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Old 03-11-2008, 02:26 PM   #1
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Default BTP 1.5 Beta is out now.

I don't know if it's "okay" to post this but Beertoolspro released their 1.5 beta software today:

What Makes BeerTools Pro 1.5 So Different?
The BTP interface has been significantly modified from its original form in order to provide access to the more commonly used tools and features without leaving the main window. The user experience is more efficient and more intuitive. Some of the changes:

New toolbar with buttons for managing recipe files, folders, and printing
New assets library for storing recipes, ingredients, equipment and other items just a mouse-click away
Contents list for displaying the contents of assets folders
New info panel for immediate access to recipe and ingredient specifics including detailed descriptions and analysis data
Fully drag-n-drop capable for moving ingredients in and out of recipes

What Else Is Different?
The interface has experienced numerous other improvements that make working with BTP easier than ever. One example is how 1.5 handles units of measure. BTP 1.0 combined a text field and a popup menu to store a value and its corresponding unit of measure. This was a very flexible way to handle units, but 1.5 greatly improves on it by eliminating the units popup menu. How are units entered now? One way is to type the unit abbreviation after the value. If the abbreviation is omitted the current unit is used. Additionally, unit conversions can be done even easier now. Simply right-click on the value and a menu with list all of the possible conversions appears. Converting the value is just a matter of selecting from the list! To match the power of the new method of unit conversion, we have implemented a few more enhancements:

Values can be edited directly in the ingredient, equipment, and other lists
The graphs next to fermentables and hops can be dragged to change their respective ingredient proportions
Many items have been removed from the interface because their functionality was replaced and their presence cluttered the layout

What New Features Are Included?
Ever since the introduction of BeerTools Pro, we have maintained a punch list of items that have continued to remain on the drawing board. We are happy to announce that we haved knocked a few things off the list:

Recipe management within BeerTools Pro
Inventory tracking, comparison and recipe deduction
New dilution tool
Demo version licenses


I haven't played around with it yet but it looks promising.

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Old 03-11-2008, 02:31 PM   #2
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I'll probably download it later today and play around with it.

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Old 03-11-2008, 02:33 PM   #3
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I'll be downloading it tonight...haven't participated in the forum with the requests/enhancement suggestions or anything but I am going to run the beta.

Edit: BTW, I think you have to be a member of the beta forum to download the release in beta....

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Old 03-12-2008, 03:47 PM   #4
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I'm looking at making the jump to AG this summer and have been playing with Beersmith because of the inventory feature. Anyone have a review of BTP 1.5 inventory structure and the transition to shopping lists?

I'm having fun messing with the hops that I have and making different recipes based on what I have on hand.

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Old 03-12-2008, 03:49 PM   #5
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I can't say much about it yet. I played with it for about five minutes yesterday.

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Old 03-12-2008, 04:07 PM   #6
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The inventory feature made it but there's something inherently wrong with it if you like to plan out multiple batches ahead of time before you brew any of them.

Think of it this way;

1. You populate all your supplies into the inventory list along with quanitities (BTP1.5 does this fine).

2. You craft a recipe. Maybe some items are in stock, others are not, either way. Also covered in 1.5.

3. You MIGHT craft another recipe to pull from stock.

Now, the issue I have comes in knowing which ingredients are already commited to a given recipe. The way it's built now, you open a recipe, go into the inventory/shopping list window and you can see how that recipe is affect the inventory. Ok, so now if you want to commit to brewing that recipe, you click "deduct from inventory". The problem is, this is irreversible. If you actually decide to nix this recipe indefinitely, the items don't go back into inventory. There's also no way to keep track of which recipes have been committed to the inventory (or I should say vice versa as well). It would be nice to be able to go into inventory and see how a given stock may already be divied up to various ON-DECK recipes. It's key to be able to uncommit items.

Am I being a little b!tch about this feature or does this make sense? I don't know how beersmith resolves this, if at all.

You can also sit in that inventory window and continue clicking "deduct from inventory" until you're empty.

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Old 03-12-2008, 04:10 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M
Am I being a little b!tch about this feature or does this make sense? I don't know how beersmith resolves this, if at all.

You can also sit in that inventory window and continue clicking "deduct from inventory" until you're empty.
From what little I've played with Beersmith, it seems to do the same thing with "deduct from inventory" when building out planned beers.

Excuse me while I go re-add most of my inventory.
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Old 03-12-2008, 04:20 PM   #8
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Maybe I'm just an EAC that expects brewing software to be intuitive and flexible. I guess homebrewers are supposed to plan a recipe, brew it, then plan another one and brew it...etc.

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Old 03-12-2008, 04:35 PM   #9
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Alright, I'll explain myself better and add more of an overall review while I'm at it otherwise I'll just seem to be complaining for the hell of it. Sorry for the big pictures but you'll see more detail this way. Some of the major improvements were the recipe browser on top and also the ability to adust ingredients and times with up/down arrows right in the ingredients list.

First, here's the new main window layout:



Now we see the new inventory/shopping list window here which is accessed up in the menu labeled "recipe". You can see the deduct button I'm talking about. This just kills the inventory in whatever increment is displayed as part of the recipe. Notice the 1st and 4th ingredient is NOT in stock and it tells me to buy it.



Next we see the schedule window which is where you set your brewing process up; i.e. the infusions, transfer, heating, etc. I haven't messed around with the heating portion yet but it's critical to use this for all grain.

The first comment I have on this is that it would be nice to be able to view this info as a pane on the main window without having to use a drop down to switch. You can see with my resolution, I have plenty of room for it. That said, I do like the ability to adjust volumes and temps right in the window. If you look at the 4th pic, you can see what happens when you double click on any of the steps; you get a details window. I set my batch infusion temps in there and then later tweaked them higher in the main window. It's nice.



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Old 03-12-2008, 04:40 PM   #10
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Oh, when you got to file-->print, here's what comes out:

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