Explaining to MathWorks about Infinite Levels of Knowledge and Hover

Image Acquisition Toolbox:
Your online, and now the attached price list, is not appropriate for “Home” users.
Today someone fixed the website issue where the license information was not accessible.  I could not open my account information.
Now, when I look at my account information, “Manage Products”, it has  “But Add-Ons” as a working button, and under it there is a list of prices for add-ons for “Home” users with “Image Acquisition Toolbox” listed under “Test and Measurement” for $45.  Out of curiosity I counted. There are 60 entries in that list for $45 for a total of $2700, which gives new meaning and nuances to “Home user”.
When I went to add the Image Acquisition Toolbox to my cart to buy it online it gives a message that should never show up on your site:
“Error: There has been a system error”
I cleared my cache, reloaded the page and got this obnoxious message.  I do not want to use your “Image Processing Toolbox”, it is really not very good (I am a mathematical statistical with background in astrophysics). I just want MatLab to have clean access to my cameras.  Do you understand the difference?  Your marketing department is calling the shots on the website and it is killing your community.  It should be a hundred times larger, but they grab for pennies when gold coins are lying there. So I am going to have to spend $90 (a year?), just to have access to devices in Windows that should already be accessible through MatLab. Shameful. Read below and I talk about how you can get your community to help you fill in the knowledge base.
“Error: Image Acquisition Toolbox requires the following”
Crash Report:
Part of the issue with crashes that I have been having routinely with MatLab is because you are keeping all the Live  Editors as separate tasks under.  I have been rewriting some of my common studies in Matlab and had them all “Live”.
Your list of files in my working directory is everything and too long.  The short list of Live Editors is useful but does not have to be live.  I just don’t want to have to go through my whole list of files.
You don’t have a way for me to select “*.mlx in the “Current Folder”.  I would use it, if it were not so time consuming to search and scroll just to see my current “Live Editor” mlx experiments.
Whoever designed the docking and layout rules never had to do a real project.
I never received an email confirmation of that crash report.  It asked me to send details of the crash to you and add an explanation.  I did that, including my email address which it would not recognize when I wrote it CamelCase as “RichardCollins, TheInternetFoundation”.Org Some programmer only bothered to use the online email version which earlier was forced into lowercase during your registration process.
I checked on Java Chromium Embedded Foundation.  It is routinely causing crashes.  Some require me to hard power down my computer with a switch.  Some go into a long delay waiting for something to stop.  Your stop button for cameras does not really work.  It needs higher priority and should stop instantly.  Now, it usually requires shutting down MatLab.
I have been reviewing the whole Chromium/Electron/NodeJs/GitHub/Python etc complex of alternative software development communities on the Internet.  Anything tied to Chromium is going to have serious maintenance and performance problems.  I could tell you why, but I don’t have time right now.
Webcam C615 is a USB camera that works well in Windows.  I have many usb and other cameras as I reviewed use of cameras on the Internet these last several years.  I am trying to get a sense of what users of the Internet face when they try to use sensors of any kind.  If the cameras and microphones are barely accessible (raw data and controls) – the current sad state of affairs – then how much less accessible the accelerometers, GPS, thermometers, automated radios, telescopes, robots, actuators, control systems of many sorts.  My “client base” is everyone for The internet Foundation – about 7.8 Billion people, of whom, about 4.8 Billion have some level of access to the Internet.
After shutting down all those Live Sessions – but one.  When I tried the camera just now, it worked.  So probably there is a bug in your Live Session Management.
cam = webcam
What your camera properties is NOT telling me are the ranges for each setting.
What is the range for “cam.Sharpness”?
What is the range for “cam.ExposureMode”?
What is the range for “cam.Saturation”?
What is the range for “cam.Tilt” – see list below (note cam.WhiteBalanceMode and cam.FocusMode hid more properties that only show when those are done manually).
I am in the group looking at (MIPI Camera Command Set)  I started rewriting it.
I have been doing this kind of analysis all my life (about 55 years of programming and systems analysis) for many state, federal, international agencies, corporations before the last 23 years with the Internet Foundation.
What I learned is that you can simplify your user interface a LOT if you add the next levels down on your “dot” interface — where the user starts typing a command or object name, types a dot and you show them what comes next.  You have seen it.  But you have not focused on the human effort and community work needed to gather and fill in that information.  Your company doesn’t want to do it, so you get partial capabilities.  On the Internet no one wants to do that kind of work, or wanting to does not have resources.
When I type “cam.” it should show me the names at that level.  it can be extended to have go as deep as needed.  A map of the properties and capabilities of the device or system or group or network.
Finding information about cameras that MatLab might support is a huge undertaking – if everyone of your customers, usually with not sufficient background to do it well or completely – does it alone, duplicating what all other customers have to do.  You apparently don’t have anyone of your many staff finding things and adding that information to the human interface for basic things – libraries and functions for programs, my own files and libraries and functions, properties of cameras and sensors, fields in databases and data sources, resources of online sources, capabilities of packages.  Browsing by click, (or hover which I recommend) is much faster than search.
The biggest problem your users face now is “dictionary”.  You cannot find the spelling of a word, if you don’t know how to spell it.  You are, with your current method across the board in your software and online pages, asking all your users to memorize works or try to find words — then search for those, try to figure things from context.
You can simply tell them.  If you have a decent form for gathering and documenting things, you can let your users document cameras and sensors and libraries and the whole world (you really have bad scientific and technical and mathematical examples online, ask me if you want to know what is going on, it is really a sad waste for all your users and potential users) easily and share with the whole community.
Richard Collins, Director, The Internet Foundation
>> cam = webcam
cam = webcam with properties:
Name: ‘HD Webcam C615’
AvailableResolutions: {1×15 cell}
Resolution: ‘640×480’
Sharpness: 22
ExposureMode: ‘auto’
Saturation: 32
Focus: 51
Pan: 0
Exposure: -6
Brightness: 128
Gain: 64
WhiteBalance: 4000
Contrast: 32
Zoom: 1
WhiteBalanceMode: ‘auto’
Tilt: 0
FocusMode: ‘auto’
BacklightCompensation: 1
>> img = snapshot(cam);
>> imshow(img);
>> cam.ExposureMode = ‘manual’;
>> cam.Gain = 1;
>> img = snapshot(cam);
>> imshow(img);
Richard K Collins

About: Richard K Collins

Director, The Internet Foundation Studying formation and optimized collaboration of global communities. Applying the Internet to solve global problems and build sustainable communities. Internet policies, standards and best practices.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *