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Creating an Open Controller - Now with an Open Tool

January 2016 - Last July we wrote an article about creating an open controller using Sedona Framework. Our feeling was that having BACnet compliance was necessary but not sufficient to having a open controller. If you did not have access to the program on the controller or the tool to change the program, you were effectively locked out of the job even if the controller used BACnet. BACnet is an open protocol but does not provide an open programming language. Our feeling at the time - and it still is - is that Sedona Framework has the best chance for creating an open controller. With the recent introduction of our open programming tool - Sedona Application Editor - we are now closer to that goal.

Our white paper we produced last July entitled Creating an Open Controller with Sedona Framework mentioned four requirements for an open controller.

  • Utilizes an open protocol for network communications
  • Supports an open programming language for implementing control strategies
  • Provides a programming tool that is available to systems integrators without restriction
  • Fosters a community of developers and integrators that share technology for the public good

In the white paper we discussed the four requirements in detail. For the open protocol we chose BACnet. For the open programming language we choice Sedona Framework, and for the open programming tool we chose Niagara Workbench - a tool known to many. Although Niagara Workbench is known to many, it is not known to all. Niagara Workbench is a sophisticated tool supporting a sophisticated technology - Niagara Framework. It is a bit of an overkill to use it to program a Sedona device but if you are in the Niagara channel you have access to Workbench. Those outside the Niagara channel need a solution and that is the Sedona Application Editor which is available to all.

Having an unrestricted programming tool fulfills the third requirement of our open controller definition. But having the tool does not relieve you from understanding how to use the tool in creating control applications. However, Sedona provides a graphical representation of components linked on a wire sheet to create applications which is intuitive and can be easily learned with a minimum of training.

We have developed a presentation entitled Built on the Sedona Framework that demonstrates the simplicity of creating Sedona applications by non-programmers, the abundance of component types available for use, an introduction to Sedona Application Editor, and finally an understanding of a Sedona community of developers and integrators cooperating on creating a truly open controller.

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