Homemade Dashboard


(Silence Dogood) #1

I just wanted to share my project for any other SmartThings users out there who are in the same boat as me. Before ActionTiles launched, I was SUPER excited to see what SmartTiles V6 was going to be, only to be… disappointed.

Let me say that I have nothing but respect for the ActionTiles guys (although I have reason to suspect @625Alex might be a fan of those dirty Oilers…). However, one of the best parts of SmartTiles, for me at least, was messing with the CSS and customizing my dashboard. In fact, messing with code and custom DTH’s etc. is one of the best parts of SmartThings as a whole. Even when we could tweak the CSS of SmartTiles, I built it into a frame of news headlines, music and apps, hence keeping the theme consistent from SmartTiles.

I get that the “ready-made” dashboard is probably what most of their customers are looking for, but after losing a bunch of customization, I personally had to look for something else. With that said, if you are looking for something ready-made, ActionTiles is definitely the way to go; I bought a license for my parents’ place and they love it.

So, all of this is to say that, if you’re like me and want a dashboard that’s customized to exactly what you’re looking for, all you need is Tasker, SharpTools and a few AutoTools plugins.

Some of the main things that I wanted were the ability to combine tiles (ie: status, battery level, temperature), the ability to open apps directly (like calendar, browser, google keep etc.), the ability to control music (plays from Google Play Music through bluetooth speaker) a news ticker (shows local headlines that change every 15 seconds), a better weather tile (among other things, has high and low temp for the day) and, my favorite, the score in the bluejays game (pulls data from ESPN every morning with game time and pitchers, then scores every 10 minutes during the game).

Tapping the weather tile takes you to a 1-day and 3-day forecast.

Tapping the “more” icon on the thermostat lets you adjust the mode and temperature (in half-degree increments), and the 1X1 tile on the dashboard reacts to show the selected mode.

Tapping on the “more” icon for the two presence indicators lets you set custom greetings that play through the bluetooth speaker when either of us uses our door codes.

Again, I’m sharing all this for anyone who feels the current options for dashboards just aren’t quite what you’d hoped. Pretty much anything can be done with Tasker and SharpTools, you just have to put in the effort and make it yourself! If you’ve done something similar or have some suggestions for improvement, let me know!

EDIT: a typo, and apparently it’s rude to mention someone without actually tagging them? :blush: Sorry!

(Ron Talley) #2

This is cool!


If you’d like to see some of the other dashboard projects community members have done, check out the quick browse lists in the community-created wiki, look towards the bottom of the page for the “project reports” section, and choose the “ dashboard” list. :sunglasses:


(Joshua Lyon (SharpTools.io Dashboard)) #4

Wow! I’m always impressed with the cool things people do with SharpTools for Android, but this is really impressive!

Is that primarily using Tasker Scenes to create the UI controls or something else?

And while it sounds like you desired a completely customized inteface, I wanted to note that we also have a SharpTools.io web dashboard now which is ‘ready-made’ but also has an increasing list of customization features including icons, colors, media, hero attribute tiles, ability to open apps, hyperlinks, etc.

(Brad Brockman) #5

Really cool, how did you get started? I would like to do the same! The look and feel of Action Tiles has never been appealing to me.

(Silence Dogood) #6

Yes, this is all done using Tasker Scenes. The only things that I didn’t use scenes for were:

  1. Tapping the tiles on the right opens individual apps, e.g. the grocery list in google keep
  2. Tapping a news story or the baseball score opens the browser to the relevant site (I’m planning on changing it to open in a webview within a scene so it’s a little more responsive)
  3. Tapping the camera tile overlays a TinyCam Pro video feed of the nursery over the news ticker (which I forgot to include in the original post).

I didn’t realize your dashboard was coming along so quickly, I’ll have to check it out!

(Silence Dogood) #7

It originally started as a hack job (see below) to make SmartTiles a little more useful when I first started using SmartThings. The Tasker scene was basically a frame around a webview element showing my SmartTiles board.

If you aren’t familiar with scenes in tasker, I’d start with something simple, like a single button that toggles a light in your house. Once you have that figured out, you can make the button responsive to the status of the light. Once you have that, then it’s just a matter of designing your layout and making each tile toggle and respond to something. Pocketables has a decent intro to scenes to help you get the ball rolling. It might seem a little daunting at first, but once you get over the hump, it’s actually pretty straight-forward.

(Chris Wilson) #8

This is well done. I too have been playing with control through tasker. For me it was a matter that a dashboard doesn’t look great on my phone in portrait mode. Here is a video. This is on Hubitat. But could be done nearly identically in ST. still a wip. But it is very functional.