I am happy to announce the release of PerfectChat. It is a new product from the Perfect Abstractions Ignition development team.
PerfectChat is instant messenger and chat functionality that is very easy to use and add to any existing Ignition project that uses Ignition version 7.7.5 and up.
PerfectChat is freely available to anyone who wants to use it.
It takes less than a minute to install. It does not use a database connection so no database setup or configuration is needed.
It has no configuration. It just works. Here's what the chat window looks like:
Chat messages are stored in memory. They are collected and available as long as the client is running.
Messages can be sent to individual users or to a group chat room.
People can chat with each other even though they are using different projects. The projects need to be running on the same Ignition Gateway.
PerfectChat includes a south-docked notification window that gets displayed when the chat window is closed and a chat message is received. It notifies a user that he/she has received a message. It looks like this:
Clicking on the notification window will close it and at the same time open the chat window and select the user that the message came from.
An Ignition template with a button is used to install PerfectChat. Pressing the button executes special functions from the PA Power Scripting Module that ensure PerfectChat resources are installed without overwriting any existing resources in the project. This enables PerfectChat to be installed in any existing project safely. Here's what the "PerfectChat Installation" template looks like:
The installation of PerfectChat requires that the PA Power Scripting Module is installed. The PA Power Scripting Module does not need a license to install PerfectChat. There is absolutely no license or cost for installing and using PerfectChat. It takes 2 minutes to download and install the PA Power Scripting Module.
Here's how to get PerfectChat running:
- Download this project file: PerfectChatInstallation.proj.
- Using an Ignition designer import the project file into an Ignition project.
- Open the "PerfectChat Installation" template that was imported.
- Put your Ignition designer into preview mode and click on the "Install" button.
- Installation is complete. You are done and there is nothing to configure.
You can now launch a client and open the chat window from the client menu. Here is what the menu looks like:
The "PerfectChat Installation" template can also be imported from Inductive Automation's public cloud templates repository. It exists in the "Chat" category.
I created a video that shows the installation and PerfectChat in action. Video link: PerfectChat for Ignition Projects
The PA Power Scripting Module does not need a license for installing PerfectChat because all scripting functions provided by the Power Scripting Module work without a license when run in the Ignition designer. Since installation of PerfectChat is done in the Ignition designer all of the functionality of the Power Scripting Module can be used without any cost or license. PerfectChat itself does not use the Power Scripting Module.
I do suggest purchasing a license for the Power Scripting Module if its licensed functionality will be useful to you and/or save you time. Here is an article about some of its features: PA Power Scripting Module
PerfectChat was developed by the Perfect Abstractions Ignition development team. Please, feel free to contact us on any question about the chat usage or any development needs or consultation.
Some discussion and improvements are in this forum thread: Add Instant Messaging and Chat Functionality to Any Project
Phil Turmel, from Automation Prefessionals, has been working on some interesting new Ignition modules.
The Time Series Database Cache module was recently released on Module Marketplace.
The Time Series Database Cache module supplies dataset manipulation and database query functions that are optimized for use with large and/or high-resolution database tables containing timestamped data.
Check out the documentation for more details.
Simulation Aids Module
Phil recently released a public beta of a new Ignition module called the Simulation Aids Module. This module helped Phil test projects in-house when physical components were off-limits or didn't exist yet. See Phil's post on the forum about it.
So if you are in Sweden or Europe it might be more convenient to take the classes there.
Having a consistent style when developing Ignition projects helps keep developers in agreement on how projects should be developed, facilitates communication and makes projects easier to understand and maintain.
I've been working on a style guide here: Ignition Project Development Style Guide.
I want the style guide to use conventions that most people are using already, so if the guide says something different that what you have seen or like, let me know.