968x601 Curves General

Roasting curves progress

Figured I’d take a break from coding tonight to post an update on roasting curves. They are basically completed, and in the beta-testing stage. Though it’s not ready to release yet, it getting close. I took a slightly different path than the one I originally started out on, but the result is something that I feel is even better than I had anticipated.

Based on the feedback I’ve received, people like the roasting interface.  I struggled to add what, in actuality, is a very complex concept, in a way that is unobtrusive to those that don’t need it. The premise of any good iPhone app is simplicity. Roastmaster is certainly not a simple app, but I’ve tried very hard to keep it looking and feeling as simple as possible. I’ve tried to carry that over into the implementation of roasting curves. Take a look at the progress so far.

The concepts behind curves are simple…

  • Any roast, profile or program can contain as many curves as you like
  • Each curves can contain as many nodes as you like
  • Nodes can be entered in one of three ways… by dragging the silver ring around the gauge (when in curve mode), tapping and entering text into the digital temp readout (will be timestamped at the moment of editing), or by accessing a dedicated table view like other Roastmaster variables.
  • Tapping the new gauge mode button will toggle between the standard gauge mode, and curve mode (the gauge shrinks to half-size, encompassed by a draggable temperature ring, and three curve editing buttons). Tapping the mode button again will return it to the standard mode.
  • Each curve has a customizable maximum value variable (500 is default). This will allow you to track either degrees or arbitrary values (such as tick marks on a gas grill, or stove, etc.)
  • Whole curves and individual nodes can be selected and modified from either the roasting console, or via a dedicated Curve view like other variables.
  • Curves can be copied and pasted between roasts, profiles and programs

Hand in hand with the new curves, I’ve beefed up the graph view to support the addition of curves. It’s finally become more what I envisioned when originally designing it. I shared many of your thoughts on the shortcomings of the graph view and set out to fix them on this release.

  • The graph view now displays all of your curve data. The selected curve is filled with a transparent version of its unique color, and stroked thicker than any other unselected curves, with visible nodes. Unselected curves are visible, but with a thinner stroke, and no fill color or nodes.
  • Tapping the graph view toggles the selected curve – stepping through all of the curves with successive taps.
  • The graph view now displays duration data of the roasts it is previewing, in addition to 1st and 2nd crack data
  • It now also displays past curve data as well, at a user-definable transparency setting
  • The graph can now function in “Benchmark” mode. Tapping the blue magnifying glass icon in the selector strip above the graph will put the graph into benchmark mode. You can manually select as few or as many roasts as you like to be displayed in the graph. This gives you ultimate control over exactly what data and what roast you are trying to match. This is a very powerful and much-needed feature.

I’m still a few weeks away from finishing up testing, and final tweaking on roasting curves and benchmark matching. This is my number 1 priority until it’s finished. I need to tie all of this into Roastmaster’s automatic past roast matching algorithms, but I don’t anticipate that being terrible difficult. To those of you waiting… thanks for your patience – I believe it will be soon!!

Also – I want to thank everyone who’s contacted me with kind words, requests and suggestions. I take all of your suggestions to heart. Roasting curves is by far the biggest feature request, so naturally, the one I tackled first. Having access to the database is a close second. I am trying to get that taken care of in the next release as well.

If you use Roastmaster, and like it – please spread the word!

About the Author

Danny HallHome Coffee Roaster and App DeveloperView all posts by Danny Hall »

  1. Thomas
    ThomasSep 22, 2010

    Hi Danny, this looks like every home-roasters dream! Any word on whne it’s going to be released?


    • Danny Hall
      Danny HallSep 22, 2010

      Hi Thomas

      The curve functionality is complete and tested – so lots of progress has been made. As I tested, though, some of the intricacies of how profiles and programs need to adapt to different users’ needs crystalized. For instance, I roast with a Behmor. My profiles and programs need to remain static (they are factory set). Hottop users will want programs that are editable, with their own curves, but be able to change them as they change their memory settings, independent of roasts that have used them in the past (different from static profiles and programs). Cafe, or other manual roaster users might not care about either as it relates to the roaster itself, but would probably want to use profiles to store favorite curves, notes and ratings and such, as a way to easily apply a rough curve as a start, and tweak as they roast. In essence, the database needs to know when to reference a master profile/program and when to create and reference an editable copy instead of the master.

      Long story short (too late) I finished the database upgrades last night that will allow this functionality. My hopeful schedule is finish up the remaining coding by the end of the weekend, then concentrate on writing the help files needed to explain it all, test for a week, then submit to Apple. My hope is that the 1.5 update will go live in latter October.

      Thanks for posting!

  2. Vic
    VicNov 05, 2010

    Were’s the update! Sounds quite impressive can’t wait to see this thing.

  3. Danny Hall
    Danny HallNov 08, 2010

    Hi Vic!
    Shortly after the last post, as I was testing – it became obvious that the whole static/dynamic profile scenario was cumbersome, and involved too much thought from the user’s standpoint – i.e. it was more difficult than it needed to be. I approached it from a different angle and made the whole thing transparent to the user. Profiles and programs are now back to being a single, clear entity, until you edit them within the context of a roast – then they become snapshots in your roast – this allows free editing and tweaking of profiles and programs as you roast, and should work comfortable for any roaster on the market. In final testing as of Saturday. If all goes well (it is thus far) I plan to have it to Apple this Friday.
    Sorry for the delay – but it’s almost done!!

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