Main Site Documentation

Wow, this place has become quiet


#1

I just returned from holiday and expected heaps of postings on my return but instead I find just 3 new and 2 unread. Mind you, the posting about the PCB footprint goof did have a larger number of replies. :wink:

What’s happened to us all? Have we all switched to a new architecture or something? I know I use ESP8266 a lot but I still use NETMF for some legacy and new stuff where I need the power and easy development. I am also working on a G400 footprint SOM with the Octavo module. :wink:


#2

Perhaps TinyClr works so well, that no one has any problems. Yes its eerily quite around here.


#3

Aduino’s, Pi’s and may other devices are cheaper and have much more success than NETMF and unfortunately GHI disappointed some customers in the past and it takes a long time to get back lost customers
and what could a customer now use ?
NETMF with all the bugs and missing features ?
a very early alpha of what comes after NETMF (even if its promising) with bugs and missing features ?
of course it depends what features you need and Visual Studio is not the only IDE which is able to debug

to use with Visual Studio and NETMF or TinyCLR ? :smiley:


#4

Define success? If you’re looking at sheer sales volume then yes, they are successful, but that’s not what NETMF set out to do. It set out to make the process easier, with the ability to attach a debugger, leveraging the mountains of programming skill that is available in a modern language like c#; which it has done, to resounding success.


#5

if i take a look at projects you will find on the internet, hackster for example, it looks like most users don’t need what you define as “easy process” they still have success even without VS and C# and "the easy NETMF"
and as already mentioned VS is not the only IDE with debugging capabilities

more than 99% electronic projects are not done with NETMF, because NETMF is so awesome ?

TinyCLR OS when its finished is one of many and i am curious what market share it will have (and what restrictions)


#6

My thoughts are the new web site broke many of the legacy google links that brought people to the site.
Once you leak the google juice, it take a long time to get it back.
As I said before, I think they need to work out some routing for the new site so the old links still work.


#7

Unlike many of you pros, I’m only a hobbyist and not a commercial product developer, but I have to say I feel GHI isn’t heading in the right direction for me to stay involved. I’ve given this quite a bit of thought recently :slight_smile:

After they redesigned the website, the first thing i thought was “they abandoned the amateur/hobbyist/DIY part of their business”. Now, i know they haven’t so don’t flame me, but it felt that way. I totally respect the priorities of running a business and the money is to be made in commercial products, but I’ve always felt GHI built interest in commercial usage by grabbing interest of home DIY’ers first, not the other way around. The new site is fully professional focused, not amateur.

Here’s some of the things I feel are missed opportunites:

  • Where o’ where is mention of IOT? The single biggest “trending” topic for Arduino/ESPs/etc is IoT devices, yet GHI makes no mention nor tie in on their site. How does GHI empower IoT, how do they empower the creator? What’s GHI’s role in an IoT world?
  • Compare and relate to the more popular ecosystems. What does GHI offer that is an interesting alternative to Arduinos or Pis? Why choose a TinyCLRos device over a MongooseOS device?
  • Promote the $#@% out of TinyCLR!! It shouldn’t be 3/4 of the way down the main page. With the loss of Gadgeteer and MS’s support of NETMF, TinyCLR is the differentiator! It’s what sets GHI apart. Sure their hardware is phenomenal, but it’s the option to use your C# skills and the best dev environment that makes this unique.
  • Things like the Gus talks are awesome, we need that amateur focus in many other ways. For example, show custom projects on the main page like you used to. Show people what’s so “cool” about GHI stuff. Grab the young STEM students interest (or people like me) by showing fun ways to use the products. The main page background of GHI’s fab floor is cool, but i’d be more excited by a photo of some GHI device controlling a massive Halloween lighting setup
  • Integrations, integrations, integrations. Create Google actions integration, Amazon Alexa skils, TinyCLR libraries for Samsung ARTIK cloud, libraries for the various home automation hubs like SmartThings, drivers for home automation software like HomeAssistant, IFTTT, MQTT, etc. Heck, you can now run Google Assistant on a Pi, get it to run on a GHI device!

Maybe, after thinking it through, the best experience for someone like me, is to break off the GHI commercial product design and engineering website from a more hobbyist oriented website. In effect have a GHI commercial site and a GHI DIY site.


#8

GHI plays no role in IOT, the I stands for Internet and TinyCLR OS has no networking support and NETMF TLS issues :grinning:
ups sorry i forgot the HAT’s :wink:


#9

You can be sure that GHI have that as a critical component of what they will want TinyCLR OS to support.


#10

I am loving this discussion. You guys keep the feedback coming.


#11

Too much focus on Hobbyist technologies tends to scare away professionals. Also, just the word C# connotes Microsoft, which most on the semi-professional / hobbyist world then to stay away from. Interesting enough, nobody mentions Parallax’s Basic Stamp micro controllers even though they predate Arduino. (note they even have a java micro controller as well). The only reason why Arduino and others gain so much popularity is because they use C or some sort of javascript. Funny part is that if C was used to program micro controllers of the same power and type that we use C# for, it would be a massive undertaking. It’s something a hobbyist may not really be able to complete, if there were doing some sort of major project. (like a g-code interpreter). Just being able to compile such code used to require expensive Keil compilers. It is only through the concerted effort of the open source community, advancements in hardware technology like ARM that such things like Arduino and TinyCLR can even exist. The beauty of using TinyClr is that any language can be used. This is the nature using MSIL. Anyone can create an interpreter and linker based on any language; even C++. <- which would be cool btw. I for one like being able to develop everything in the same programming language and IDE from the embedded up to the cloud. There is a sense of comfort that I get from knowing that the code I write will be supportable for decades to come. C# isn’t going anywhere (nor C, nor Java).


