The primary focus of this release was to improve the stability of the RedEye system — reducing error messages, improving synchronization between the hardware and the iPhone, etc. This work has set the stage for performance improvements in the next release. Along the way, we were also able to begin implementing some of the usability improvements that our beta customers have recommended.
What’s New in This Version
- Dramatic reduction in “Network Timeout” issues. In the past we were overloading the RedEye with requests from connected iPhone clients. By metering out these requests, we were able to eliminate virtually all network timeouts. In addition, we found a couple of specific situations (for example, when the iPhone wakes after auto-locking) that were causing timeouts, and fixed these problems, too.
- Better synchronization between the RedEye and the iPhone. Previously a network error or other event (for example, prematurely quitting the RedEye application while there was synchronization taking place in the background) would cause activity layouts and other data to “disappear.” In fact, this information was intact on the RedEye device, but the iPhone’s data cache was out of sync. Sometimes re-opening the RedEye application would solve the problem, but in other cases reinstallation of the app was the only way to force a full refresh. Now the application does a better job of detecting these synchronization problems and will re-synchronize without the need to quit or reinstall.
- Changes to Activities, Devices, and Commands appear right away. In some cases adding an activity, device, or command in the setup portion of the application required quitting and reopening the application to see that update in the main Activities, Devices, or Commands screen. These updates now appear in real time.
- Buttons toward the bottom of large activity layouts now work. An issue with screen resizing was preventing us from registering button taps on the bottom rows of large activity layouts.
- New look for activity layouts. We have updated the graphic design of buttons and the activity background. More than just an aesthetic improvement, our goal was to make button differences more visible. Directional keys now indicate their direction, and we are using some spot colors to identify functional groupings of buttons. This should help minimize the amount of time spent hunting for a particular function on screen.
- New, “Jumbo” button size. We added a third, larger button size option to activity layouts.
- Capture signal button moved to the top of the New Command page. In order to make it more convenient to capture command signals when adding a new command (and to make it more obvious as to whether the signal has been captured or not), we moved the capture signal button to the top of the screen.
- Verification of network passwords before switching network connections. Because the RedEye device cannot connect to two Wi-Fi networks simultaneously, it has to drop the current network before joining a new one. While this usually works fine, if the network password is entered incorrectly it will not join the new network and thus requires a network reset and going through the entire network setup process a second time. By requiring double entry of network passwords we now avoid this problem.
- Consistent placement of the “Save” button. Previously the Button Detail screen was displaying the “Save” button on the left instead of on the right (where it appears on all other screens).
- Editing the button name before changing the “Show Label” option no longer causes an application crash.
- Changing a button from Repeating to Normal now saves properly.
- Reliable software update process when there are multiple RedEye “rooms” on the network. Software updates worked fine when there was only one RedEye device on the network, but would hang when attempting to move to subsequent devices. Now it is no longer necessary to quit and relaunch the application to update each room individually.
- Update network information when network security is removed. When connecting to a secured network we store the network password in the RedEye device. If that secured network later changes to an un-secured network, we were not erasing the network password, so the RedEye was unable to connect to networks that had once been secured.
Submitted for App Store review: 3 September 2009
App Store approval: 17 September 2009