Re: BIABacus Pre-Release - Your First Impressions

Post #377 made 11 months ago
[EDIT: I've dealt with your actual question in the PS :)]

Hello Joel and great to hear from you :peace:!
All's well thanks - since last hearing from you, I'm definitely older, wiser :P and $50k poorer :angry:. I haven't lost my enthusiasm though ;).

Spent a lot of 2016 and early 2017 working full-time on the site. Had some solid help from Sarah and Mikey and a hell of a lot was achieved however bank account ran out about 9/10 months ago before anything could actually be implemented "on site". I'm only now just setting up for another big stint at everything.

What I Thought before the Last Big Stint

I thought the major challenge for turning the site into what I have envisioned would be developing a visually pleasing and intuitive design where the user would find themselves accessing the right info/components/tools for their needs. That's actually a very daunting task, a bit like desigining a mandala.

Mandala Design.gif

I thought that once the design was finalised, it would be pretty much just be writing the content (laying the grains) and, job done!

What I Learned from the Last Big Stint

A mandala is constructed indoors by a dedicated team of skilled monks with steady hands. Our tiny team of three had a lot more challenges; we had to work outdoors, in windy conditions (hundreds of IT challenges being thrown at us); one of the team could only do a day or so a week; we had far more innocence than skill (in IT stuff); and, with Sarah and I on the team, our hands were often unsteady!

Mandala Wind.jpg

The wind beat us - temporarily - sort of.

Before this Next Big Stint

Any spare time I've had over the last few months, I've spent on thinking on what we're really trying to do here.
Over the years, we've actually had many little teams of monks create wonderful mandalas.

Mandala Team.jpg

The end result of any mandala is that it is swept up, in a specific order and then "returned" to nature.

Mandala Dispersion.jpg

The work is not lost - it contributes to something much bigger.

From Mandalas to a Cathedral

[When starting to write this post, I didn't intend to write on mandalas and cathedrals :)
But, did you really want to hear about all the things that have gone on here? (Just today, I've spent on ftp, sftp, html, css, duplicate file finding on 2 1TB discs, "access denied" issues and a hundred other things as part of getting ready for the next big stint.)
I think mandalas and cathedrals are much more fun.]


Slowing down in that spare time over the last few months, has lead to me realising that we are building a cathedral here. I'm quite clear on that now. Once designed, building a cathedral is a bit of a job, but, it really boils down to the efficient collection and expulsion of members' passion/skills/resources.

That will be the initial focus of my personal next big stint and hopefully my last big stint*

:drink:
Pat

* PS: Joel, I would love to be able to just focus on the BIABacus. One of my major frustrations is having that brilliant tool being so daunting for the new user. I do Know how to solve that (and add heaps of other stuff) but I'd have to stop working on everything else. So...
It gets back to my last sentence two paras above - we need to solve that - it takes many coordinated hands to build a cathedral ;)
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Are you a "Goodwill Brewer?" Pay forward and Buy Some BIPs ;)

Re: BIABacus Pre-Release - Your First Impressions

Post #378 made 11 months ago
:thumbs: you and the team have done some great work Pat. Starting out 1.5 years ago straight into all grain biab with limited experience brewing with a neighbor 10 years prior. This site and the members have provided a wealth of knowledge for me and I've been able to make some great beers using the biabacus. I've moved into a 10g breweasy now (Wyoming winters are brutal) and I find the biabacus fits the brew profile perfect. Thanks for all the hard work. :thumbs: FYI, I'll still be doing Biab along with the BrewEasy
Brian aka wyoracer
Drink beer, ride bike, repeat til empty
    • SVA Brewer With Over 5 Brews From United States of America

Re: BIABacus Pre-Release - Your First Impressions

Post #379 made 11 months ago
Much appreciated Brian :peace:

If you enjoyed my last post, you can thank Microsoft. I've had a mind-numbing week dealing with re-installs etc. Lost a lot of time there so am about to throw up a new "skin" for you. Would have liked to have done a lot more testing first but c'est la vie.

New skin in about two hours.
Pat
Last edited by Pat on 17 Dec 2017, 23:23, edited 2 times in total.
Are you a "Goodwill Brewer?" Pay forward and Buy Some BIPs ;)

Re: BIABacus Pre-Release - Your First Impressions

Post #384 made 3 months ago
[mention]tim_n[/mention] : Great to hear from you Tim and thanks for your post. That is great to hear :thumbs:

[mention]shetc[/mention] : Thanks for that. On the next version, I'll try and add a formula that auto-updates that and a few other things as I always miss stuff like that. I have another version here where I've created some more tools but I've placed them along with the Unit Conversion sheet into a separate file as if all in one, the file size becomes quite large. I'm not sure on this change though and will request some feedback later from Gold Members to see what they reckon. I have to get quite a few articles written before I can get focus back to that unfortunately :smoke:
Are you a "Goodwill Brewer?" Pay forward and Buy Some BIPs ;)

Re: BIABacus Pre-Release - Your First Impressions

Post #388 made 2 weeks ago
First impression? Oh crap - a complicated looking spreadsheet!
Second impression? Maybe this won't be so bad but playing with it while at work is probably bad form :lol:
Third impression? Why have I not purchased excel for my mac! It could make my life so much easier probably

Thank you all for the hard work on it! I look forward to playing with it next brew day
    • SVA Brewer With Over 20 Brews From United States of America

Re: BIABacus Pre-Release - Your First Impressions

Post #391 made 4 days ago
@cuthburtb ,

The input on the left side of the screen shows recipe inputs for a recipe of a given size. Hopefully all that is correct. The What You Will Use to the right of that modifies the recipe for your system, and depending on your batch size will alter the inputs needed.

When I was brewing a same size batch it generally would show I can use less grain for the same gravity brew (compared to traditional 3-vessel all grain brewing). Nowadays I generally maximize batch size and go as large as I can and still, with me putting in a larger batch size it tells how much inputs I need of grain and hops at whatever times to match the recipe with my system.

Let me know if unclear.
    • SVA Brewer With Over 50 Brews From United States of America

Re: BIABacus Pre-Release - Your First Impressions

Post #392 made 4 days ago
Cuthburtb -
The recipe you entered in the left column could be the list of grain & hops weights from a source that brewed on a very different scale to what your kettle may permit. Also, the grains values might be entered as numbers reflecting percentages of the total grist (do not enter the % signs, just numbers). With your individual kettle dimensions and your desired OG entered, the spreadsheet will then display What You Will Use in the columns to the right. Those are the weights that you should employ in your BIAB batch. Watch out for possible red warnings that tell if your total mash volume approaches or exceeds your kettle capacity. You can and should check those two values, but the small red letters can be a help.
You need to enter the names of each grain only on the left side; leave the name blank (same row, different column) blank on the same line to the right. There is a way to tinker after you have built up experience. Same goes for hops, but your %AA should match what you bought on the right side. I find it rare that what I buy has the same AA% as on the left - even if it is a recipe I brewed before. Ask for the %AA or buy extra and weigh out what you need. You may have to read up on how to compensate for differences.
If you already purchased grains by weight according to another recipe source and they are crushed and mixed together, good luck. You can still brew it and get beer, but it could be better. If you play with volumes and target OG numbers you can get close, but it takes some guessing and time. Next batch, purchase from the What You Will Use columns.
Granted, it seems complicated but it will eventually all fall into place.
Last edited by ShorePoints on 13 Nov 2018, 07:32, edited 1 time in total.

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