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The Truth: NinjaTrader
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The Truth: NinjaTrader

  #161 (permalink)
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I just got my beta invite. This is a big help.

Thanks Dierk!

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  #162 (permalink)
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FBJS View Post
I believe that you are supposed to run each window with its own thread. It is correct that you cannot update a UI component from a thread that did not create it, but you could create multiple windows and spawn a thread for each one. I think that this might be an example:

WinForms with one thread per window? in .NET Windows Forms

Ok, I was talking about the system library. UI libraries in general have always been single-threaded. That is just the nature of the beast. Java does the same thing.

You were talking about multiple UI threads to feed into the system UI thread, and I was talking about a multithreaded system UI.

I was writing a trading application in 2006/2007 , and the windows port did not do well in terms of threading and the GUI compared to Linux, so we dropped the windows port.

Now if Ninja ran on Linux....

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  #163 (permalink)
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Does anyone know the history of NinjaTrader? I mean, why was the company founded -- where did it come from -- the major players, where are they from?

It has been suggested they are not traders themselves or have lost touch with what traders want. I would agree with at least part of that statement. But I am curious, most companies are formed from a group of people with industry experience that think they can do it better than the competition. What is the story with NT?

There is a lot of anger and frustration with NT, primarily from its more advanced users who know what the capabilities of the platform truly are and see them consistently and continually unrealized. It's been suggested that some of these users start their own platform. But I think what is stopping them, more than anything, is not money or resources but the realization that NT is already the closest thing out there to a really good power platform, but is just hugely missing the right focus and attention to detail.

How many engineers do you think NT employs full-time that work exclusively on NT source and no other projects? How many sales staff? How many tech support (ie level 1/2)? How many management? In most technology heavy companies, the focus is on R&D and engineering, I've seen ratios as high as 10:1 several times in my experience in the technology sector, meaning 10 times as many engineers as sales staff. A well engineered product sells itself.

It is all too easy to point the finger at management and say they have no clue what they are doing. In my past experience in the corporate world, I did my share of finger pointing and ended up trying to do everything myself. But in the real world, things don't work that way. Do you really think that Ray or Dierk, for example, don't wish for NT to be a superior product? Naturally they do. They just seem unable to do anything about it, from our perspective.

And that is the real problem, and unless you are going to take a job at NT and gain influence over these two people, or unless you are going to buy them out, you'll have to either live with their decisions, stop using NT, stop complaining about NT, or try to convince them that what you are saying is right.

Mike

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  #164 (permalink)
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Big Mike View Post
Does anyone know the history of NinjaTrader? I mean, why was the company founded -- where did it come from -- the major players, where are they from?

There is a very good summary on NT's website:

Futures Trading Platforms. NINJATRADER. Leading Edge Online Trading Platform.

The team:

Futures Trading Platforms. NINJATRADER. Company Profiles.


Quoting 
It has been suggested they are not traders themselves or have lost touch with what traders want. I would agree with at least part of that statement. But I am curious, most companies are formed from a group of people with industry experience that think they can do it better than the competition. What is the story with NT?

They obviously do have some trading experience, or they wouldn't be writing a piece of trading software. However, they also suffer from personal bias when it comes to features: if they don't personally think something is important (i.e. they can't see themselves using it in their own trading), then they don't bother to include it.

Case in point, the .5 second refresh rate for charts that was locked at that value and could not be changed in the initial beta version of NT. They had to be convinced that a lot of other traders needed a faster refresh rate before they changed it. It's a classic case of "I don't need that as a trader, so why would you need it?" attitude. Literally, a poll had to be started with multiple people commenting on it and saying that it was a critical feature before Ray relented and changed the refresh to go as low as .1 seconds. He waited DAYS to make that decision, and only after a hundred people had responded with fully 70% saying that it was a critical or very important issue to them. That is ridiculous, especially considering that this was a feature that already existed in 6.5. Taking that feature out in the first place showed a complete ignorance of certain short-term scalping styles and what some traders really need.



