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The Device Manager concept was created to have a digital representation of actions you can do in your surroundings. For example opening an automatic door would require you to push a button on the wall. This would have a button inside Girder's Device Manager as well. Also things like amplifiers or TV's. These all have buttons and sliders (think volume). These all translate to the Device Manager framework inside Girder. Inside Girder these can even be organized into locations. These could match for example the names of rooms in your house.
To get an overview of what you currently have defined open the device manager. View->Device Manager.
On the Device Manager interface you'll find all device currently defined grouped by component. The Component is the part that holds all it's devices. In the example above the "New PIR-1 Plugin component" is a component. Inside it you'll see the "PIR-1 / 64939313332351801071" device. It's currently not green, an indication it's not available. Last but not least each device will have controls. The controls are the actual parts that you'll interact with. In the example above the control is a "CCF control". This is an advanced control that allows you to send IR codes. Some of the other controls are visible below:
Toggle Button Control
These control types are assigned upon creation of the control.
Referencing Controls from Actions or Lua code
All elements in the Device Manager have unique id's internally. You can use these to reference the Controls. Alternatively you can reference Controls by their Path. The Path consists of three main parts. The location name, the device name and the control name. If the location is nested in another location you'll see all location names listed. These parts are separated by "///" three forward slashes. Make sure you don't use three forward slashes in names if you want to use Path names to reference Controls.
There are a few pro's and con's for using either method.
Id's don't change and are unique. So you can change the name of any part of the Control, Device or Location name and your reference by Id will continue to work as normal. However if you transfer to a new computer and recreate the Device Manager you'll find that the Ids have changed. (You could always copy the database from one computer to another to avoid this!)
Path references are nice since you can transfer these from one computer to another, as long as you kept the names the same things will continue to work.