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Stepping Back

upstatemike

Senior Member
Just about year ago folks were saying that it was a bad time to pick a new HA technology because too many things were in flux to make a decision on what to get. After spending time recently trying to decide on touch screen and camera strategies and some other core upgrades I have come to the conclusion that things aren’t any clearer now than they were then. Each path in one area leads you to rethink aspects of other parts of your system. I’ve decided to just step back and do nothing (again) until things settle out a bit. I’m going to defer all of my HA decisions until ALL of the following things are resolved so I can make some reasonable comparisons:

UPB releases firmware that eliminates the double tap delay.

Z-Wave releases some in-wall keypads.

Insteon starts shipping the wall mount adapter for the ControLinc.

The RoZetta X-10 hardware translator is finally released.

Sonos provides some method of controlling components attached to the system from their remotes and can display station info from a tuner on the remote.

HAL adds the ability to dial a phone number and speak a message over the phone. (A pretty serious shortcoming for a voice based product!)

Panasonic adds some Day/Night models to their cheap pan/tilt IP camera line.

RCS actually ever releases the new touch screen that works with Stargate.

Elk releases a surface mount touch screen for the M1.

HAI realizes that the phone dialer can do more than just report alarms.

Homeseer works the final bugs out of the Stargate plug-in.

PowerHome releases the new version that allows you to manage the X-10 addresses in Insteon devices.

CQC allows touch screens to automatically switch to a door camera view when the doorbell rings.

MainLobby adds support for Slimserver.

Adaptive Home Logic releases their next update.

The xPL project starts supporting Insteon.
 

Spanky

Senior Member
As home automation technology matures, many more changes will occur. If you wait for the perfect solution with no more changes, you will wait forever. Choose a platform that will upgrade your existing software without having to buy new hardware on every change.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
Spanky said:
As home automation technology matures, many more changes will occur. If you wait for the perfect solution with no more changes, you will wait forever. Choose a platform that will upgrade your existing software without having to buy new hardware on every change.
I'm not waiting for "no more changes" just enough stability? maturity? to decide what those base components should be. I'm just trying to avoid the "one step forward, two steps back" route because it is getting expensive and frustrating.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
IVB said:
well, if your system ain't broke, don't fix it.
I wouldn't be looking to change it except I want to add some new features like cameras and touch screens. Unfortunately these may require a change to my foundation technologies (controller, software, etc) to get me where I want to be.

So I guess in a way it IS broke.
 

DavidL

Senior Member
mike, is this for your personal home or I thought you were an HA dealer / integrator?
Why don't you do some of this to supplement what you already have and are comfortable with? One step at a time. Add one touchscreen, applicable software and integrate it with what you have. Add one more feature there that you couldn't have done before, etc....

Won't be "perfect" (nothing is), but gets you to the next level.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
DavidL said:
mike, is this for your personal home or I thought you were an HA dealer / integrator?
Why don't you do some of this to supplement what you already have and are comfortable with? One step at a time. Add one touchscreen, applicable software and integrate it with what you have. Add one more feature there that you couldn't have done before, etc....

Won't be "perfect" (nothing is), but gets you to the next level.
Me a Dealer/Integrator? I can't even hack it as a DIY hobbyist!

The path you are suggesting is where I started. I was going to use the RCS touchscreen with my existing Stargate. Buy some Panasonic IP cameras to display door video on the screens. Use the Homeseer VR engine plus the Stargate plug-in to let me play with VR. Rozetta was going to give me direct Insteon control from Stargate and PowerHome gives me Insteon management plus an ascii interface to feed more data into Stargate.

Rozetta and the RCS touchscreen are MIA, The Panasonic cameras have some night vision limitations, The updated version of PowerHome with some key insteon features is not out yet, The Homeseer stargate plug-in is not finished and I am starting to have some doubts about the microsoft VR engine used by Homeseer anyway.

So I am basically nowhere.
 

Rupp

Senior Member
Just wait until that Vista VR engine comes around at the end of the year. Then VR will finally start to become main stream.
 

DavidL

Senior Member
Rupp,
Call me a skeptic.
I did a lot of VR work in the past.
Bit of trivia:
IBM's longest standing project is VR - now called ViaVoice
over 25 years old.

There are a lot of technical, mechanical, CPU intensive issues preventing that nirvana. Lots of money has been thrown at it and it does get better. I betchas Vista might bring it another click forward, but my dollar is still on touchscreens.
 

Rupp

Senior Member
David,
You are more than likely right. My problem with touch screens are they are never where I really need them. I guess I need more but if I add another PC to my house then I will have to get a substation.
 

DavidL

Senior Member
Good news is 2Core (Intel's latest) touts 40% less energy needed :unsure:
Don't add a PC, add a touchscreen. either multihead VGA, UTMA, thin client, etc.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
Rupp said:
David,
You are more than likely right. My problem with touch screens are they are never where I really need them. I guess I need more but if I add another PC to my house then I will have to get a substation.
This is the same thought process that drove me to look ata the HAI touch screens. Cheap enough to have 6 - 8 screens. No PC required (just 1 $700 hub device). Does most of the core stuff I want including the "switch to camera when the doorbell rings" thing. Surface mount. 1 cat-5 for data/video/power. Table stand is also available.

Even if I don't go HAI, this is the reference I will use when looking at other options. If I go with touch screens I will definitely need more than just 1 or 2 of them!
 

mdonovan

Active Member
Rupp said:
Just wait until that Vista VR engine comes around at the end of the year. Then VR will finally start to become main stream.

You must have missed this post by Squintz. It's hilarious. VR just ain't there yet. :unsure:
 

Rupp

Senior Member
DavidL said:
Good news is 2Core (Intel's latest) touts 40% less energy needed :unsure:
Don't add a PC, add a touchscreen. either multihead VGA, UTMA, thin client, etc.
But I can buy a small PC's and touch screen for less than one of these type monitors.
 

Rupp

Senior Member
mdonovan said:
Rupp said:
Just wait until that Vista VR engine comes around at the end of the year.  Then VR will finally start to become main stream.

You must have missed this post by Squintz. It's hilarious. VR just ain't there yet. :D
I guess some of us are better at it than others :unsure:

Out of the box my Vista install recognizes every thing I throw at it. It's not perfect but it's the best I've seen especially with the OS integration.
 
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