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Why is the forum so dead?

Posted By dwalton 3 Years Ago
Posted Tuesday April 19 2016
I've been lurking for quite a while and finally got around to downloading a trial version of RE recently. I've read how RE support is slim at best but its such a powerful platform, I was hopeful. I got even more hopeful when I saw Andreas Clenow post articles on how to use RE and that Norgate is developing what looks to be a great data plugin. 

I see maybe a post a week on average in the forums and typically selective/no responses from the developers. Was I wrong to be hopeful that RE was gaining momentum?

If things are status quo, I'd recommend adding a question to the pinned "Some Common Questions" topic:

What kind of response time should I expect for questions posted in the forum?

Posted Wednesday April 20 2016
Yes, this forum isn't very active. That's actually one of the (few) problems with RightEdge. It's a great piece of software but it lacks active online discussion at the moment. Perhaps I could do something about that...

I was running a trading forum a few years ago (tradersplace) which was actually much more active in discussing RightEdge than this forum. I took it offline when I realized that I didn't have enough time for maintaining it, and it was getting overrun by spam bots. 

I would be happy to reinstate the site again, and restore the contents. I still have it all, and there's a lot of really useful discussions and code samples in there. My main issue is maintaining the tech side and avoiding the spam bots and hackers. I would have to migrate to a separate server, to avoid the risk of hackers getting to my more important sites, and I would need to find some trusted guys who understand the tech side to help maintain it. I'm not looking to make money off the site, so it would be a hobby project only.
Posted Wednesday April 20 2016
Hi Andreas, yep I remember (and emailed you) about tradersplace. It interesting to me that the actual product forum would be very inactive. In contrast, a forum like for tradingblox has the opposite problem.

So I'm curious your take on the other of the few problems with RE are?
Posted Wednesday April 20 2016
Mostly minor annoyances. 

* If a security suddenly stops existing (delisting etc), you'll be stuck in that position forever. Local workarounds needed to get around that issue.
* Inability to programatically save charts. (solved in build 56! wohoo!)
* Inability to add additional data fields, beyond the OHCLVO.
* The exceptions thrown at every minor data error... 
* Watchlists can make complex simulations a little tricky, for instance if you want to back test on actual futures contracts, throwing hundreds of individual contracts in there.

Well, I'm sure I can think of more of these things if I try. There are many small annoying things, but that's usually the case with any software. 

Posted Friday April 22 2016
Good points Andreas. I would stress that exceptions are thrown at every minor issues during live trading as well, which effectively leaves app in corrupted/unsync'd state all the time.
Posted Saturday April 23 2016
Well, I'm starting to see what you mean!!! I haven't tried live trading yet but I have hit some of the annoying exceptions due to data errors. So now I'm starting to see why RE isn't more popular. Its really not usable for non programmers given lack of documentation and quirks such as the "data error" exceptions. For me it is annoying to hit an exception and have to dig through the forums to see if someone has hit it and if there is a solution. For a non programmer, forget it. The sad thing is that the ones I've hit so far are so basic that there really should be built-in error recovery/assumptions to handle them. 

E.g. if your system operates on multiple symbols and not all symbols start on the same date, you'll get hit with a very non-descriptive exception if you inadvertently attempt to access data that hasn't started yet. Really? How about a warning and continue execution for the bar skipping the symbols without data? Almost all other platforms do something like that. Instead RE stops execution and makes you hunt the forums for a solution.

To have a more broadly usable and thus popular platform, this kind of thing should be fixed. I'll note that for me, its worth it to find workarounds to these annoyances because the flexibility and power of RE is more important. But I'm sure I'm in the minority of people.
Posted Saturday April 23 2016
To be fair, in the scenario you mention, I think it's absolutely correct to throw an exception. If you try to read 50 data points and there's only 1 available, you should get an exception. This is a fault in your coding, not in the platform. I wouldn't want the platform to do it any other way. It's easy to handle this of course. The error is in your code, and you need to build in error handling for it. Nothing different here than any other coding. This is not a RightEdge behavior, it's just how programming works. You need to put a try/catch in your code whenever there's a risk of something going wrong at runtime. In the example you mention, it's even easier. Just check how many datapoints you have first. It's a very predictable issue.

I see a larger problem in things like how the platform throws exceptions if there's a data point with open higher than high for instance. Nothing you can do about that at runtime. If a data provider sends you a faulty bar, your code blows up. We build our own solutions to handle this, by scrubbing data before it hits RightEdge.

Despite what I listed, I still see RE as one of the very best platforms. It's competing with the 5,000 - 10,000 kind of platforms, at a fraction of the price. It's far superior to anything else accessible to retail traders, as far as I've seen.

I believe that the reason for it not being more widespread is poor marketing. And I believe that the reason for the poor marketing is the far too low price. It's too underpriced and therefore not profitable enough for proper marketing and regular updates.
Posted Saturday April 23 2016
Andreas, from the perspective of purity you are absolutely correct- it is programming. It would be nice to have a more descriptive exception string though. And yes, the solution for my scenario was as easy as you said. However, my point was that to appeal broadly to retail traders (most of which are not expert programmers), basic out-of-the-box functionality needs to be there. I don't see how better marketing fixes that. But perhaps I'm wrong about the market.
Posted Tuesday April 26 2016
andreas_clenow (4/23/2016)

I see a larger problem in things like how the platform throws exceptions if there's a data point with open higher than high for instance. Nothing you can do about that at runtime. If a data provider sends you a faulty bar, your code blows up. We build our own solutions to handle this, by scrubbing data before it hits RightEdge.

Does Symbol Information > Ignore Bar Data Errors fix this for you?

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