Quoting 
How many engineers do you think NT employs full-time that work exclusively on NT source and no other projects? How many sales staff? How many tech support (ie level 1/2)? How many management? In most technology heavy companies, the focus is on R&D and engineering, I've seen ratios as high as 10:1 several times in my experience in the technology sector, meaning 10 times as many engineers as sales staff. A well engineered product sells itself.

It is very obvious that NT is lightly staffed. This is shown by the fact that they have no phone support, and rely on the forums for all problem resolution. I actually don't have a problem with this if it allows the software to be cheaper - $999 for a lifetime license is pretty good in the industry, compared to some other solutions. So you can't totally fault them for having less staff, since they are not overcharging for their product. In my case, I would be willing to pay more for a product that was delivered on time, with less bugs, and with more helpful support... but I suspect that this isn't going to happen in any case, so there's no sense in complaining about it.


Quoting 
It is all too easy to point the finger at management and say they have no clue what they are doing. In my past experience in the corporate world, I did my share of finger pointing and ended up trying to do everything myself. But in the real world, things don't work that way. Do you really think that Ray or Dierk, for example, don't wish for NT to be a superior product? Naturally they do. They just seem unable to do anything about it, from our perspective.

There are two points with respect to this issue.

The first is the issue of being late and producing buggy code. I realize that they are understaffed, but when you are chronically missing dates by a very large margin, it is a sign of a bigger problem. If you are understaffed it is understandable that something should take longer to code, and I don't have a problem with that. I do have a problem with NT saying in 2008 that the beta would be here in early 2009, then 1st quarter 2009, then second quarter 2009, and then finally about a week before they were supposed to release the beta in July they said that it would be delayed by 3 more months. They should have been better at estimating how long something would take and keeping us informed. Granted, they are better at that now, but that's only because we ripped their heads off in June of last year after they pulled that stunt with another 3 month delay. It was only after we yelled and screamed at them that they started their blog with status updates, and were more communicative. It is good that they are doing it now, but the fact that we had to yell at them at all shows that they are not really the brightest people when it comes to handling customer relations. I do understand that they are understaffed, but when you are missing dates by a year or more, you probably need to find a way to work around that somehow. One suggestion for example would have been to scale back the feature list and get something out the door sooner, and then work on iterative updates with new features later on.

The second issue has nothing to do with understaffing, and everything to do with arrogance. Currently the time and sales ticker is locked at 250 ms refresh. Multiple people have complained about this on their forums and said that this cripples the T&S window for tape readers, and that they need to enable an option to change it to refresh on every tick. NT has studiously ignored these requests and not responded to them, and it seems as though they have no intention of changing it. This is an issue that affects certain traders to a great degree, claws back a feature that was available in 6.5, and would cost them about 5 minutes of time to implement without affecting performance for any other traders. Despite this, and despite the fact that multiple people have complained about it, it is not resolved and likely will not be changed. I myself have to use a hacked indicator on a chart to display T&S data refreshing on every tick, but I shouldn't have to. The same arrogant attitude has been displayed with the chart refresh issue, with templates, and with some other things. We shouldn't have to beat them over the head and threaten them to get them to listen to customer concerns, especially when a number of people are requesting the same thing.


Quoting 
And that is the real problem, and unless you are going to take a job at NT and gain influence over these two people, or unless you are going to buy them out, you'll have to either live with their decisions, stop using NT, stop complaining about NT, or try to convince them that what you are saying is right.

Mike

As I said, I have found my workarounds, so their issues affect me less and less. I have accepted that this is sub-par software, and that you get what you pay for. There's only so much complaining that you can really do when something only costs $1000 for a lifetime license. It does have some nice features that I use including custom indicators that I find very helpful, and I have worked my way around most of its problems. Personally at this point I wish they would just work on stability more than anything else...

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  #165 (permalink)
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Do you have a link for that hacked Time and Sales indicator you mentioned?

One thing I like a lot about ninjatrader is the fact that their architecture allows coders to fix/customize things on their own without waiting for Ninja staff.

