Routines need independent schedulers, not mode changes

Routines need independent schedulers, not mode changes. It is not really practical to make everything dependent on a mode change because if that change doesn’t happen it’s a domino effect of failures. Worst thing is, they are not really failures. The system does exactly what it was supposed to do but to the user it appears as a failure because the system didn’t do what I wanted it to do.
Making routines depend on modes can be useful but it shouldn’t solely rely on it or be the only option.

This is the rules engine issue. People have been asking for an official rules engine for as long as smartthings has been out, and staff had posted that they intend to deliver one eventually, but so far smartlighting is what we have.

There are a lot of alternatives.

  1. custom code For an individual rule routine, you can tie that to a switch and then control that switch coming on many different ways using custom code. But it can get complicated to set up.

For a list of quick browse links to the community created smart app section of the form, see the community created wiki:

Also check the marketplace section of the mobile app, as there are many helpful smartapps there, including the one that lets you tie a routine to a switch. (Routines used to be called “hello home actions” or “home phrases” but they’re all the same thing. )

  1. If you have iOS, there’s a nice third-party app, smart rules (iOS only), which costs about $10 and gives you an if - then - while structure. I considered it money very well spent. But you can’t use it with android or Windows. It’s the method which requires the least amount of technical background.

  1. If you have android and you’re comfortable using Tasker, there is another third-party app, SharpTools (android only) which gives you a lot of different options. It’s not as graphically intuitive as smart rules, but it’s very powerful.

  1. If you want to stick with free code, there is a new development project underway for an extremely sophisticated rules engine called core. This has nested ifs, multiple conditionals, private variables, all kinds of things. But it’s just gone into beta so there may be glitches. And it really requires A lot of technical understanding to use it, although there are many community members who will be glad to help you set up your rules. It runs as a smart app, so I believe it will work with all three phone types, although I’m not 100% sure about the Windows phone.

So those are four possibilities, although they don’t all work for everyone. But many community members use these and find them very helpful. :sunglasses: