Thursday, April 14, 2011
Sunday, April 10, 2011
So how do I get to all this wonderful trick-teaching goodness, you ask? Well, while Rover is free forever, I've decided to ask for a couple of bucks for the Rover Tricks Editor. Note that 100% of these payments will be donated to charity (specifically, the Vermont Foodbank, a local food shelf that helps distribute food to the needy).
So why am I asking for the money at all if I don't plan to keep it? Mostly because I want to open a dialog with the people who use Rover. The program has had hundreds of downloads, but I have only heard from a handful of its users. I'm hoping if you're forced to contact me to send me your payment, you'll be more willing to contact me to tell me how you feel about the program, what you want to see in future versions, and most simply of all, to make me feel like updating and releasing this program is worth the time, that I'm not just dropping a pebble into a bottomless pit.
I'm also not going through the HomeSeer Updater for this because I want to keep my overhead low (basically just the PayPal fees), so I can give as much of this as possible to charity. If I go through the Updater, not only do I have to go through a whole lot of rigamarole with setting up an account with the HomeSeer folks, they take a commission on the sales. Since I make RTE so easy to install you just unzip an archive, since it's only an add-on to an existing script, I don't really need the Updater, and this makes it possible to get nearly all of your two bucks to helping the hungry.
If you're worried about my promise that Rover is and always will be free, that hasn't changed. Rover remains fully functional without the Tricks editor; it just doesn't learn or do tricks, but it still has all the functions you already know, plus in v3 a whole bunch of new options, most importantly a new grid style that is great for tablets and touchscreens. Rover itself remains free and fully functional forever. All your two bucks gets you is the tricks editor, which also makes Rover automatically start displaying the links to tricks. (The link you followed to get here will, instead, take you to the tricks editor itself when you have it installed.)
Note that I am now processing registrations using Dwolla instead of PayPal because PayPal is getting very greedy and taking almost a quarter of the money away from the Vermont Foodbank, while Dwolla charges a flat $0.25 and is proving far better to deal with. For now I'm leaving the PayPal button below, but I will be getting rid of it after a while and switching completely to Dwolla. Please try the Dwolla version; I think you'll be impressed.
Register with Dwolla:
- Just Rover Tricks Editor: $2.00
- I want to donate to the Foodbank too: $5.00
- I want to donate even more: $10.00
By the way, you really can teach old dogs new tricks. The old saying isn't true at all; dogs are very clever critters and retain their learning abilities their whole lives.
If you're really determined to not use Dwolla, you can use PayPal for now, but this option is going away soon, because PayPal is increasingly evil.
Sunday, March 13, 2011
As of this writing, I have developed a new grid layout, along with a new set of icons. Here's an example of what things are looking like:
It also includes a new options setting for hiding the dimming controls for dimmable items.
Still to come:
- A better way to handle snippets fitting in with the grid layout.
- A new navigation bar at the bottom which replaces the long list of locations with some pull-down menus (since we're counting on newer browsers for this anyway).
- Something like Tricks, by which you can create a "virtual" location that is ultimately a collection of devices, events, and links, each of which appears in one cell in the grid. This lets you organize a screen as you see fit, regardless of how locations are organized in HomeSeer.