#12

This was fixed on Friday the 13th. (404 errors)
I know it was done because I’m the one who fixed it.:slight_smile:
If anyone still gets 404 errors please fill out the contact form or email me directly at
jay.griggs@ghielectronics.com.
I’m also Google certified in Adwords, Mobile, Analytics, and many more.
So the juice will be back! I have ideas that will increase traffic… alot of traffic!
The old site will be back and new content is coming.
Oh by the way my first day at GHI was October 9th, so I cant speak on anything before that.

Also like Gus said your feedback is very welcome here. Don’t be shy I want to hear it all.


#13

Welcome aboard Jay. I think you will enjoy chatting with many of our community members. There are some very creative people here.


#14

blah blah blah blah blah, welcome to the team, etc, etc


#15

@Gary_Beaver

Validator : You do not meet requirment of text fullfillment and you need to put more than 200 word at least. :smile:


#16

Hi,

I will be writing as a professional user of G400.
We are using about 50 units per year, with a code base around 30k lines of code. We are using netmf 4.3, and not planning to migrate to TinyCLR for the moment.

The choice of using a netmf embeeded system was made around 5 years ago, with the main thing in mind to have a very low time to market, with a very limited number of developper (2 at most).
The goal was achieved thanks to the easy to use libs, documentation, debugger, and the help of GHI and the community (this forum) (and by the way I am new to the forum because I am new in the team).

After a good time of use, we may considere to change the embeeded system for our new line of products (in ~1 year or so). As the feedback is welcomed by GHI, I will not hide anything :slight_smile:

  • We need more and more real-time features. We try tofind workarounds to depend less on timings, but can’t replace “real” real-time.
  • The growth of Linux embeeded systems, with a lot of hardware I/O is really appealing, we can find a lot of help as well on these plateforms, and also when it’s time to hire engineers, it’s easier to find linux embeeded specialists than C#/Netmf specialists. Even if the target of TinyCLR is to aim small devices, we are ready to sacrifice a little bit of compactness to have more comfort. For instance, the debugger for the G400 is a nice feature, and is easy to use for beginners, but the debugging and profiling possibilities are far more advenced on linux plateform.
  • Even if GHI is very responsive, and seems to grow, it is difficult to have only one provider. Let me explain: we (users) are dependant to the decisions you make (TinyCLR), and how you manage the roadmap. So the development of our products is driven by your choices. To be clear : I am not blaming at all the good work you do, and TinyCLR is very promising, and it would not be a problem if we were hobbyists (and wait to have a feature), but as industrial, it is difficult to trust on only one company. Also due to the small size of our companie, we can not help you (with dollars or time), except for bugs reporting.
  • And as mentionned on the original post, the low activity on this forum does not seem to indicate that a lot of people uses the plateform (or nobody has any issues ;-p), and thus there are not a lot of examples and feedback available.

Nothing is decided right now, and maybe we are not be the target of netmf plateform for our futur products, but I wanted to share my point of view. And one again, I am new to this plateform, and I have a lot more to discover and understand, so maybe I am wrong on some points.


#17

Excellent feedback. And by the way, GHI no longer forces you to use and specific software. You want to use, python, keil, gcc, or TinyCLR… It if your call. We give you all options and you pick what fits your needs best.


#18

(I hope I was not the only one who read that entire post in bender’s voice)

I’d like to take a stab at addressing some of your concerns Quinten.

- We need more and more real-time features.
GHI has always maintained the ability to do real-time with their RLP offering. Now with TinyClr it gets even easier. One person (who’s name evades me at this moment) was even able to do ADC sampling and conversion at audio frequency rates while .NETMF was running on the same processor. He calculated that the ADC functions took up about 30% of the CPU’s time. All it made NETMF do was run a little slower.

The option of real time is one of the foundations of TinyClr.

- The growth of Linux embeeded systems, with a lot of hardware I/O is really appealing, we can find a lot of help as well on these plateforms, and also when it’s time to hire engineers, it’s easier to find linux embeeded specialists than C#/Netmf specialists

Lolz. I assure you, that is is more difficult to find help for linux than .NETMF. Case in point. When GHI released “The Module”, which runs debian, myself and another were trying to get it to connect to the network persistently using WIFI. It was a nightmare to find consistent information on how to do it. Given that things can change in the linux world unexpectedly, an without documentation, I’ve found it harder to troll through thousands of pages of documentation to find even a simple answer, than just @Gus, a question.

You don’t need NETMF specialists!!! Anyone who knows C# and Visual Studio can learn netmf quickly, and they are typically easy to find.

- Even if GHI is very responsive, and seems to grow, it is difficult to have only one provider.
TinyClr to the rescue. You can at any time, get suitable arm device and port TinyClr to that platform yourself. E.g. IngeunityMicro

- And as mentionned on the original post, the low activity on this forum does not seem to indicate that a lot of people uses the plateform (or nobody has any issues ;-p)

It’s the lack of issues. TinyClr is totally open source. Not sure why you’re getting that weird exception? Read the code; fork the code; fix the code; problem solved. Also, most of the people still participating on the forum have been here 5+ years. Forums like that tend not to have 19 posts with the same issue posted over and over by different people. That’s the relm of a stack exchange site, not here.

With the release of the AM3358 Sitara Processor into GHI’s line up, it now means that they now have an offering that can relate to any level of embedded system’s development.

(NB We were also able to do C# development on the AM3358 Sitara Processor using the mono framework).


#19

you totally forget only few users are using NETMF/TinyCLR OS and much more users everything else available on the market
you will find enough forums for help for every linux and embedded development issue

thats wrong, some parts of TinyCLR OS are proprietary and closed source


#20

Ah, yes that’s true. my bad. Mostly open source.