For many of our use cases it will be important that it is easy for non-technical people to set things up. Having some kind of configuration wizard can help speed up the setup process even for the most skilled of us.
I think the ideal solution would allow for multiple configuration UI options. e.g. