Seems like programming the decoders could be accomplished as follows:
1) Disconnect the 2-wire cable from the controller and attach a single decoder
2) Put the controller in “programming mode” via a command
3) Run a programming cycle:
– Program decoder to specified address using decoder’s programing command protocol
– Query decoder to confirm communication at programmed address
– Report status of programming operation – and perhaps bounce an attached solenoid with a “click code” for user feedback
4) Remove decoder from controller’s 2-wire port
5) Repeat with next decoder until done with programming
6) Reattach 2-wire cable to controller’s 2-wire connector
BTW, a little circuit with a LED (or small alphanumeric display) could be substituted for a solenoid at a specific decoder station to generate diagnostics messages fro end user troubleshooting.
Finally, seems like having a controller that accepts inputs from a commercial timer would not be as useful as a controller with a serial interface and command set that would enable attachment to a computer (raspberry pi or similar). Reducing wiring for a 6 or 12 zone timer versus a 48 zone system spread out over acres.