I concentrate development efforts on the most requested features, so the more requests for a feature, the better the chance that it will show up in Roastmaster soon!
Please make an IPad version !
I have not seen a switch to make roastmaster work in centigrade. The out put from all my thermocouples read in centigrade and the conversion is slow and cumbersome
Curves were designed to track “Applied” variables – i.e. variables that you apply to a roast via a roaster’s control surface, such as heat, airflow, etc. As such, they don’t graph to any set coordinate system, they simply graph their values from 0 to 100 percent of whatever their ‘max value’ is set at. This makes sense for applied values – I think its easier to understand the visual data in percentages when it comes to roasting appliance controls, instead of concrete amounts – that and curves need to accommodate all the different controls on the market.
I am currently working on expanding curves to include a means to represent measured temperatures – for roasters like you who use thermocouples. These will graph as straight-lined curves – connect-the-dots-style, instead of stair-stepped like applied curves do now, since by their nature the values would migrate smoothly as they change.
If development goes well, I’m going to try and make this as seamless as possible for people who have already started recording temperature measurements in curves (something like a simple toggle switch to change the curve mode from Applied to Measured). If that works out as expected, you’d be able to simply toggle a field for the past roasts you’ve already recorded data for, and have those curves function in the way I think you’re after.
If you have any other thoughts, please let me know
Although this seems lame for this application, is there a chance to add the single serving coffee choices as an option for the inventory?
Also does this sync or share the data with the same app on two devices?
No feature that helps you track your coffee would be lame. At first thought, it seemed out of place, but I can honestly see where it would be useful – either in a home situation or a professional shop. I’m going to shortly shift efforts to an iPad version, so I couldn’t tackle it in the immediate future, but since many professional roasters are using Roastmaster, I’ve already planned to include “bags” as an option for inventory. “Pods” would only be a variation on that, so it may well happen in the future.
You can copy and import databases via iTunes file sharing, but until Apple exposes its sync services, I can’t make two apps sync to each other directly. That’s a feature a number of people have mentioned. Are you wanting to simply share data so other people can see, or sync in a shop-roasting environment? I have plans for both avenues – would like to know exactly what you’re after.
If I can piggy back, I wonder if the internal database backup function can be extended to backup to MobileMe/DropBox/Box.net
I’ve used the file sync in iTunes to move the database between iPhone and iPad, and that’s great. I normally roast with the iPad, and then periodically copy the database over to my iPhone just for reference when out on the go (and to show off your app with real data).
Plus my wife sometimes roasts for me while I’m at work, so having the master database at home on the iPad rather than with me on my phone is desirable.
The iPad is a shared device at home though, and if my wife happens to be reading on it when I want to roast, it’s a little disruptive to have to briefly take the ipad into the back office and move the database over. If I could send it to network storage at the end of a roast, it would be there ready to sync/import on my iPhone for an ad-hoc roast.
In terms of style I’m thinking of say OmniFocus on the iPhone which syncs between the desktop and Mobile apps via a database saved to the root of a MobileMe or WebDav folder. Or the iFitness app which syncs session data between the iphone and ipad version, or allows backup and restore from that network source.
Unless you’re seeing huge databases in production, I wonder if it would suffice to just do a last modified check on the network backup file, and prompt to import the newer copy when the app is launched. If the user agrees, rename the current database to an archived version and import/overwrite the newer network version.
This is less adventurous than supporting merging of multiple simultaneous roasts on different devices, but it would be a convenient first step. Your backup facilities are already head and shoulders above most, this would just extent that to a network destination and perhaps add a few checks and prompts.
While a second of the vote of an iPad version might solve this, I’d sure like the graph size somehow optimized to be a little larger. I find my data points almost on top of one another and the graph a little challenging to follow desired curve vs. actual.
Otherwise loving the app.
iPad please….this will be a real work horse for me once i get it on the iPad…
How cool would this be, a thermocouple add on…that records you’re roast temperature for you….!
Looks like the “Yalees” already did it for beer
and something similar for the iGrill
I wholeheartedly agree!
What surprises me is that no manufacturer has yet (to my knowledge) filled the void of a k-style adapter for the dock port. Seems to be an easy thing to make, with the potential for a huge return. Ah – to be a manufacturer…
I’ve planned to add thermocouple capabilities since the early stages. I’d resigned myself to going the open-source build-your-own Arduino bluetooth path (like in the beer link). I’ve priced those out – that would run probably about $170 per unit – once you buy the board, k-style adapter chip, and a power source, but the iGrill looks promising for those that don’t like to solder on the weekends. Thanks for pointing that out. I have an email in to them to see if I can get a test unit.
