Overall impression
Author: mikesblack
Creation Date: 8/14/2009 10:29 PM
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mikesblack

#1
For the past many weeks I've been using WL for my back testing and analysis. There are many aspects to this program that make it extremely valuable, namely portfolio testing. That said there are some elements that have limited my ability to advance my analysis.

There are a number of items that I believe may enhance the usability for clients like me who know nothing about programing but still want to take advantage of the rule based design. There are some basic operators missing such as math and logic operations for creating or changing indicators and data.

There needs to be a more comprehensive ordering facility. Trailing orders such as sell at yesterday's low stop should be available.

There needs the facility of using outside data for pair trading or system design. Piloting two or more symbols on a chart. The ability to create one's own indicators. All this, but not from programing code.

Seems from my experience basic questions related to some of these issues are met with a bit of frustration and or impatience. It seems one must be programing savvy here. The Fidelity customers, perhaps some of them perhaps present a challenge to the time constraints of the developers. I think clients ,and developers would be best served if the program was developed further to include a greater range of functionality by wizards or some easy or more intuitive language, e.g. easy language or easy editor ( Trade Station). This would make the experience more intuitive and ultimately free up time for developers that may deal with other issues than programing individual systems for clients.

At the end of the day developers,clients and Fidelity are better served.

No one wants to feel frustrated by wasting time on figuring out basic functions. Clients don't enjoy snarky responses from frustrated developers trying to answer to these clients needs. I most certainly don't.
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Eugene

#2
The rule-based wizard has its limitations.

Maybe if you knock hard enough, Fidelity considers including some of your suggestions which indeed sound reasonable. However, we have said many times and even put that on the FAQ: there's no need to become a programming guru to master WealthScript - it's not that hard. C# (and Visual Basic) is probably the "Easy Editor" in the world of programming languages. We've summed up some shortcuts here:

How do I start with C# ?
I'm a Wealth-Lab 3/4 user, how to learn C# ?

Sure, there's some learning curve but your requests to Fidelity are hardly going to happen tomorrow. This is a win/win scenario if you could transform your energy by recognizing the design limitations and taking a step further.
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Cone

#3
I'll just add that Wealth-Lab has always been somewhat of a boutique TA app for programmers; For example, years ago when I was looking for a TA app, I couldn't understand Easy Language, but I "got" Wealth-Lab immediately. Maybe not the majority, but there are many who'll agree with me. Nonetheless, the wizards are making strides, and there will be more capability in 5.6.

I'll also echo what Eugene says about talking with Fidelity phone reps. The discussions on this forum serve a limited purpose for enhancing the design of the main app. We, MS123, a third party, support the app as Fidelity has designed it, and, we make tremendous efforts providing solutions that can be "added in". (Just look at all the work Eugene has done with the Visualizers, not to mention the day-to-day Strategy solutions. And just to dangle a carrot, a major new Visualizer will be added later this year.)

Anyway, for users like you, who want to create advanced solutions and the Strategy Builder just doesn't cut it, take it as far as it can go and then start working with the code. We can help at that point, and you'll see that it's just as easy to perform operations in Wealth-Lab as in any other app.
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mikesblack

#4

."Maybe if you knock hard enough, Fidelity considers including some of your suggestions which indeed sound reasonable."

How are things organized? Does Fidelity have final say on functionality and design? Do I bring up my request with them or do you suggest changes in development and they make approvals for system design changes? If Fidelity believed my requests are reasonable, like you, would designing such an expanded "rule based wizard" be a daunting task.

For me learning C# is a daunting task, but I think I played hooky during computer lab in school;). Besides, I'm sure I'm not the only one that struggles with it. I do it mentioned on the trader's chat forums, so I know I'm not alone.

Perhaps my requests may seem reasonable if there were enough clients like me who would care for such functionality. I would like to continue working with Wealth Lab as for the amount of time I have spent becoming familiar with it so far and for the community that make up these forums. I guess if the demand isn't there then the product won't evolve in that way. I'm sure things will work out how it will.

Thanks for your response.




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mikesblack

#5
Cone and Eugene- I appreciate the efforts you make to keep the product up and for working with multiple clients with various levels of expertise and needs. I realize some demands can be more time consuming than your capacity to deal with and hand holding on basics a drag on your productivity.

So let me ask you: If Fidelity designs the program, then is there some way to make suggestions directly through them. I'm confused here.

MS123 a third party? I'm under the assumption both Cone and Eugene, you are perhaps the founders and original owners? I'm not sure of the arrangements with Fidelity or your roles each party plays. It seems you guys are the main interface with the general public. So beside putting in the sweat into keeping up the product also have to deal with guys like me. ( Tough job indeed ;))

Cone says:"The discussions on this forum serve a limited purpose for enhancing the design of the main app."

Yet this forum's subscript:
("Discuss features of Wealth-Lab Pro and Developer. Let us know what you want to make this your ultimate trading system development tool!")

So what is the most efficient means for customer feedback if then this forum has limited purpose as you say?
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C+ and the beginning programmer.

I have looked at many of the links to the online tutorials for C# to get the a handle on the basics. ( Haven' t looked at any of the generic books though.) It seems I get lost for the fact the examples are out of context with this program. The current programing guide doesn't seem to get to the basics.

What would be very helpful is a guide that is designed to address "the basic knowledge of such language concepts as: language syntax, data types, operators and statements, loops, classes, Date/Time and String classes", but in the context of this program. The basic C# guides are from first glance too abstract to make good use of. I'm sure others may not have this problem, but I do.

I'll illustrate my thinking process in the below example. These are not specific question for you, but rather just intended to provide you with a general idea of where I'm ( perhaps others) are coming from. I realize I may seem daft from this example, but so be it. I think it may be helpful to you to know what the beginner may thinking be in order to assist you in relating at his or her level.
Example---
1. What do the colors mean?
CODE:
Please log in to see this code.
5. How many } do I need. What??

--
Also:
.Curious, what % of clients on this forum are fidelity customers?

.I see there are many add ins for developer( All the labs Neuro, Index, Monti Carlo..)I don't see them advertised or available here. Is that so, and if not is it in the cards?


Hope my feedback is of some value to you. I'm really not intending to belly ache here or create an argument for argument's sake.

Feel free to contact me if you would like to discuss this further. I believe my contact info is available from my profile.

Thanks,
Mike
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Cone

#6
QUOTE:
If Fidelity designs the program, then is there some way to make suggestions directly through them
If you're a Fidelity customer, call Fidelity support. Suggestions are reviewed for consideration to implement in future builds. (Chances are improved if your idea is a popular one.)

QUOTE:
MS123 a third party?
Yes. We support Wealth-Lab products and re-package and re-sell Wealth-Lab "Developer" to non-U.S. customers under license by Fidelity.

QUOTE:
I'm under the assumption both Cone and Eugene, you are perhaps the founders and original owners?
No, neither.

QUOTE:
Yet this forum's subscript:
Good point. Discussions are certainly welcomed and we can certainly enhance the product greatly with data adapters, visualizers, strategy solutions, indicator libraries, commission structures, etc., etc., but what we can directly influence ends with add ons.

QUOTE:
% of clients on this forum are fidelity customers
No way to tell.

QUOTE:
many add ins for developer
Answered in this FAQ.

Re: C#
See Eugene's links in his response above.