WTH why isn't there pre-built automations

Why do I need to set up automations for very simple tasks?

Example: Setting Thermostat Temperature, Turning lights on and off, opening garage when I get home, etc

Most of this boils down to why the heck aren’t we presented with a screen of a selection:

Build Automation:

Do something at a specific time (time, sunset, sunrise)
Do something when a person enters a Zone
Do something when something happens (this one is iffy, not sure how to display that)
etc pre-built
Custom Automation

For each of the prebuilts we should be set up with a Wizard. example: What time will this automation run? Date and time picker. -> What will happen? Easy to pick actions -> Are there any conditions that may limit when the automation runs? Done.

Super simple and easy.

TBH (and I could look it up) Idk the difference between Delay and Wait… and it is very difficult to know whether or not I need to use the device or the entity.

Building Automations has always been a pain for me because I have never needed anything fancy…

Main question: What do we need to do to make this possible? Should they be built in the frontend? Each variant of the templates? or should they be done from the back end, similar to how integrations UI is built.

Either way: Building simple automation should be easier :slight_smile:

I think before it can begin to offer automation suggestions, it has to have entities to work with. In other words, it has to limit its recipe suggestions to the available ingredients.

Otherwise, the end-user may choose to automate a thermostat that doesn’t exist (sad Pikachu face).

A bit of challenge because not all gadgets can be auto-discovered.

Very true. And we can do that using the domains of the entities :slight_smile:

I do like the idea but feel it’s a post 1.0 feature. Let’s be frank, the closest wizard-like automation-building feature we have now is the Automation Editor. The wizard needed for your idea will have to be several orders of magnitude better than that.

I don’t think we are far off. Honestly I think I could build it via the frontend only. I just don’t know if that is the preferred method.

I think this would be a good feature to have in 1.0. So implemented before then

Should there be a need to modify an automation generated by this wizard, the end-user will reach for the Automation Editor. What an abrupt downshift that’ll be!

All this to say, the Automation Editor needs TLC, in my opinion, before an automation-generating wizard is developed. However, there’s no roadmap indicating the order of milestones so if this idea is something you want to implement, then go for it.

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You are very correct when it comes to editing these automations. In my mind, if the automation is created using a template then the wizard should show back up maybe :thinking: and then there is always an options for advanced.

But I agree we need an Automation Editor redo. I have been thinking of ideas on how to make this better but I can’t really land on something that I think will make it a lot better enough to change it

Over a year ago, an openHAB contributor proposed a dramatic change to openHAB’s management UI including the way you compose rules (automations). It included a card-based presentation of trigger, condition, and action. He even created a partially functional demo site for it. However, it was never adopted (they chose something more traditional). The demo site continued to operate for the longest time and I was going to direct you to it but discovered that it’s no longer available. There are a handful of screenshots posted but it’s the alpha version and the one I wanted to share was far superior. Anyway, this is one of the very early concepts (the live demo was far more polished):

Three-column mode


From here:


I do really like this type of builder. Idk about the whole drag and drop of the different knows but would really like to design some if this then that type stuff. Thanks for the idea!

I hate to say it, but Apple’s HomeKit version of suggesting automations (at least in iOS14) is SUPER slick. Slick enough that I caught my wife creating animations in HomeKit the other night on her own. My wife is pretty much a non-techie, so for something to allow her to create automations without any technical knowledge, that’s impressive.

Did a quick version of what I think we should go for. Similar to the Lovelace Card picker. We have a Trigger (and etc) picker where picking the trigger would then prompt for different fields. Quick and intuitive. This is just the Trigger part and haven’t don’t the rest. But for the overall redesign of the editor I think this may be the next step. right now there are just two many options in the list boxes. Making it overwhelming. Simple triggers should be easy. And having the ability to make custom triggers similar to today should still be possible

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Looks good. My suggestion is to use the established terminology for triggers. For example, it’s normally called Time Trigger (not a Schedule which is term already employed elsewhere in the UI). Similarly, I believe Zone Trigger is used instead of Location (which is also used elsewhere in the product).

Automation Triggers

This is a duplicate of this one, I’ll close it now.