• You've been granted Beta access to this site, allowing you to explore some of the new features while they're still under construction. More information can be found in the Beta forum.

HomeSeer Road Runner Plugin

JohnWPB

Active Member
As a few of you know, I have moved for the past few months from Home Automation to CarPC mode as a hobby :) Now that I have just about everything in order, and working the way with Road Runner and My DigitalFX skin, (Have a look at that link for some screen shots of the interface) Its time to go back to Home Automation for a while.

Here is a quick video of just a couple of the features

During the past couple months I was toying as using Road Runner as a front end for my In-wall touchscreen. I had limited success using all sorts of scripts and ways to talk to HS over the network.

The last link was getting Road Runner and Home Seer to communicate directly with each other. I just over came that in the past couple days :D I have written a plugin for Road Runner, that allows full communication between HS & RR. It makes all of the commands completely native to Road Runner. It works if RR and HS are on the same machine, or works across a network as well. You can control devices, get device status, trigger events, receive event triggers from HS and so forth. So you can put a motion sensor by the front door, and when it detects motion, send a command to Road Runner to display your camera screen.

What makes Road Runner so great, is that it is VERY easy to create skins for.

Making a skin is as simple as drawing up a screen in your favorite paint program, and then opening it in the GUI skin editor, and putting any text, labels, buttons, application embedding areas, and such in place. Thats as simple as I think you can get :)

Here is the image alone that I did in Photoshop for the living room lights: (The indicidual icons are embedded in my PSD, or you can have RR load an image into that area if you don't want to put them in the main image.)

psimagerf4.jpg


Here it is in the skin editor (The house code M3 is all that would need to be changed to control a different device. Pressing the Dim Bar to the right, creates a small pop-up screen with a dim slider that you can move with your finger to the desired level, or tap the dim / bright buttons at the top or bottom of the slider to go 5% increments.)

skineditorbi4.jpg



And the final GUI that will be displayed on the touchscreen. Notice the above images have different background colors, it is actually transparent, and you can choose what background image or color to show behind the screens, in this case I used a black image with some colorful swirls on it)

completedtn4.jpg


As far as the font colors, and the buttons at the bottom, you can change them from within RR the skin, or define what color you want in the skin editor.


The next is it can actually do far more than just about any Home Automation GUI on the market! It does it all... Extensive Weather information, maps, interactive maps , gas prices, Youtube videos, scribble pad, Calculator, Monitoring Camera's, Google Earth, Photo viewer with pan and zoom, AM/FM/HD radio, XM or Sirius satellite, Local theater listings, and about 1,000 other things :) All from a screen that is 100% designed for touchscreen use.

As far as audio, it has the most powerful music database capabilities that I have ever seen to manage your music library. You can list by genre, year, artist, album, song name and can sort by any of them as well, randomize, sort by year...... The search is extremely powerful as well, such as <1980 to get all music in your collection from 1979 and earlier. The music is stored on the local machine, and can point to any computer on the network for the actual music files. It has a built in virtual 10 disk changer that you can add music to any disk with a couple clicks. As an example, you can search for "Aerosmith" and the results show instantly (database driven). You can then click "Results to disk" and choose a disk number to put it on. Every single Aerosmith song you have in your collection no matter if it's on a full album, random music folder or compilation albums is then on that disk.

Being it is database driven, and does not rely on filder structure (Uses MP3 tags), you could literally put every single MP3 you have in a single folder, and still view my album, artist, genre ect.

Lastly, there is a LOT of hardware that is supported by RR. You can hook up XM, Sirius, HD radios, camera's, and such. There are game port plugins that you can rip appart a USB joypad type device to get 16 physical buttons that can do anything when pressed. There are also specific devices, such as the Fusion Brain, that will give you Digital and Analog in's and outs. This could be used to control relay's for whole house audio and the likes.

RR is also as easy to write scripts for as Home Seer. You can parse web pages to get information ect....

So, the question is, would anyone be interested in such a plugin? I have coded it for personal use, and a lot is hard coded. I could make an ini with settings for network machine names and such.
 

WayneW

Senior Member
So, the question is, would anyone be interested in such a plugin?
Looks great John! Does it requires HS2? I am still on HS1.7 and would be interested if your plugin if it was compatible. I have no idea how many active HS1.7'ers are left, so don't go out of your way for HS1.7 support if it isn't justified.
 

JohnWPB

Active Member
I recently switched to 2.0 as well, even though I had a legit copy of it here for almost 2 years hahhah!

It will work with 1.7, but only on the same machine. It uses the speaker client in 2.0 to send the communications to the HS server over the network.
 

drozwood90

Senior Member
I've been playing with RR as a means to get my HTPC up and running. I've just not been satisfied with anything that I've used so far.

I've not tried the Linux route...or the let's spend lots of $$...but maybe that is what I need to do.

However, in the mean time, I would be willing to try out a RR plugin (I just stumbled on this...I was using CarPC for a while).

Thanks!

--Dan
 

DeLicious

Active Member
looks cool, and I'm a big HS user, but I've never heard of Road Runner. When I saw the subject of this post, I assumed it was a plug-in designed to interface with Time Warner's internet service. Can you post a link to RR info?
 

SnyperBob

Active Member
Yes! I would be interested. I want to implement a Road Runner setup in my future bar. This would be perfect!!!

