I’ve been using openHAB in my home for some years now. The choice between Home Assistant and openHAB was made in favor of openHAB. This was mostly due to the core of the system was for me to write my own code instead of a UI where you do “programming” with drag and drop functionality (I like programming ) .
But as OH evolves I am having difficulties as a user to understand in which direction the development are heading.
I based my first setup in OH 2.4 around the sitemaps and later also with Habpanel on the display I use to control my home and I still use this today.
As great as both of these add-ons are, they have had next to no updates since I stared using them and I am beginning to wonder if they are intended to be canceled in a future updated?
OH3 added the UI3, and it seems to be a great UI with lots of functionality. I use some of the features but in all honesty it doesn’t play nice with me and I am having trouble understanding it and finding documentation. In my opinion the UI3 is a step away from why I chose OH and a step closer to HA territory with the dragging and dropping. But maybe I am a dying type of user and the most users like graphical UI’s. But I do like the way that OH integrates the possibility to use drag and drop or write your own code, but I am interested in where the future of OH is heading.
Which features are going to be phased out and can we expect the focus of development to be around a graphical interface, like UI3, and if so are there any place for a old school programmer?
I want to thank all that contribute to OH, keep up the good work.
Sitemaps aren’t going anywhere. Many maintainers still use them in their own systems. If you’re still on OH3 then you haven’t seen too many recent updates to sitemaps because new development has all moved over to OH4 including many updates to sitemaps.
HABPanel has been, would say, largely replaced by MainUI for most users. There are a still a few features that HABPanel gets you that you won’t see in MainUI yet (or possibly ever), but they are few.
To my knowledge, there is no intent to get rid of HABPanel, and it is still maintained with regular updates to keep it compatible with changes to core OH.
It’s important to remember that in so much as there is a roadmap for OH it is broad strokes only and that the fate of many (or most) of its constituent parts, depends more on developer interest and engagement than the decisions of any committee.
OH will not continue to exist if it ignores the experience of new users with low/no programming expertise. So a critical component of moving forward is the development of these “drag and drop” UI based features. But even for people with programming experience those sorts of features are valuable as they let you focus more on the what (make this new complex automation) than on the how (my new complex automation hasn’t worked for three days because I forgot a } ).
I don’t think you have to worry about the fate of the old school programmer. That’s not going to get phased out even as new non-programmer features are added. However, perhaps the best place for an old school programmer worried about OH’s future directions is “get involved”! If there’s an update to HABPanel that you would like to see, file a request on the UI repository or even better, submit your own code with that update. Driving the future of OH is done by users who see a need and have the old school programming experience to fill that need.