simpledashboard.io

How it Works?

1. Design

Design your personal dashboard and save it as scalable vector graphic. This can easily be done with free software like Inkscape. This template contains already the information for the Mqtt broker.

2. Upload

Upload your template to this page. We will analyze the template and set up the connection to the defined Mqtt brokers. We will host it for a short period for free with an update-rate of 1 refresh every few seconds.

3. Preview

View what your template would look like with the data filled in. Along with the preview you get a detailed offer. If you don't like it - go back to step one.

4. Buy

If - and only if you like the result you can buy a hosting subscription for the template. All payments are processed via Paypal.

5. Embed

As result you get a link with a periodically updated image of your data. Feel free to embed it wherever you want.

About this service


The Internet of Things allows objects to be sensed and controlled remotely across existing network infrastructure, creating opportunities for more direct integration between the physical world and computer-based systems, and resulting in improved efficiency, accuracy and economic benefit. But there is one drawback: It doesn't come with built-in visualization !


Of course - there are different IoT dashboarding solutions which allow you to view your Mqtt-data in realtime, but this does often not fit your exact needs. We merge your template with your public available Mqtt-data into *.svg images which can be scaled without quality loss. From there on you can embed it in your webpage, display it on your control center or do whatever you want.

simpledashboard.io principle

Frequently asked questions

General

Why this service ?

Because dashboarding is cool - and it can be simple as well. We find that the only limitation for visualizing your IoT data should be your own imagination.

Is the beta version free ?

Yes and no. We use the beta platform to test new features, to improve existing ones. This means that we reset this instance from time to time, purge all the dashboards within it - so don't upload anything business critical, but feel free to upload as much as you want - we will not charge anything for it, but as return we expect you to report errors or strange behaviour.

Is there a way to run this service in-house ?

Counterquestion: Why the hell do you want to do this ? ... Do you love to over-complicate things by hosting and managing you own server farm ? - The short answer is: In general we are not offering any offline solution of this service. If you really want to run it on your local network then drop us a line via the contact form, and we will come back to you.

We have a mqtt server within our company - can you lookup content from there ?

No. This would mean that we would have to log into your company network which is not what we (and most propably also not your it department) want. If you want to build a dashboard with data that origins from within your company then you have multiple choices:
  • Replicate it to a public mqtt server.
  • Setup your own public available mqtt server and replicate it to there.

Do you support MQTT feature <XYZ> ?

The short answer is: Try it out! Upload your file and check the results. We try to keep track with the current envolvements in the IoT scene and if a new, cool feature pops up then we will implement it.

Design

How do i create a dashboard ?

Dashboards are basically just plain *.svg files with a bit of annotation on them. The simplest way is to draw your dashboard in Inkscape and you put your annotations onto it when you are finished. Text example The image shows the process: The textfield text4277 has a filled out title that points to the mqtt server and topic mqtt://test.mosquitto.org/temp/random where you want to fetch the data from. The additional description can be left blank, but it can also be used modify the value on the fly. In this example we take advantage of this methotology to append the °C to the value. You can pre/append further values by utilizing the .. operator which concatenates strings.

Which attributes can be influenced ?

This depends on how your template is structured. To give you an idea which attributed can be influenced we are displaying them in the status page. Here is a neat example which uses the value of the mqtt://test.mosquitto.org/temp/random topic to influence the height of a box: Lets have a look at an example: Box example Since we try to manipulate a box (and not a textfield as in the example above) we have to specify what we want to do with it - and this is done in the description field. It tells the dashboard rendering engine to manipulate the height attribute of the selected box. The height is mathematically seen a function of the current value from the client. In our case we need this to scale the value to the scale values, but in general we can say: The higher the value from the client the higher the bar will be (- as long as the value looks like a number). This works for every other attribute which is listed in the status page of your dashboard as well.

So we can conclude that we can influence every attribute which is available in the svg tag that makes up the element. Try it out - it is not as complicated as it seems !

Can i access values of other datapoints / historical values as well ?

Yes, of course, you can do both. Normally the most recent value of the current datapoint is stored in the variable value. This is perfectly fine for the most applications, but if you want to combine the values of two datapoints (like a sum of two datapoint values) or if you want to run calculations on historical values (like an average) then this is not enough.
Other datapoints
You can access the (raw-)value of another datapoint by utilizing the datapoints table. It contains the most recent value of all the other datapoints. So if you want to access the value which is stored in the textfield with the id text4374 then you can access it via datapoints['text4374'].
Historical data
Historical data is also available. The system stores the last 50 messages in a FIFO managed table called historical. The most recent value is always available in the value variable. The next oldest is accessable in the first place of the historical table: historical[1].value, the second oldest in historical[2].value and so on. If there are no historical values then the table returns nil.

What are the technical limits ?