Could you release this? Man, this is awesome :)
 

JohnWPB

Active Member
Sorry, for those that are not familiar with Road Runner:

It is a front end designed for using on a computer in your car. It is 100% designed for touch screen use, and is absolutely perfectly suited for use on a home touch screen system. It is expandable with plugins that you can download or write yourself, you can script for it with VBScript or AutoIt, there is a girder plugin for use with remote controls ect ect ect...

You can find out more about it in the Road Runner Forums. The RR forums are similar to the great groups of people here at Cocoon, users helping users ect.

On a last note RR is 100% free of charge!

I just did a quick video and uploaded it to YouTube. There is a link now in the first post.
 

CollinR

Senior Member
This was an excellent idea, especially for those like me that would prefer not to be running explorer.exe! Great work man!
 

JohnWPB

Active Member
This was an excellent idea, especially for those like me that would prefer not to be running explorer.exe! Great work man!

Yea, thats one other thing, RR can be run as the shell. You can also create a button in RR to load explorer.exe if you wanted to minimize it and access explorer for something.
 

drozwood90

Senior Member
John,

I didn't know you could script in RR! Wow, maybe m,y version is old...or maybe it's me?

Wow, there is so much I can do with this now...I'll have to see if I can't find a few scripting examples somewhere!

I'd like to change a few things about it to look / feel more like MediaPC...esp. since I want this to look at a directory and be able to play BOTH DVD images and AVI files. When HD space was expensive, I used to make AVI rips of my DVDs...now I just strip them to the drive as HD space is SO cheap!! So I need to make the player smarter about what's in the directory.

Any suggestions?

Thanks!

--Dan
 

JohnWPB

Active Member
Changing the look is super easy, as all you need to do is create an image, and choose that as the background. Then just move the buttons, labels and such to where you want.

As far as playing video's, that shouldn't be a problem either, you can use the built in player, Media Player Classic, or VLC.
 

drozwood90

Senior Member
Changing the look is super easy, as all you need to do is create an image, and choose that as the background. Then just move the buttons, labels and such to where you want.

As far as playing video's, that shouldn't be a problem either, you can use the built in player, Media Player Classic, or VLC.

John,

Where do you put the scripts?

Do you have any examples?

Thanks!

--Dan
 

123

Senior Member
I may have misunderstood how the UI is built so forgive me if this is a stupid question:

Is the UI resolution-dependent?

My question is based upon this statement "... all you need to do is create an image, and choose that as the background. Then just move the buttons, labels and such to where you want." If you start with a 1024x768 screen-image, drop controls on it and then proceed to view it at 800x600, what happens? Does Road Runner auto-scale it?
 

JohnWPB

Active Member
John,

Where do you put the scripts?

Do you have any examples?

Thanks!

--Dan

It really does not matter where you put the scripts. You can comunicate with RR using the RR SDK. Below is an example in AutoIt:

Code:
; Here are a few examples on how to Interact with RR using AutoIt scripting
; AI is very silimiar to VB, I just use AutoIt as it can be compiled as small
; self contained exe's
  
; You can use just about any language to communicate with Road Runner
  
  #include <Date.au3>
  
; Open communication with Road Runner
  $rr = ObjCreate("RoadRunner.SDK")
  
; How to send a couple different commands to Road Runner
  
		  $rr.execute ("play"); Sends the command to Play the current track to RR
		  $rr.execute ("Load;audio_player.skin");Loads the audio player.skin

;Get the currently playing audio track, and display it in a message box

$MyTitle = $rr.getinfo("TAGTITLE")
MsgBox(0, '', $MyTitle )
  
  
; Small example using a script to display a pop-up screen when RR starts
; wait  2 seconds and then close the pop-up
  
  $CurrentTime = _NowTime(4)
  $FindHour = StringInStr($CurrentTime, ":")
  $FindHour = $FindHour - 1
  $MyHour = StringLeft($CurrentTime,$FindHour)
  
  
  If $MyHour >= 0 and $MyHour <12 then 
	  $rr.execute ("Menu;Good_Morning.skin")
	  sleep 2000
	  $rr.execute "ESC"
  EndIf
  
  If $MyHour >= 12 and $MyHour <17 then 
	  $rr.execute ("Menu;Good_Afternoon.skin" )
	  sleep 2000
	  $rr.execute "ESC"
  EndIf
  
  If $MyHour >= 17 and $MyHour <24 then 
	  $rr.execute ("Menu;Good_evening.skin" )
	  sleep 2000
	  $rr.execute "ESC"
  EndIf




Is the UI resolution-dependent?

My question is based upon this statement "... all you need to do is create an image, and choose that as the background. Then just move the buttons, labels and such to where you want." If you start with a 1024x768 screen-image, drop controls on it and then proceed to view it at 800x600, what happens? Does Road Runner auto-scale it?

Road Runner auto scales itself to whatever you want. In each skin folder there is a "general.ini" In there, you tell it the original image sizes, and then tell it what resolution you want it displayed at.

Here is what the general.ini looks like, this will take the original 800 x 600 images, and scale it to 1024 x 768

OriginalWidth=800
OriginalHeight=600
ShowWidth=1024
ShowHeight=798



BTW, I am leaving on vacation in just a few hours, and will not be back for a couple weeks. I am not sure if I will have Internet along the way, so if I do not respond right away, I will when I get back.
 
Top