enhancements to apidemo -- how do i make a file available to you?

what is the preferred way of providing enhancements to the "apidemo" ... i found a typo and have a couple of backwards-compatible changes to make it work a little easier as node.js
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  • MarkK (API Architect) October 01, 2013 13:15
    HI Marshall,

    You can email us at "developer at ecobee com". We do not provide support through that email, but it can be used to send us stuff.

    Thanks!
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  • did'ja get the file? haven't seen a reply, so i'm just checking... thanks!
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  • MarkK (API Architect) October 04, 2013 13:26
    Thanks. We did receive the file. It was forwarded to the developers responsible for the sample app. They will decide whether to use your updates or not. Thanks for taking the time to send us updates.
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  • mark - thanks.

    by the way, if you wouldn't mind forwarding on to the powers-that-be:

    "
    i strongly and respectfully suggest that you open-source the sample app and put it on github. i suspect that you will get receive considerable developer attention by making a library on gethub, particularly in node.js. note that i am not asking you to change your developer procedures or publish the API itself, or to document the API on github, i am merely asking you to open source the sample app

    thank you for your consideration!
    "

    best,

    /mtr
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  • MarkK (API Architect) October 04, 2013 17:18
    Marshall,

    There are some legal issues around that. The sample application is just that, a sample. It is an example and not meant to be a standalone app beyond being an example. We wish to control what it looks like and how it is presented. We also reserve the right to change it at any point in the future to reflect changes to the API. All this becomes complicated when the app is open sourced and people are actually building upon it. We chose not to open source it for those reasons. This may change in the future.
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  • mark - thanks for the reply.

    i am familiar with the arguments being presented...

    respectfully: those arguments were common 10 years ago, but for most of the industry, they became moot. i suspect that the winning argument is that developers act as a multiplying-force with respect to interest, sales, and use.

    if other commercial companies, e.g., lockitron, philips, netatmo, koubachi, can resolve the legal issues, i suspect most companies can as well. these companies have the same concerns regarding change control, and yet they are able to publish their APIs and sample code, with the usual disclaimers that things may change in the future. developers are sensitized to that. in general, as long as you don't surprise developers (e.g., change something without notice), then developers tend to accept the change just fine.

    in the open source driver i wrote that talks to the node.js library in the sample app (thanks for using node.js, by the way!), i list the steps necessary to set-up the steward to use the ecobee. in writing the driver, i was very careful to follow the rules in the license and API, and to ensure that only code i wrote gets distributed. the result is an 8-step set of instructions. a few people other than myself will have the patience to perform these steps. most will not.

    in contrast, when people want to use a nest thermostat with a steward, they go to a config screen enter two parameters, and everything just works.

    i think it is important to have multiple, viable competitors in this space, which is why i spent the week doing the ecobee integration. i respect ecobee's intellectual property rights, and hope they will prove a worthy vendor in the marketplace. it's your stuff, you set the rules, and i can either play by those rules or not sit down at the table. that's fine.

    i'm not even that concerned about having users get a developer's account and generate the keys in order to use the system (since you have to do that with the Koubachi).

    however, i suspect that the barrier to entry is now sufficiently high that people who use the steward to integrate their climate sensors (e.g., netatmo) to tune their hvac systems (e.g., ecobee and nest), are going to take a look at the 8 steps and back away slowly.

    it may be that your customers may neve use something like the steward, or that they may always go for a turn-key, white-glove service. in which case all my arguments are moot.

    however, for the residential market, things need to be a lot easier in terms of setup.

    that's my lengthy exhortation to you.

    thank you for a well-designed API, once i figured out the model relationships it was very straight-forward to program.

    best,

    /mtr
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  • hi. is there any word back on incorporating those changes into the .zip file or in putting the node.js code on github?

    thanks!
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  • MarkK (API Architect) November 27, 2013 16:38
    Hi Marshall,

    Its on the back burner here. The changes are good and viable, however we just don't have the resources right now to dedicate to the sample app. I hope you will understand. We are not ignoring the updates and suggestions and plan on circling back to incorporate them when time is kinder to us.

    As indicated before, we would love to open source the app, we just need to spend some time on making that happen logistically and legally and allow you guys to push updates and fork as needed. That's coming in the future.

    Thanks,
    Mark.
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