To keep our service fast and secure we have to enforce some limits. These limits can be categorized into the following categories:
Service related limits
  • The update rate is between 10 and 600 seconds.
  • The subscription time is variable between 1 and 35 days. After this time you have to purchase your dashboard again.
  • We do not send you a reminder if the dashboard is about to expire. If you don't want to miss the retirement date, please use the provided calendar link from the status page: []
  • We disable dashboards which are causing security issues, technical difficulties or which are not following our terms and conditions without prior information.
  • To maintain a certain security level we are displaying the rendered dashboards only within <img> tags. This means that any kind of resources which are linked into the dashboard and also some *.svg related features like animations or embedded scripts are not available in the previews. If you really need this then you have to open the resulting file directly via the fullscreen button []
Template related limits
  • The maximum accepted template size is currently 500 kB.
  • We accept only valid svg templates.
Message related limits
  • The message throughput is limited to 10 messages per second per client. If this limit is exceeded messages are discarded till the limit is OK again.
  • We accept only messages with a length up to 50 bytes.
  • We keep the history of your last 50 valid messages.
  • We are only accepting messages which are composed of these characters: ASCII characters (A..Z and a..z), digits 0..9, and the following special characters: ,.@[]]{}_"'

What (free) mqtt broker do you suggest ?

MQTT is standardized, and our clients strictly follow these standards. This means that we do not prefer any vendors.
Run your own server
If you set up your own public broker (like mosquitto, ActiveMQ, HiveMQ, ...) then it will work out-of-the-box, without any limitations. Just install it, check that it is public available (check firewalls) and thats it.
Try a free broker
If plan to use a free mqtt broker like test.mosquitto.org or iot.eclipse.org then it is possible that our service hits the limit of simultanous connections to these servers. In this case all connections are dropped and you (as well as all the others) will see no changes in the values. However - for testing purposes this is mostly OK, but we do not recommend to use it in production environments.
Does simpledashboard.io have it's own broker ?
Jup - we have one, but it is not publicly available (yet). We are currently working on it to get them up, running and stable enough to provide it to our customers.

Upload & Preview

How can i see the status of my dashboard ?

To see the status of your dashboard you have to upload the original sourcefile again. The system recognizes it and redirects you to the status page. Every other attempt to access the status page will end with a "403-Forbidden" message or in a status page with no information on it.

Why can't i upload the file XYZ again ?

Somebody (most propably you) had already uploaded this dashboard in the near past. Since the preview period is already over we have stopped to update this dashboard - so it is locked now. You can reactivate it by purchasing a subscription.

What about security ?

Security is in the field of dashboarding a sensitive topic. To protect your data we are generating a unique dashboard-id every time you upload a new template. This id is not published anywhere. You are the only who knows this id - so it is completely up to you with whom you share your dashboard. Furthermore - The original dashboard template file acts like a key to the statuspage of the dashboard where you can alter settings.

What about privacy ?

We are stripping out every client information from the generated dashboards which reside in the title or in the description field. So you can share your dashboard with whomever you want - nobody will know where this data comes from.

Buy

Do i need to sign up anywhere to use this service ?

No - there is no need to create any kind of user account. You just need a vital paypal account to buy a subscription.

Is there another way to pay for this service except paypal ?

No - currently not. Maybe we will offer payments with coupons, bitcoins or other cryptocurrency in the future.

Embed

Are there any downtimes ?

We try to keep this service up and running 24/7. Updates are mostly done without service interruption. If we really need to reboot our machines then we are doing this on odd days between 22:00 and 23:00 UTC. However - even these interruptions should not take longer than a few minutes.

Portfolio


What our users have created

Industrial process

Industrial process

Industrial process overview of a cement dry process.

Instrument dashboard

Instrument dashboard

A simple instument dashboard that displays values of an arbitrary process.

Scoreboard

Scoreboard

Scoreboard of days without incidents within a company


What our customers say

Pricing - You pay what you need !

We have no fix pricing. The actual price depends on the number of brokers and the update interval of the images. It is regardless of how many topics you subscribe - as long as they are hosted on the same broker you pay the same price. The data can be inserted into the template as often as you want.

Just to give you a feeling - here are some examples:

Basic

1 broker

unlimited distinct topics

600 sec. update interval

Meshup

3 broker

unlimited distinct topics

120 sec. update interval

Speedy

1 broker

unlimited distinct topics

30 sec. update interval

However: The best way is to upload your template to the server. As result you will see a preview of the result and you will also get an offer. The preview will be visible for approx. 15 minutes. If you like the result then you buy it - otherwise try again.

CONTACT

Whether you have any questions or feedback, or whether they need a special offer - contact us! We will contact you as soon as possible.

Visit us at twitter

Visit us at facebook

HELP / ADDITIONAL RESSOURCES

Documentation

Videos on youtube Support chat at gitter

Imprint Disclaimer Privacy Statement Our public github repository

Click on one of the buttons above to get additional information which may help you to create your own dashboard or to get additional information about this service.