Right on, I think the iGrill with the Bluetooth links is way to go, because then you can keep you iPad a few extra feet away from the ‘hot’ roaster.
A place to record roaster maintenance and date would be great…thinking of things like clean chaff screen, replace heating element etc.
Also, I like to give my roasts a unique number/name. A roast name field would be useful. Now I add this to the roast notes section but it gets lost with the other details I sometime record.
Great ideas! Behmor users are particularly keen for a way to track cleaning cycles, so I’m definitely going to work that in. Your suggestions, though, put it in a little different light. Instead of just alerting for cleaning cycles, a “maintenance” section in the roaster view would serve double-duty to record cleaning cycles, and things like you suggest.
My stepson is a Major in the Army and he has started to get into home roasting big time and shares his roasted coffee with his troops. Such an easy way to make them happy. I’m not sure he has an iPhone or iPad and I was wondering if you make this for any other types of platforms, including Windows. Though I now have a commericial roaster and software that tracks everything, including established profiles for roasting, I love your application. I sure wish I had it back in the days when I was just a home roaster. Keep up the great work – it is a wonderful application.
Cabin Creek Roasters, LLC
Loved the pics of the roasting shop!!
Sorry – no, it only exists on Appple’s iOS platform at the moment. One thing people don’t often realize, though, is that it runs on the iPod Touch in addition to the iPhone. I’m not sure about future plans yet, or other OS’s. I’m still working to get the iOS version to a point where users and I feel it’s “complete”, though I can say long-range plans include a OS X desktop version.
Thanks for the kind words.
Using RoastMaster in a small shop roasting business I would like to be able to insert the cost/kg of each inventory addition. It would allow not only the inventory weight, but value, to be immediately available. This would be further useful in determining the green bean cost/kg when constructing a blend, providing input into pricing of the roasted coffee. Currently I have to use a spreadsheet to duplicate most of what is available in RoastMaster to enable costings.
To keep things simple, no currency information needs to be stored.
Great idea! You’re right – doubt there would be a need to worry about the currency. I’d need to give two extra fields besides the cost itself – 1 for units and 1 for measure to allow for different measurement systems e.g. 5.99 per 1 lb, or 24.99 per 1 kg. Roastmaster’s internal conversions are pretty robust – I wanted them to be flexible so features like this would be easy to add down the road, so coding for this would not be hard.
I’ve been thinking about this lately – I’d love to, at some point, allow for lot tracking. Many Roastmaster users are small shops, and seems to be it might be beneficial to track lots. Even home roasters could benefit from this – it would open up the possibility of tracking bean age down to the roast level. That would be a “down the road” thing, and since not everyone would be interested in tracking inventory this way, the current cost/per that you propose will be a fit either way – so I’m going to go ahead and start working on this.
If you have any thoughts on lot tracking, feel free to let me know.
Thanks for the input!
Is it possible for someone to send me the various database settings for a Behmor 1600. It is very hard to read the profile graphs in the manual and I guess someone has already done the work to enter it into their database. To save re-inventing the wheel can we have this type of data posted somewhere for all to share?
I would like to see the ability to post inventory online or send via email. I roast for friends and would like them to see what I have.
Good idea! This update will bring Dropbox, eMail and Documents folder export of several datatypes: Roasters, Profiles, Programs, Curves being the big ones, with import ability from any iOS mechanism that supports files (safari, email, dropbox, etc.). I built the mechanism with things like you suggest in mind as well. Writing export routines is fairly simple – it’s building the mechanism that’s hard, and now that’s done! I’ll try to work it in soon.
Regarding suggestions for reports, it would be good to have some related to inventory – e.g. Current stock, monthly usage, usage as blends / SO, average weight loss, max / min loss, avg cost/kg, total stock value. Perhaps even some kind of dashboard where various graphs / tables can be displayed (favourites).
Any news on when the next version is due?
The dashboard is a great idea! It’s been fun to find out what people are interested in tracking and made available in reports, so I appreciate the input.
As we talked previously, the data export coming in the next update is both a feature in and of itself, as well as the groundwork for further reporting. With the groundwork it place – it will be fast and easy to add reports of just about any type, so I’m very anxious to start it – and this gives me more ideas to go on.
