Pool Math iPhone app question

bmoreswim

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How about we don't worry about the export and graph it for you in the app. ;) That's for @Leebo, not you Sue. The graphing has been discussed many times but so far has remained as a second tier (or maybe third tier) priority, I'm sure for very valid reasons. For now I'll just have to be happy with seeing graphs in my fitness and finance related apps and not Pool Math.
 

JoyfulNoise

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Graphing looks horrible on iOS and Android phones, slightly ok on tablets and marginally acceptable on Desktops. All the other apps that do "graphing" fake a lot of the output - lots of interpolated lines with smooth transitions that bracket data points to make it all look good...in other words, they are pretty pictures meant to make you go "Ooooooo ahhhhh" but have little connection to reality or add any substantial value. For graphing, one has to always ask - "What is the purpose of the graph?" and "What information is it going to tell me that I don't already know?" In science and engineering, slopes (derivatives) and areas (integration) sometimes tell us things. Interpolation and prediction can also be useful. But in the world of pool management.....meh, they're pretty pictures but don't give much more information than one could glean by simply having the App calculate usage patterns and display spit out the net results, ie, "Last month you used XX gallons of liquid chlorine which is YY% higher than the previous month and ZZ% more than last year at this time..." That kind of info could be gotten by charting a lot of data points and staring at the graph like a 3D Magic Puzzle or, you could just let the app calculate it and tell you the info.

So the burden is to tell the developer this - what additional information is a graph going to provide that can't be gotten by simpler means and at what cost in terms of App development time, debugging, sleepless night making @Leebo answer questions, etc, etc.?

(And no, user experience and looking at pretty pictures is NOT a valid response)
 

bmoreswim

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Graphing looks horrible on iOS and Android phones, slightly ok on tablets and marginally acceptable on Desktops. All the other apps that do "graphing" fake a lot of the output - lots of interpolated lines with smooth transitions that bracket data points to make it all look good...in other words, they are pretty pictures meant to make you go "Ooooooo ahhhhh" but have little connection to reality or add any substantial value. For graphing, one has to always ask - "What is the purpose of the graph?" and "What information is it going to tell me that I don't already know?" In science and engineering, slopes (derivatives) and areas (integration) sometimes tell us things. Interpolation and prediction can also be useful. But in the world of pool management.....meh, they're pretty pictures but don't give much more information than one could glean by simply having the App calculate usage patterns and display spit out the net results, ie, "Last month you used XX gallons of liquid chlorine which is YY% higher than the previous month and ZZ% more than last year at this time..." That kind of info could be gotten by charting a lot of data points and staring at the graph like a 3D Magic Puzzle or, you could just let the app calculate it and tell you the info.

So the burden is to tell the developer this - what additional information is a graph going to provide that can't be gotten by simpler means and at what cost in terms of App development time, debugging, sleepless night making @Leebo answer questions, etc, etc.?

(And no, user experience and looking at pretty pictures is NOT a valid response)
See, I knew there were valid reasons. I agree that in the pool world knowing if things are good, bad or ok are really key. Knowing your trend on something is less important. Doesn't mean I wouldn't look at them and value having them, but more out of interest than need. I'm not involved in any other apps where something I'd suggest would get actual consideration, so I just see what they present. And charts/graphs clearly appeal to people, so I see them and enjoy them.

But I hope you aren't telling me that my fitness apps are making me think I did more/better due to the interpolation, smooth transitions and bracketed data points!!
 

Leebo

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One of the largest things also is often (not always) graphing data points is a long term project. In fitness you want to see that over weeks of taking 10,000 steps a day you’re seeing a decrease in weight. This differs somewhat from pools. Pools you’re tending to look only at the last week or two to help avoid algae.

Now granted this is mostly looking at chlorine. When looking at CSI it does tend to be more long term, but beyond that I’m interested in hearing what else people are wanting to learn long term about their pools.
 

JoyfulNoise

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We don't track bather load which might be useful....just a quick button to log the number of people that swam that day (or at a specific time) and for how many hours. Sometimes my pool will sit empty for a week with no use because we're too busy running around but I don't always remember that. The App could track that and then pop up a reminder that says, "Hey, no one has used the pool in 10 days...are you sure you don't want to just fill it in and plant a garden instead?"
 

Dirk

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Nov 12, 2017
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One of the largest things also is often (not always) graphing data points is a long term project. In fitness you want to see that over weeks of taking 10,000 steps a day you’re seeing a decrease in weight. This differs somewhat from pools. Pools you’re tending to look only at the last week or two to help avoid algae.

Now granted this is mostly looking at chlorine. When looking at CSI it does tend to be more long term, but beyond that I’m interested in hearing what else people are wanting to learn long term about their pools.
What Pool Math could do better for me is "reminder-centric." Whether that's a graph, or textual data or a pop-up reminder, or some combination. I run an SWG, and an IntellipH. I had them both dialed in perfectly the first year, and religiously noted in Pool Math when I turned up/down the dosing/% or the pump's runtime. I was thinking that would make the adjusting in year two much easier. But year two was much harder for me, and I never did get either device dialed in as well, because I was busy and didn't take the time to scroll back through pages of log entries to try and find every note I left myself about the SWG, IpH and pump settings. I would consider those long term (annual, anyway).

So back in post #14 of this thread I was scratching down an idea, of what I would like to see "at a glance," on one page. Not sure that's chart worthy, but if, ideally, it could tie in to some sort of pop-up reminder, that it's time to turn up/down the SWG (or other auto-dispenser), and the corresponding pump runtime, that would be helpful for me. As I mentioned, if there was a history of all those settings adjustments, going back a few years, I would eventually see a trend emerge (which might be graph-worthy). So I'd end up with something pretty reliable: every mid-March I fire up the SWG using X settings, every May 1st I turn it up to Y settings, July x I turn it up again, then back down the other way for the second half of the year. Ditto for acid dispensing. I imagine folks with Stenners have to do something similar.

Similarly, while the app does indicate how long it's been since I brushed, I promptly learned to ignore that. But a user-selectable pop-up reminder of when to brush, when to clean the filter, when to check the pump basket, whatever, might help users with their pools. Tie all that in with the device's calendar system, and/or it's notification system, and voila; digital nag! Who doesn't love to get nagged to go take care of the pool!!

Does that qualify as "what else people are wanting to learn long term about their pools?" I'm not so concerned about chlorine usage and temp's etc, it's more about what my pool needs maintenance-wise and when to do those maintenance items. It could take years to develop some of these maintenance schedules, and looking back through years of log entries to build those schedules isn't working for me.
 
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