Variables are designed to give you maximum flexibility in configuring your PHCA installation. There are a lot of options to set when configuring variables, but because of that, you do have a lot of flexibility.
To get started with editing and creating variables, just click on the “Edit Variables” button from the main configuration menu. You will then be presented with a list of variables that have already been configured. From there you can either select one of the current variables, or you can select “Add new variable” from the options menu.
The first setting is for the variable name. The name can consist of pretty much any character. I personally wouldn’t use anything other than the “usual” variable characters such as all letters, numbers, and the underscore, but you can probably get away with using spaces and other special characters. You cannot change a variable name once you create it, so the name will be grayed out (disabled) if you are editing an existing variable.
The next option is for the default color. Enter in the default color for this variable. I suggest that you stick with the normal colors as listed above the entry field. This color is the font color that will be used if there is not a specific color for the current value of the variable. For instance, the garage door is either open or closed. Say you have defined a specific color only for when the ~garagedoor~ variable is set to “open” (but not for when it is closed). When the garage door is closed, in this case since there isn’t a specific setting for the closed value, it will use the default color for the font.
The next option is for the default value. The text entered here will be shown when PHCA does not know the current value of the variable.
The Notification phase is used when an incoming C2DM push message updates the variable. You would see a notification such as “The garage door is open” in the notification area on your phone.
The current value is displayed for your viewing pleasure, but cannot be edited.
When you are done editing your variable’s settings, you can choose to enter specific setting for different values (such as “open” and “closed”), or you can just select “Save changes”.