The next update is code-complete – unfortunately, I’ve ran into a bit of an issue with the Behmor curves. Some results aren’t matching testing exactly. I’m going to try and iron it out with Joe Behm as quickly as possible – to see if the problem is in my code – or my understanding of the tech sheet. If it’s going to take some time, I may just pull that feature and proceed with the update without them in place.
Sorry for the delay. I’ll move past it this coming week – one way or the other. I’ve just received the data sheet on the iOS compatible Bluetooth probe – due out 1st quarter of 2012. It’s pricier than I had hoped for, and doesn’t have as a broad a temperature range as I had anticipated, but it’s enough to get development rolling. So I’m itching to get started on that as well
I would be interested to see some predefined green coffee providers listed in the app on purchase such as greenbeanery.ca and sweetmarias, as well as a pick list of coffee beans that might be available, the standard ones. Helps limit data entry when you’re just starting out. Would be neat as well to have a sample db that you can load up so you can see how it might look with 6 months worth of data in it or something.
Thanks again. Really looking forward to the ability to take photos of a roast so I can use it to further asses and learn roasting!
I’d always envisioned Roastmaster having this capability as well. I got in touch with Sweet Marias when the app first launched to discuss a couple of things. They’re nice folks. Their web guru offered up some URL code to poll their databases, but it required knowing their internal bean ID. It was a little primitive to try and turn into a feature for Roastmaster. But – if that exists, they may be willing to add a little functionality for Roastmaster. That’s something I’ve wanted to add every since the beginning, so I’m glad you’re asking about it. Not many folks have, and I try to tackle things based on the amount of requests I get, so I’ll probably look into that further soon.
The next update introduces data import and export capabilities. You’ll be able to import and export roasters, profiles, programs, curves, label definitions, and entire databases. I’ve already installed forum software on the website. I’m just waiting for the update to be approved to organize it and make it live. I’m not interested in reinventing another coffee community, but I do want to give users a place to exchange data, tailored to the app. I plan to include a section of sample data for new users. It will certainly help those just jumping into the app.
Nice job with the update!
It would be great to be able to enter inventory on the PC using cut and paste. I’ve used RoasterThing (BehmorThing) and like to enter the coffee bean notes from the vendor that way. I know nothing about sqlite, but just downloaded a basic browser / editor and it looks like I could use that to do what I want. Just wondering if you’d have any interest in supporting something like this but more streamlined or could give the parameters for the database or have any other comments along these lines.
Also, as I was playing around with importing and exporting databases, I’ve wound up with some extras and can’t figure out how to delete them either using the ipad app or in iTunes.
Thanks Barry – glad you like it.
You can swipe to delete databases in the Utilities/Databases lists. As long as the database is not loaded, it will give you a delete button.
If you’re using import/export to keep databases current among devices, you can use simply choose “Replace” on the device with the old database when importing. If it is loaded, Roastmaster will close it, then replace it with the database your are importing, and open it back up again when its finished.
Core Data (which Roastamster uses) is very finicky about its data. It uses standard SQLite databases, BUT changes to the data are always supposed to happen through Core Data itself i.e. through Roastmaster. When I designed Roastmaster I had a choice between rolling my own SQL, or using Apple’s Core Data. In the end, Core Data won because it is much faster than anything developers can write for a number of reasons – the chief one being that iOS devices don’t have as much memory as desktop platforms, and CD is heavily optimized for a low memory footprint, and very good about flushing its memory when memory runs low. All of this happens at a low level in code where developers are forbidden, so its very fast.
So, sorry – long story short… please don’t edit anything outside of Roastmaster – it would probably have bad results.
Now, about bean vendors. I’ve talked to the folks at Sweet Maria’s about this – they’ve volunteered to supply me with hooks to their library. I looked at it, but the hooks were a bit rudimentary for what I wanted. I wanted a browser-style interface where you could browse their library, and add beans to your library without any input whatsoever, but their prebuilt hooks worked by you typing in a SKU numbers, and having it retrieve the results. I want to revisit this at some point, though – lots of folks have been asking. I’m sure they would be willing to amp up their queries a bit.
Just downloaded the Roastmaster iPad app. I’m a new roaster (home) and this app is really going to make the digital side of my roasting fun. The app is very intuitive overall, but I’m going to have to work a bit to figure out how to get those Behmor roasting profiles input for my roaster. I have already input the profile names, etc., but not time-temperature data. I’m not quite sure how that will work though, given that the A through D programs shrink and stretch these profiles. Any suggestions?
