Improve Scene editor, allow scene edits without setting devices' states

Introduction & context
There was an issue on Github somene opened as the behavior of the new Scenes editor introduced in 0.102 was seen as buggy. I completely agree to this. I wanted to comment in there, but the issue was locked, so noone can comment on that.
I opened a thread in this forum regarding the problem: [BUG?] Scene editor activates scene when loading the editor

Feature Request
Give a choice to the user if entering the scene editor should trigger the scene immediately or not.
I propose 2 solutions:

  1. A checkbox in the Scene Editor GUI like “interactive scene setup”. In case the checkbox is unchecked - then everything happens without sending control signals from HA to the devices behind the entities. So entity states are set, but no devices are controlled when making edits.

  2. or a “Preview” button in scene editor which triggers state changes on user demand. Then one can easily preview the scene.

In both cases - by default one should be able to edit a scene “offline”, without actually changing the real states of the devices during the process of entity state tweaking.

I think the current behavior is just not user/smarthome fiendly as it enforces device state changes right after one opens the scene editor (even accidentally) without even touching the entity states. I think this approach is just too “aggressive”.

Quote from my post at: 0.102: Official Android App, Almond, Scene editor

Completely agree… I don’t want my skylight opening and letting the rain in to my house just because I am editing a sunny scene when it is raining!!

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Really happy with the scene editor addition! Great new feature. Just tried it out…

See the merits for a scene preview button.

Thanks for all the improvements folks. HA keeps going from strength to strength :+1:

Came here for nearly this feature request.

My problem is that sometimes some of my hue lights are disconnected from power.

If I want to edit a scene with 6 lights (4 disconnected), and only want to change one brightness value, I have the problem that the 4 lights disconnected were saved with state unavailable (so all settings of them are lost).

Very unintuitive and annoying. So if you could show all devices with their saved settings (maybe disable unavailable devices for editing because features are missing), edit completely without live showing the changes and have a preview button (or optional live mode) that would be fantastic! At the moment I avoid the editor and keep editing in the yaml file.

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This is a pretty essential feature, and might make me do most of my automation in HomeKit instead. I need to make an “Everything Off” scene to automate when I leave the house. However I’ve got a relay connected to my computer screens I need to program to turn off. If I program it to turn off I lose my computer screens and can’t actually continue programming!

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I agree with this. I was surprised to find that when I click to edit a scene, all of my devices are set to the state they are in the scene. At first I thought this was a bug with the UI, where it would register any click as an activate command. I would argue that is probably how most new users will see it.

After some investigation I now understand the problem. The developers wanted the scene state to be live, such that you can see what your scene will look like while you are editing it and know that, if your devices look right in real life, the scene will restore that state when it is activated.

I see the utility, but would say this is unintuitive behavior. When I click to edit a scene, I expect to edit values, not change the state of my devices. I recommend a separate interactive mode for this, where the traditional edit behavior is the default but you can still use interactive mode if you wish. There are too many unintended consequences of this interactive mode for it to be the only mode available from the UI.

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Agreed that this should be changed. I can think of several situations where a live preview is undesirable (or even dangerous). Here’s a few off the top of my head:

  • Water shutoff valves that close if a leak is detected. You have to be careful to never edit the scene while someone is showering or your dishwasher’s running.
  • Scenes with climate controls. I don’t want to change the HVAC to heat just because I’m editing a winter scene in the summer.
  • Anything involving a security system. I can’t edit my ‘Away’ scene that arms my alarm to away without accidentally triggering with a motion sensor.
  • Lighting. This one is a bit more obvious, but you can’t edit a scene that turns off the lights if a person is currently using them.

My temporary workaround is to only edit scenes like this in the generated yaml rather than in the UI. That said, from time to time I still forget an accidentally trigger a scene through the editor.

I’m a fan of the “preview button” idea mentioned above to preview a scene when desired.

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Same. I run into the situation where I am adding or editing one of my lighting scenes and I’m asked every time why I am messing with the lights in the house. Ugh! Would be nice to create or edit scenes in the UI without activating the scene.

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Absolutely.

Especially when so many people are working from home at the moment. The only chance I get to work on the HA implementation is with other people in the house / after dark.

Also the ‘why the hell has XX not worked’ only to be followed by ‘stop turning the lights off’ when trying to tweak something.

It also seems such a trivial feature to implement.

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Can’t agree more. It’s a pain to not be able to edit scenes without the lights going on/off.

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Any news on this one? I love the UI editor, but loading a scene on edit is not workable and sometime dangerous :slight_smile: A “preview” like option would be really great!

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This is needed! I HATE that I have to wait for everyone to be out of the home to start tweaking that ONE scene that needs it via GUI.

In addition, I would like and “advanced” dropdown for each entity that is part of the scene that allows me to toggle on/off whether I want the setting to be stored as a part of the scene.

For example:
I set a scene for evening, where I want to turn on lamps, BUT I also have adaptive lighting installed. I want to be able to turn the light on, but I don’t want to set the brightness or coloring. At 7pm in winter it could be 30% and 2750K but in summer it might be WAY higher than that (95%?) and 5000K.

Right now I have to go into the file editor and edit the yaml of the scene and reload it. It’s OK, but it would be much more user friendly in the GUI.

Something to ask me what properties of each component I would like to remember for the scene if I toggle “Advanced Mode” or whatever would be perfect.

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How would we actually get this logged for development? Surely this could be broadcast to a bit more direct audience, this is a pretty central UI request/improvement.

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Yeah I just woke up all 3 of my kids by accident simply by editing the wrong scene. This is terrible. I really like the functionality but it shouldn’t just apply the scene by editing it! There should be a live apply switch so you can mess with it and see how it is (or not if you’re messing with it when it will impact people or impact things happening in the house) or edit it offline.

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It works how I’d expect it to.
The same way as setting lutron scenes or scenes in many other systems. It’s so you can see the effect of what your editing.
That said, a toggle button for live preview wouldn’t go amiss.

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Agree, this is an issue for me also.

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Agree!

Everytime I edit the night scene (were all window shutters close) during the day I get absolutely pissed off!

Please make it happen.

Thanks

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for me too…please make it possible to change the scence without turn on / off the lights …

Is this in development?

Thx.
Regards
Herbert

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Hadn’t seen this feature request until now but 100% agree. I turned all my scenes into scripts because of this since I would go to look at them and they would activate. After a couple times of accidently activating them I decided they had to go, can’t be waking people up to edit scenes.

I would strongly recommend the following changes:

  1. Do not activate the scene on entry. Instead have a preview button at the top.
  2. When adding or editing a device/entity to the scene offer the user two alternatives: Capture the current state of the device/entity or manually set the desired state as yaml

I think capturing the current state of the device is a good addition. It gives a completely code/yaml free approach to making scenes and is inline with what competitor applications offer. I just don’t like that tweaking the scene or even just looking at what its doing currently requires activating it. It would be nice if you could add one light to it in isolation or tweak the brightness of the lights without touching/activating the covers/switches/etc. that are working fine.

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I have my computer screens on a smart switch. When setting up my scene to “turn of my studio”, my screens went dark and I could not continue the setup. Enacting live states during setup is dangerous and I cannot think of any rational reasons why this would be desirable (except maybe that it was easier to program I suppose). Please give us an option to turn of live states in the editor or turn it off altogether. I would like to be able to set the states without the states being enacted (like in any other smart home app). I am sure most users will want that too. That said, keep up the good work of creating an awesome open source app. Cheers!

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