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Thread: Decent espresso

  1. #1221
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    Default Goodbye Google Play Store?

    Iíve been working to finish up the DE1 tablet app so that I could publish it to the Google Play Store. My plan was to use the Play Store as a way to push software (and firmware) updates out to people who own our espresso machines.

    However, this week Google announced something that made me reconsider this strategy, a requirement that app support the latest Android APIs or they won't be allowed on the Play Store. https://android-developers.googleblo...rformance.html

    Ars Technica discusses it here:
    https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2017...-apps-in-2018/

    The tablet included with the DE1 is a perfectly (good but not current) design. It runs Android 5.1. With this new announcement from Google, itís not clear to me that in the future, Iíll definitely be able to put out DE1 App updates that are allowed in the play store. We'd become literally disconnected from our clients.

    What if some open source library Iím using doesnít use the latest and greatest Google Tech? Then, Iím stuck either (a) not updating our app or (b) figuring out how to update other open source projects to the latest tech.

    This isnít mere speculation: the DE1 GUI uses "Androwish" https://www.androwish.org as its programming language. This is a cross-platform toolkit which allows the DE1 GUI to run today on Android, OSX, Windows, and Linux. Soon, our app will also run on iOS. I picked this toolkit deliberately so that we wouldnít be locked into a single platform: the DE1 app could be run on an iPad or even a Windows or Linux laptop.

    The other thing thatís been worrying me is what would happen to everyoneís DE1 if Google decided that the DE1 app was undesired for some reason. Apple announced last week and then backpedaled a bit (https://www.macrumors.com/2017/12/20...template-apps/) that they have new App standards and are retroactively purging apps that don't meet them. Google could arbitrarily decide to cancel our Play Store Developer Account. Even if we could contact someone at Google (debatable) to reinstate us, would they give us a new Play account, thereby disconnecting us from the existing DE1 App users?

    Because of these announcements and concerns, Iím leaning heavily now toward not using the Google Play Store to distribute the DE1 app.

    Instead, the App would be preinstalled on your tablet and would update itself by downloading itself from our web site. The DE1 App would also be downloadable as an APK that you install if you want to use your own tablet. And to arrest any worries, the App and its Source Code are downloadable, and open source as well. Instructions on how to run the App on a Desktop (OSX/Windows/Linux) will be provided.

    My nervousness is that some change in Google Policy might mean that 5-year-old DE1s can no longer get App updates from Decent, and I want to go down a path where that doesnít happen.

    What do you think?

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    Quote Originally Posted by decent_espresso View Post

    What do you think?
    Would replacing the Play store by FDroid be a solution ?

  3. #1223
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    Default Decent espresso

    I've had a similar problem on IOS with a security app that I use. I now have to replace an entire security system if I want access on an iPhone (or Android for that matter). I'd suggest avoid using app stores for technology that has a long life, as on Decent's control systems.

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    I would prefer direct download from DE website to avoid any problems with appstores!


    Gesendet von iPhone mit Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by decent_espresso View Post
    Instead, the App would be preinstalled on your tablet and would update itself by downloading itself from our web site. The DE1 App would also be downloadable as an APK that you install if you want to use your own tablet. And to arrest any worries, the App and its Source Code are downloadable, and open source as well. Instructions on how to run the App on a Desktop (OSX/Windows/Linux) will be provided.
    If you go this route, the updates should be cryptographically signed, with a public key (and source site) that can be updated in the program's settings. That way if a hacker gains control of your website, they can't maliciously update the software on everyone's machine. The public key (and source site) should be changeable by the user in case one day Decent goes under and the community decides to take over software development.
    Last edited by roastini; 24-12-17 at 08:58.

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    The Amazon App store isn't similarly restrictive, is it? How hard would it be to have it try to get updates from different sources, Google, Amazon, or you?

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    Quote Originally Posted by roastini View Post
    If you go this route, the updates should be cryptographically signed, with a public key (and source site) that can be updated in the program's settings. That way if a hacker gains control of your website, they can't maliciously update the software on everyone's machine. The public key (and source site) should be changeable by the user in case one day Decent goes under and the community decides to take over software development.
    I agree. The Decent Espresso web site has always been https:// (encrypted) only, with no http: access. Updates to the DE1 will be over https:// but will also give a big complaint if the public key does not match. However, it might not be wise to totally block updates if the keys don't match, as some people's Internet providers don't provide any other way to get to the internet, but to be "https proxied". I'll likely follow Google and Apple's example of the warning if the https:// certificate has changed.

    Screen Shot 2017-12-25 at 10.58.15b.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nishimiya View Post
    Would replacing the Play store by FDroid be a solution ?
    Thank you for the F-Droid link. Reading about it https://f-droid.org/en/docs/ I wonder about creating a "Decent Espresso Repository" so that if other people write their own apps (or fork my app) then they could all be available in one place. This could be a nice way to get other compatible-with-decent projects visibility.

    With my previous project Magnatune, there were some really great open source projects that integrated with our music, but they suffered from a lack of market-access. In other words, people didn't know (or perhaps, care) that they existed, and they weren't used and withered.

    Quote Originally Posted by dlight View Post
    I've had a similar problem on IOS with a security app that I use. I now have to replace an entire security system if I want access on an iPhone (or Android for that matter). I'd suggest avoid using app stores for technology that has a long life, as on Decent's control systems.
    Very interesting, thanks for telling me about that experience.

    Quote Originally Posted by o2c View Post
    The Amazon App store isn't similarly restrictive, is it? How hard would it be to have it try to get updates from different sources, Google, Amazon, or you?
    Given how I've been treated by Amazon during the 10 years of my BookMooch.com project, I REALLY REALLY don't want to put myself (and you) under the control of Amazon. They really don't care about being evil, and there's nobody you can call.

    . . . . .

    There are lots more comments on Facebook on this topic
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/decentespresso and it appears that technical people tend to prefer the DE1 app not going through the Google Play Store. I'm going to look at what's involved with making our own F-Droid repository, but a lean self-updating mechanism for the app is my likely direction for now.

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    Hey John, could you maybe do a video on a temperature profiling shot with an example of decreasing temperature across the shot? Curious to see how the machine behaves with such a setting.

  10. #1230
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    Quote Originally Posted by rytopa View Post
    Hey John, could you maybe do a video on a temperature profiling shot with an example of decreasing temperature across the shot? Curious to see how the machine behaves with such a setting.
    Yep, good idea. I will do that in the next few weeks. I've not yet "wired up" the GUI I've written for the "Advanced Shot Profile" to the actual bluetooth commands to do it. That's on my very-soon todo list.

    Before I make the video, though, I'll want to wait until we get our machine back from certification testing from Intertek. The reason is, that each prototype model we've made has had less and less group head mass, and more thermal isolation. For temperature profiling to work, the group head has to have minimal thermal mass, otherwise it's not possible to drag the temperature down in just 30s. The water mixing will bring the water temperature down, but the group head will bring it back up.

    There's an inherent engineering tensions between "temperature stability" and "voluntary, fast, temperature change".

    My expectation is that we won't be able to do big temperature swings that effectively yet, as it's not something we've focussed on, but it's something we'll improve with firmware updates. Now that the hardware design has stabilized, we can start programming the code to effectively counter the thermal mass of the group head.

    But, we'll see. It might be that the PIDs magically do the right thing. That's how it's supposed to work.
    Last edited by decent_espresso; 27-12-17 at 03:35.

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