Roastmaster handles the Behmor curves automatically (and a little differently than other curves in the app). As long as the Manufacturer field of the roaster tagged in a roast contains the string “Behmor”, when you tap the curve button you’ll see “Create Behmor Curve” option.
So, just set up your profiles and programs named A,B,C,D and 1,2,3,4,5 – there’s no need to set up curves in the profiles or programs. Since the Behmor depends on both of these in tandem, as well as roasted weight in order to set its internal curves, the magic with Behmor curves happens at the roast level – not in profiles or programs.
When you create a Behmor curve, Roastmaster needs the profile and program information in order to define it. If you want to track these in the roast as fields as well, you’ll have to enter them into the roast separately. I’m going to try and make that part automatic in the future.
When a Behmor curve is selected in the roast graph, the graph scale buttons become “Time Shift” buttons, and time shift the curve the same way the roaster itself does, with respect to whether or not the roast is in progress. So, tap the same time-shifts into Roastmaster that you tap into the Behmor itself, and the curve will stay synced with the roaster.
When you’re matching past roasts in the graph view, make sure to use the curve button in the selector strip if you plan on tracking curves for every roast (I personally do). It’s an easy way to show each and every roast that exactly matches the combination you’re currently roasting with, and also takes into accounts each individual time shift you’ve performed, so they’re always an exact match.
I’ve noticed that the Behmor’s clock seems to vary a bit based on the current live voltage, so there could be a few seconds drift by the end of the roast, but it’s pretty close.
Let me know how it works out for you
Have you considered photo support? As someone new to roasting, the ability to compare the visual appearance to the previous roast of the same beans seems like it would be useful.
I did consider it in the early stages of development (back before iPad came out), but I never could get consistent results between photos with respect to lighting. Even photos of the same subject taken only seconds apart had the potential to show noticeably different colors, to the point it never felt reliable enough to include it in the app.
I did some tests tonight, though, and found that by using the flash on manual “on”, I could get fairly consistent results with an iPhone 4. I do like the idea of it, so I’ve added it my backlog list.
Thanks for the feedback!
I just bought your app and am having considerable trouble trying to manually record temperatures for my current roasts.
Can you enable temperature recording by allowing us to rotate a wheel with our finger. As we move our finger clockwise around a circle, a digital temperature number above the wheel increases (or decreases if we rotate CCW). Each rotation might be 20 degrees, but you can easily rotate several times to increase the temp quickly. We could push a button in the middle of the wheel to capture the displayed temperature along with the current time on the roasting clock.
This would make it easy to record temps as often as desired.
I’d love to see something like this!
The roast gauge doubles as a data entry wheel. Just 2-finger tap it to show and hide the data entry wheel.
It works a little differently than you are describing, but I like your ideas. I designed it more for control-type curves with low ranges (1-10), so higher ranges are segmented in intervals of 5 (not the best scenario). Once you release the wheel, the current value of the wheel is applied to the curve at the current time. It’s a bit crude, IMO, but I’ve found that most folks enter data by tapping the digital readout area, then using the keyboard. Hence, I’ve never had anyone give feedback about that somewhat hidden detail.
Like I say, I like your ideas. It would probably have to be a time-out situation. Once you started dragging (with finer control), then released, the wheel, you’d have a second or so to continue dragging before the event timed out. You could either tap the center area to accept, or anywhere else to reject.
Please have a look at the current implementation and let me know what you think.
I love your program and use it every time I roast. It is absolutely perfect, no more paper notes!
The only thing is for some reason it never queries past roasts! It never displays the 1C time and duration of the past roasts, even if I use the same beans. I really have no idea why. I have over 19 roasts on there so far and it has them stored in memory, but when I roast it doesn’t bring the data up for that particular bean so I know where 1C and 2C has traditionally been. Any ideas?
Thanks for the kind words – glad you’re liking it!
Sorry you’re having problems. A number of things could affect that…
Please make sure that the “Past Roasts – Fetch Limit” is on something other than 0. You can find this by tapping the “i” button near the graph. Having it set at zero effectively shuts the matching off, while having it all the way to the right sets it to an infinite number of roasts.
Also, what selector buttons do you have enabled for the graph? Try turning them all off, leaving just the bean turned on (blue). Does that help?
