We've just released updated groov View apps in both the App Store and GooglePlay.
These are optional apps you can download for free and use to see your groov operator interface on iOS or Android mobile devices. Using an app instead of a browser can help reduce distractions and keep focus on the interface.
Version 2.2, just released, lengthens the timeout from 20 seconds to 60 seconds, which may help with slower network connections.
The previous version was just released in December, so if you haven't updated yet, you'll want to now. It added the ability to configure multiple groovs (for example, if you have more than one groov Box or groov Server). Once you've configured all your groovs, you can:
- In any groov screen, simply swipe to the right (on iOS) or tap the back button (on Android) to see your whole list of groovs. Then tap to view the one you want.
- Choose a default groov, one groov you want to see whenever you open the app. You'll still be able to swipe or go back to your list. (Tap the groov in the list and choose it as the default. In iOS, then also choose Settings > groov > Enable default device.)
- Hide the list so you can't see other groovs. (Choose Settings > groov > Enable kiosk mode. In iOS, you'll see only the first groov in the list. On Android, you'll see the groov you've chosen.)
Note that this kiosk mode is different from Guided Access mode in iOS. In kiosk mode you're limited to one groov interface, but you can still get to everything else on your phone or tablet. In Guided Access mode you're limited to the groov interface only; you cannot use the mobile device for anything except groov. Guided Access mode is perfect for using an off-the-shelf mobile device as your machine interface.
Get your groov View app now:
Researchers at Michigan State University Foundation's biotechnology research center rely on deionized (DI) water for their experiments.
But with a limited supply of DI water, they sometimes ran out before an experiment was completed.
Facilities Director Phil Hegge knew that the best solution was a costly upgrade to the center's ionization and filtration system. A low-cost temporary solution, however, was to give researchers up-to-the-minute data on the water supply. They could monitor the water level in the tank and know whether to reschedule an experiment.
See how Hegge was able to quickly create a simple interface that researchers now use to monitor tank levels from their own smartphones, tablets, or computers. Read the groov case study.
Do you have an Allen-Bradley PLC? Would you like to monitor or even control parts of your system with your smartphone or tablet?
Our video groov your A-B shows you how easy it is to do exactly that.
Opto 22 engineer Ben Orchard steps you through it:
- 1. Import tags from your A-B PLC to the tag server.
- 2. Import tags to groov.
- 3. Attach tags to gadgets.
How does it work? Since groov is an OPC-UA client, it can talk to any system connected to a communications platform like KEPServerEX, which acts as the tag server.
Watch the video, and then download your free trial of groov Server for Windows and try it for yourself.
(If you don't already have a tag server, you can also get a free trial of KEPServerEX.)
Watch the groov your Allen-Bradley video.
Get the groov free trial.
groov is designed for building simple mobile operator interfaces, but some of you have asked about more advanced features.
For example, you've asked if it's possible to put one gadget on top of another in groov.
In most cases that won't work, because the gadget on top "wins"—it's the one users will see and be able to use.
But sometimes you can use a special trick to put an image gadget on top of another gadget and have the combination work to your advantage. The two graphics above show one use of this trick: making an arrow appear or disappear based upon whether you're filling or draining a tank.
Our artist John Garrett is great at discovering clever ways to work with graphics, and this is one of his discoveries, explained by OptoMary in a recent groov forum post. Mary used the trick for a fun, basic whack-the-gopher game. (The game got a good response locally; gophers are a common pest in Temecula.)
The idea is to put an image gadget on top of another gadget that changes color, like an LED. If the image and the gadget are the same color, the image will "disappear." Of course it's still there, but you won't be able to see it. When the gadget changes color, you'll see the image.
For the arrow, John created a simple scalable vector graphic, or SVG, with a transparent background, using a color like one of the colors available for an LED gadget in groov. He dragged an LED gadget to the screen, set its false state to match the color of the graphic, and set its true state to be a contrasting color. Then he dragged an image gadget on top of the LED and selected his SVG file as the image.
Voilá! When the LED is off, you see only the LED. But when the LED is on, there's the arrow.
groov uses SVG because these graphics scale so well; that's why the same graphic automatically scales to fit your phone or your web-enabled TV, or anything in between. So make sure you save your graphic as SVG.
John notes a couple of caveats when you're playing with this trick:
- First, because groov snaps gadgets into place, you may have to use trial and error to get the arrow right where you want it on the LED (for example, you may have to add some white space at the top or bottom of the arrow).
- Second, it may be difficult to match colors of the arrow and the LED exactly, but as long as they're close, the arrow will still seem to disappear.
See how Mary made the whack-a-gopher game and some more details in the groov forum. Hey, you can even download the game and play it yourself!
Do you have groov yet? Get groov.