HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby ddemarco » Wed Jun 04, 2008 4:58 pm

Hi, everyone! I just wanted to drop you all a line to let you know that I've just released version 2.0 of HomePlanner. This is a freeware tool that I created one year ago for myself (I had PLCBus devices at home, but there was no good software for them), and I continued improving it over time.
HomePlanner allows you to design "plans" with devices, macros, weather information, etc., and link them together. It also contains a scheduler that allows you to automate control of your devices, and respond to events.
Then you can simply view those plans with any browser and control your devices remotely with a palm, PC, etc.
The latest version (2.0) also includes scripting, which means you can write your own VBScript and JavaScript routines for more complex scenarios. If you are a programmer, you can even embed this into your own applications.

You are all invited to download and use it:
http://hometomation.com/homeplanner

Your feedback will be highly appreciated. I think the PLCBus community deserves to have more and better free software, and I'm commited to contributing.

All the best,

Diego De Marco - www.hometomation.com
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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby Snelvuur » Wed Jun 04, 2008 5:01 pm

Nice work Diego, must say it looks nice. Didn't homeseer have support 1 year ago for plcbus? Since it does now..

// Erik (binkey.nl)
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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby Digit » Wed Jun 04, 2008 5:14 pm

PLCBUS plugin for Homeseer was first 'officially announced' somewhere late 2007 IIRC.
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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby ddemarco » Wed Jun 04, 2008 5:16 pm

HomeSeer added support rather recently. Appart from that, I also wanted that the plans updated automatically to display the real status of devices, even if they are operated manually. This is one of the things I think you cannot do easily (i.e. without scripting) in Homeseer.
But most of all, I wanted to create a free tool for PLCBus users, and HS is still a couple hundred bucks.

Cheers,

Diego De Marco - www.hometomation.com
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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby Digit » Wed Jun 04, 2008 5:19 pm

Hi Diego,

Nice to have you here[:)]. Not that much people are into PLCBUS yet...
I tried your 1.x version some time ago, when i had just bought my first interface and module. I do my own programming, but it's good to hear that development on Homeplanner is still continuing. Nice job!
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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby Jfn » Wed Jun 04, 2008 7:29 pm

Diego,

I am currently downloading the software. Will have a look at it tonight (Btw, the link 'Download Now' is broken).

About updating the status of the modules, how did you implement this? PLCBUS modules do not provide local status-changes, so you should continuously check what status the module is in (ON/OFF). Do you query every module by itself, or do you use command '1D - GET ONLY ON ID PULSE' to query all modules in the same house code (A1 .. A16 for example). Command '1D' gets you the status of all 16 modules within a second (in the DATA1 / DATA2 bytes), even if they are spread among different phases (using a 3-phase repeater).

How did you implement the mechanism of allowing commands to be send-out on the PLCBUS, but at the same time continuously read from the PLCBUS?

I am developing scripts in perl (on Linux) and I intend to run an endless loop that listens on a socket for any incoming command to be transmitted to the PLCBUS. If there is one, send it. If not then read status of every module and start all over again. Something like this:

for (;;)
if incoming_command_on_socket then send command
request status and update sql database;
fi

I am interested in learning how you programmed your software concerning this matter (No need to share code if you do no want that, I am more interested in the underlying mechanism).



Als het niet gerepareerd kan worden dan is het niet kapot!
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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby ddemarco » Wed Jun 04, 2008 7:51 pm

Hi jfn,

The polling is implemented by means of the "Get only ON ID pulse" command (and its 3-phase counterpart if the system is configured for 3-phase operation).
These polls are typically sent every 15 seconds. All commands are serialized, which means that HomePlanner never collides with itself. However, this poll may collide with commands sent from other devices such as scene controllers or remote controls. To avoid this, Homeplanner will immediately suspend polls for 5 seconds if collisions (or external commands) are detected on the power line.

This approach provides enough response time, while reducing the probability of collisions. In effect, if you switch a device using the local switch, the average time to see this reflected in the plan will be 7.5 seconds. Of course, if you operate a device using homeplanner, the plans are updated immediately.

Thank you very much for the info about the "download now" link. I've just fixed it.

All the best,

Diego De Marco - www.hometomation.com
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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby Digit » Wed Jun 04, 2008 8:57 pm

That's how i do it too, more or less;

At startup i look at the addresses in use for PLCBUS devices, derive the house-codes in use from them, and do the "GET ONLY ON ID PULSE" for only those house-codes. It's very fast.

@Diego: how did you implement collision detection? Is it just by receiving data not being a response to outgoing commands or otherwise (is there?).
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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby ddemarco » Wed Jun 04, 2008 9:14 pm

Any unexpected stream of data (even if incomplete) is interpreted as a collision. PLCBus 1141 does not have any special feature to detect collisions unfortunately...

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HomePlanner 2.0 (freeware) is out

Postby Digit » Wed Jun 04, 2008 10:10 pm

Ok, i was just asking cause it could have been i missed something in the 'English written by Chinese'-stylish documentation [:D]
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