Also, what does the the text next to “Querying xxx…” say, does it report any matches? If it’s reporting matches, yet you still don’t see data, it’s possible that the graph scale is set too large, and the data is “off screen”. In that case, tap the minus button (to the left of the graph on iPad and underneath the graph on iPhone/iPod) to reduce the scale of the graph.
Let me know if any of this helps – we’ll get to the bottom of it. There aren’t any bugs with past roast matching that I’m aware of, so I’m sure it’s something that’s easy to fix. You’re always welcome to send me your database and I can have a look on my end with your data if that helps.
Let me know.
Any plans for iCloud data storage integration?
I looked into iCloud when the APIs became available to developers. The problem is that the current implementation won’t easily work with Roastmaster’s inventory management, so I opted for Dropbox instead. There was no way to keep multiple inventory transactions from canceling each other out, if they happened too closely to each other – a real problem in shops with 2 or more roasters. I plan to keep an eye on iCloud as it matures a bit, hoping that they will proved some more advanced options for grouped transactions. It’s something I personally want in the app, but need for the APIs to mature a bit first.
Thanks for the response Danny.
Alternatively, is there a way to import directly from dropbox? So, for example, if I’d been using an iPad for previous Roasts but wanted to use an iPhone for another, I could just export to Dropbox from the iPad and then import from Dropbox on the iPhone. Not a big deal, really, but I could see myself using a feature like that from time to time.
Oh sure. All you needs the Dropbox app on your target device. Navigate to the file in the Dropbox app and tap it. Dropbox will tell you it cannot preview the file, but you can still hit the action button (the square with the arrow) and choose “open in Roastmaster”. It will take you back to Roastmaster and import the database.
I use that one all the time – between my phone and iPad. I coded it with exactly what you’re describing in mind, so if you’re importing a database with the same name as the currently active database, it will let you rename or replace the current one on-the-fly. Otherwise, it just adds it to your databases, where you can manually open it later.
That’s awesome … it works! Thanks Danny!
I’m running an iPad 4, and I was wondering if you use the lighting to USB camera adapter as a USB plug for a multimeter, to record temperature.
Unfortunately, no – the USB camera adapter is a bit misleading. As of the last SDK, the official word from Apple was that it doesn’t provide true USB connections. Apple accomplishes camera connectivity via low-level private APIs that aren’t available to developers. In other words, Apple makes the USB magic happen at a low level that they don’t provide us developers with access to, so you can’t pass information back and forth via the adapter with other USB devices unless you can fool iOS into thinking the accessory is a keyboard.
I’m going to look into their hardware manufacturing program again. Last I checked, even that required the accessory be made specifically for iOS devices (which precludes all the probes currently on the market), but I want to check again in case that’s changed.
Unfortunately, now though, the answer is no. I’m hoping, too, that they open up USB on future iOS releases.
Great app. Is there any way that you can change it to where I can type in the alarm time instead of having to set it using the slider on the timer dial?
Thanks – glad you like!
There is no way to set it via typing a number at the moment. A lot of folks wanted an easier way (myself included), so I added an alarm control to the full screen graph (analyzer). It’s much easier to set than using the slider on the gauge, but it’s still more of a visual act than a precise one. Adding a numerical entry has been on my backlog for a while – I’ll add that soon.
I’d really like to try this app out, but am not sure if it would work for my particular set up: heat gun/claypot cowboy method. Wish there was a away to audition apps before you bought it.
I would like to see that functionality added to iTunes as well. I would opt in if so. Nothing exists that I know of, short of maintaining two separate code bases. Sorry – but if you have any specific questions, feel free to ask – here, on the boards or by email.
Would love it if it duplicated the entire roast when when press/hold vs. just a few attributes. Have 612 roasts already on it and when roasting back to back with everything the same it takes time to type everything in again (temp/humid/roast level…).
I’ve added this to my backlog list. What I may end up doing is adding a button – something along the lines of “What attributes would you like to copy” – “Roasted Items”, “All Attributes” and “Cancel”. Given the different permeations of snapshots and timeshifts that can occur with profiles and programs, I felt it safer to skip everything but the roaster and roasted items – forcing users to make a new profile/program choice, which would serve as a reminder and help eliminate errors when using one of these other features. The downside, of course, is that this somewhat defeats the purpose of a copy feature.
Adding an extra button will give me a chance to put up a reminder, and since an alert is already there – it wouldn’t be any extra tapping.
So I know – you are interested in having the Roast Degree copied as well?
Thanks for the feedback – appreciate it!