essentialy an OR here, but it is two separate rules)
When we arrive home and it is dark, then do lighting task.

That way you don't have to list all the lights twice, which makes it easier to tweak dim levels & also saves rules.
It makes sense now. I would have a rule that says WHENEVER Task1 THEN ...
I could then invoke that task by WHENEVER whatever THEN ACTIVATE Task1.
exactly. and the beauty is that you can have multiple events call one task. And you can "show" the tasks that you want a user to be able to do and not-show those that are for internal (subroutine) use only.
You can also execute tasks from the telephone. Nice for checking the status of locks and garage doors, for example.
MRL, besides being "exposed" via the voice interface, there's also the Tasks tab on the XEP's applet that exposes the defined tasks.

So you can define tasks like "Economy Mode", "Comfort Mode", "Reset DSL & Router", setup rules that run Whenever the task is activated to accomplish those things and then trigger them via the phone interface or a simple click on the XEP's applet.
I assume he is talking about the Elk virtual keypad, which you access by pointing a browser at your XEP IP addy.
One other great reason to use tasks is that most 3rd party elk interfaces can trigger tasks as well. Another elk programming concept I would encourage you to take advantage of is the custom setting. You can parametrize your elk rules to make it easier to tweak them. An example is a sprinkler program. Instead of hard-coding the start time and each zone run time inside of rules, you can make these parameters sourced from custom settings. Then it's a simple task to change your sprinkler run times and on/off. Many 3rd party interfaces, such as mainlobby and homeseer allow you to read/write to custom settings, so, following the example above, you could have a pretty graphical user interface adjusting your sprinkler system.
WayneW said:
I assume he is talking about the Elk virtual keypad, which you access by pointing a browser at your XEP IP addy.
Yes, that's it. I was referring to it by technology, vs. proper name. Sorry!