Yio Remote Community

Talking about the Qt decision

@marton : At first I want to tell you how happy I am (after 2 NEEO years) that we will get a real “open remote”. Getting the hardware up and running is far beyond my potential. Thanks a lot !!!

I know Qt since 20 years but I have practically no experience with it. I was playing with Yio remote software and I am able to run it under Windows. I see that especially the UI components are quite costly (lines of code).

I am not sure if Qt is future proof and think about alternatives. I have good experience on the desktop with electron + Vue. But I have no idea if Google Chrome is not too fat for a Pi Zero. Does anyone have experience with Google Chrome on the PI? If no one contradicts, I’ll make a prototype.

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Hi @ChristianRiedl

Thanks! :slight_smile:

I wouldn’t worry about that the UI requires some lines of code. These could be optimised that we create components out of most used elements. Therefore reduce the code required to create a button, media player, etc.

I think Qt is very future proof. They are working on making it run on embedded systems like cortex mcus, which would be a nice addition to the already cross platform solution.

I’ve looked at runnig a html app in chrome on a pi, but even on a raspberry pi 3 it was laggy and slow. Qt can take advantage of the Pi’s built in opengl support, which gives us a nice smooth user interface. I believe that Qt is a quite powerful and versatile solution that has many more advantages over a browser based application.

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I implemented now my prototype YIO solution based on Google Chrome as Progressive Web App with Vue/Vuetify (Material Design). As I am quite experienced with this stack, it took me about one week to create an app handling blinds, lights, weather, webcam, Roon media player (with media browsing), B&O control via Globalcache IR based on my own and special smart home server (using MQTT and REST).

The main problem of this solution is poor performance of PI Zero. Switching between 2 screens takes about 2 seconds (SPA, no network access, caching with Vue keep_alive). All operations on the screen (slider, browsing media, webcam life view) are fast enough. Vue 3, which should be available until end of the year, promises a 100 % performance improvement. Probably still not fast enough.

PI Zero uses a quite old processor, I was looking for PI Zero compatibel alternatives. But they all consume too much power. YIO will cost about 300 €, in relation the 10 € PI Zero is damned cheap (and weak). It would be great to find a small PI compatible board with same power consumption and 2-3 times more performance.

@Nklerk : you have a lot of knowledge about the NEEO remote. I have read they used a Cortex M4 single core with 32 MB ram. Is it true ? Do you know which software stack they have used to implement the GUI ? Power consumption of their remote was quite ok, I think.

I believe your correct about the cortex M4 on the remote. The brain has more power. Please know the remote uses an embedded system and not a web based system as some believed

I’m not a fan of QT myself as its new to me and feels buggy at times. On the other hand the graphical performance it produces, the modularity and the vast amount of features it brings let me believe it’s the way to go for this project. Hardware design has come a long way so for this version I don’t expect many if all changes. Obviously that’s not up to me.

To get the project further, a baseline need to made, currently its the pi based design. Besides this base as a starting point. I believe looking into the next iteration for hardware changes is a good thing. I even dare to say that a next version could host a fully custom designed board hosting a cpu of choice.

With this baseline different software solutions could be tested as well. Who knows, what other possibilities might work.

I would like to stay with QT. I think it’s a versatile platform and the graphical performance is great. Not to mention that they just released their support for MCUs, which is great news for a fully custom board based YIO in the future. That means porting the existing software to even an M4 architecture will be a breeze. And looking at the video, performance is going to be the same.

The hardware won’t change much for now. Not to complain, but I have spent quite a bit of time and money on creating this version, improving it, hunting down bugs and making sure it’s ready for other people to build. I believe the performance is very good on the Pi, but ask also @Carp3-noctem as he has a YIO Remote for testing.

I only wanted to inform that I created my prototype and it really switches screens too slow (2 seconds).
But I do not want to question or criticize your Qt decision. When the important integration hubs are supported, GUIs for the most frequently used items are available it will be a great solution for a lot of people. For the Qt solution the PI Zero is fast enough, no reason to change it in your project.

For people like me a web based solution has many advantages. I can run the same app on the desktop, on any web browser in the office, on my PI Touch 7 control panel at home, on our smart phones.
It even runs quite nice on my Samsung TV.
Maybe I have good luck and Raspberry brings a new, faster Pi Zero next year and I can replace it. I still believe that there is a market for a YIO which is fast enough to run web apps.

As soon you have the new dock ready (with IR) I want to buy a YIO. Maybe, when I have more time to work with Qt I will start to fall in love with it.

I didn’t take as criticism :slight_smile:

Qt is great, because I am doing the same thing as you basically. Running the YIO Remote app on my mac, the 7" Pi touchscreen and my iPhone. Having a cross-platform development environment is a big plus.

Seems like the hardware is working and I am getting final quotes at the moment, so I hope the release is getting closer of the kit.

@marton Quick Question : Can you tell me which display you are using in the YIO remote ?

So far, i can tell, that QT is a very good solution when it comes to the current hardware. The remote reacts allmost instantly to all decisions made via Hardkeys or via Touchscreen. it only need a bit “thinking time” when it transfers data from or to the backend (home assist running on my freenas).

Actually i don’t have much experience with qt, but what i can tell, what @martonwas able to do in a short amount of time, it has nothing to do with the development speed of the n**o product. He was able to implement new devices within one (or two) days, qt provides much effort in my eyes (at least at the moment) it also provides some sort of cross-platform ability and we will see where we will end with that.

when i find some time, i would like to do a video showing the remote and the actual function, so others can see,from a different guy and not the project head :wink:

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