It is official, I am starting the vCampus PI Coresight fan club. (despite some early reservations over the name of the tool )
Although as vCampus members we won't exactly get any kind of early exposure or real hands on with it until it is released, I want to briefly talk about the concept of it and how excited I seem to be about it even though there is no extensibility model - yet.
The new search mechanism is exciting, being able to search your entire PI landscape for relevant information is much needed and will work well (it does work well from the demonstrations we have seen so far.) I raised the concern during John and Eugene's presentation at the OSIsoft regional seminar about the need for user friendly filters (don't over complicate the filter GUI!) otherwise the search will soon become flooded with irrelevant results in large implementations of public displays and PI/AF systems. I have every faith they will nail the search filters judging by the rest of the tool so far and that the new search mechanism makes it to the other PI client tools sooner rather than later.
Another reason I felt the need to blog about PI Coresight (after the 2nd/3rd time of watching a presentation on it) is I like to think some of the conversations we as a community have had on vCampus have been listened to and in some capacity they are part of or influenced the tool - would we have had that type of influence and open exchange of ideas without vCampus?
For example, some time ago I talked about having a Yahoo/Google/Bing stocks type trend in PI, another community member talked about a ProcessBook control they have created to mimic the stock trend, etc. The trending in Coresight is slick, very slick, and in particular having different time ranges across mutliple trends and having a cursor on one trend reflected in the time ranges of the other trends was a useful feature. The Coresight trends are just like a stock trend but with the good bits from the ProcessBook trend object mixed in.
I think it is safe to say that when the community speaks, OSIsoft listens!
In John Baier and Eugene Resnick's presentation they also mentioned some of the features coming in later releases around Event Frames (drag & drop an Event Frame and the referenced elements all appear as default symbols, displaying Event Frames on a trend etc) and a favourite of mine being able to associate a display with a particular asset in an AF structure so any subsequent searches use that asset as the default root. This is the tight integration with AF that we heard about from Laurie on the vCampus discussion forums.
What would be extra cool is to be able to define a custom graphic control to be associated with a particular asset (Element Template) so when you drop it on a Coresight display that graphic is loaded from the Coresight server and changes according to data changes. I am sure this will come in later versions with the extensibility model via 'strict' graphic plugins.
I am very jealous of Eugene and the others working on the development of this very nice project.
Now I have to go look at some dull ProcessBook displays...
If you haven't done so already then watch the UC 2011 presentation: http://www.osisoft.com/templates/item-abstract.aspx?id=6754