My only real major complaint is the out of order bid/ask data which makes it hard to do reliable backtesting and optimization. They've stated that the solution to this is a sequencer to record the sequence of each tick, and that this is too big of a project to add into the NT7 release schedule, which is understandable.

I wish they would release documentation for their database and replay files, so coders could fix these issues themselves, but maybe there is more involved with releasing this information than I am aware of.


NickA View Post
One major problem is that the resolution of the time stamp of the bid ask data is 1 second and there is no sequencing information across bid ask and last. This means you can not guarantee to get these ticks back in the same sequence as they occurred in real time. I think this was mentioned earlier in the thread but essentially it makes the bid & ask database pretty much worthless.

There is a thread BidAsk Historical... - NinjaTrader Support Forum here about it. Perhaps if people politely add there support to having this fixed sooner rather than later it may get the problem moved up the list.

Edit: Just got an email that beta 9 is released.


FBJS View Post
There is a very good summary on NT's website:

Futures Trading Platforms. NINJATRADER. Leading Edge Online Trading Platform.

The team:

Futures Trading Platforms. NINJATRADER. Company Profiles.



They obviously do have some trading experience, or they wouldn't be writing a piece of trading software. However, they also suffer from personal bias when it comes to features: if they don't personally think something is important (i.e. they can't see themselves using it in their own trading), then they don't bother to include it.

Case in point, the .5 second refresh rate for charts that was locked at that value and could not be changed in the initial beta version of NT. They had to be convinced that a lot of other traders needed a faster refresh rate before they changed it. It's a classic case of "I don't need that as a trader, so why would you need it?" attitude. Literally, a poll had to be started with multiple people commenting on it and saying that it was a critical feature before Ray relented and changed the refresh to go as low as .1 seconds. He waited DAYS to make that decision, and only after a hundred people had responded with fully 70% saying that it was a critical or very important issue to them. That is ridiculous, especially considering that this was a feature that already existed in 6.5. Taking that feature out in the first place showed a complete ignorance of certain short-term scalping styles and what some traders really need.




It is very obvious that NT is lightly staffed. This is shown by the fact that they have no phone support, and rely on the forums for all problem resolution. I actually don't have a problem with this if it allows the software to be cheaper - $999 for a lifetime license is pretty good in the industry, compared to some other solutions. So you can't totally fault them for having less staff, since they are not overcharging for their product. In my case, I would be willing to pay more for a product that was delivered on time, with less bugs, and with more helpful support... but I suspect that this isn't going to happen in any case, so there's no sense in complaining about it.



There are two points with respect to this issue.

The first is the issue of being late and producing buggy code. I realize that they are understaffed, but when you are chronically missing dates by a very large margin, it is a sign of a bigger problem. If you are understaffed it is understandable that something should take longer to code, and I don't have a problem with that. I do have a problem with NT saying in 2008 that the beta would be here in early 2009, then 1st quarter 2009, then second quarter 2009, and then finally about a week before they were supposed to release the beta in July they said that it would be delayed by 3 more months. They should have been better at estimating how long something would take and keeping us informed. Granted, they are better at that now, but that's only because we ripped their heads off in June of last year after they pulled that stunt with another 3 month delay. It was only after we yelled and screamed at them that they started their blog with status updates, and were more communicative. It is good that they are doing it now, but the fact that we had to yell at them at all shows that they are not really the brightest people when it comes to handling customer relations. I do understand that they are understaffed, but when you are missing dates by a year or more, you probably need to find a way to work around that somehow. One suggestion for example would have been to scale back the feature list and get something out the door sooner, and then work on iterative updates with new features later on.

The second issue has nothing to do with understaffing, and everything to do with arrogance. Currently the time and sales ticker is locked at 250 ms refresh. Multiple people have complained about this on their forums and said that this cripples the T&S window for tape readers, and that they need to enable an option to change it to refresh on every tick. NT has studiously ignored these requests and not responded to them, and it seems as though they have no intention of changing it. This is an issue that affects certain traders to a great degree, claws back a feature that was available in 6.5, and would cost them about 5 minutes of time to implement without affecting performance for any other traders. Despite this, and despite the fact that multiple people have complained about it, it is not resolved and likely will not be changed. I myself have to use a hacked indicator on a chart to display T&S data refreshing on every tick, but I shouldn't have to. The same arrogant attitude has been displayed with the chart refresh issue, with templates, and with some other things. We shouldn't have to beat them over the head and threaten them to get them to listen to customer concerns, especially when a number of people are requesting the same thing.



As I said, I have found my workarounds, so their issues affect me less and less. I have accepted that this is sub-par software, and that you get what you pay for. There's only so much complaining that you can really do when something only costs $1000 for a lifetime license. It does have some nice features that I use including custom indicators that I find very helpful, and I have worked my way around most of its problems. Personally at this point I wish they would just work on stability more than anything else...


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  #166 (permalink)
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GoldStandard View Post
My only real major complaint is the out of order bid/ask data which makes it hard to do reliable backtesting and optimization. They've stated that the solution to this is a sequencer to record the sequence of each tick, and that this is too big of a project to add into the NT7 release schedule, which is understandable.

If gomi can do it, why can't NT? In fact, why can't NT simply approach Gomi and use his approach? I'm nearly positive he would welcome it.

Mike

Due to time constraints, please do not PM me if your question can be resolved or answered on the forum.

Need help?
1) Stop changing things. No new indicators, charts, or methods. Be consistent with what is in front of you first.
2) Start a journal and post to it daily with the trades you made to show your strengths and weaknesses.
3) Set goals for yourself to reach daily. Make them about how you trade, not how much money you make.
4) Accept responsibility for your actions. Stop looking elsewhere to explain away poor performance.
5) Where to start as a trader? Watch this webinar and read this thread for hundreds of questions and answers.
6)
Help using the forum? Watch this video to learn general tips on using the site.

If you want
to support our community, become an Elite Member.

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  #167 (permalink)
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GoldStandard View Post
Do you have a link for that hacked Time and Sales indicator you mentioned?

You find it here:

NinjaTrader Support Forum - View Single Post - ZenFire Time & Sales Missing Ticks??

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  #168 (permalink)
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experience with NT

I do know a few things from my experience (over several years using NT off and on):

When data is coming at NT in heavy volume dom slows/freezes and trade only shows on the ladder after a 3-4 tick jump.

Dom periodically erratic. Brackets disappear, etc. Forget trading multiple products.

I've compared NT to T&S on X-trader and it often lags.

NT seems more useful for charting and indicators and i think it was developed as a front end.

TT still has a better product as far as execution, especially for scalper but I would like to see a front end that is not a charting service and can cut execution time in half. T&S is okay, but you can learn to read the "book," and use levels.

I think that you are asking for trouble if you have a boat load of charts and indicators running at the same time with NT.

I've watched former floor traders with screens filled with TT and no Charts. I have a second pc and broker on a different machine and alternate feed for charts.

One of the best clues to entries is at major levels and pullbacks in breakouts. As soon at the tradeflow is spent, watch for reversal. Asks are filled or pulled and the bid is lifted and vice versa for shorts. Strategy is the hard part.

Good luck.

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  #169 (permalink)
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X_Trader and TT

My experience has been that X_Trader is rock solid reliable for executions, and has super responsive ultra fast updating DOM and T&S. It NEVER crashes. So I use X_Trader for executing and Ninjatrader for charting.

The X_Trader charts are very rudimentary, and there is no way I know of to program custom indicators. The charts do support persistent bid ask volume data.

The TT data feed does seem to work well with Ninja. Does anyone know if it is filtered, and how it otherwise compares to Zen-Fire?

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  #170 (permalink)
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aslan View Post

Also, if you watch the forums, there are a couple of key features like correct ordering of historical bid/ask/last that they should fix, but they are very resistant to because they know it would blow them out of the water due to their lack of any real development process.

I really think with enough user pressure they might tackle this. If it gets to release ......well I don't think we will see it until NT8 in 3 to 5 years time. Post your support for this change!

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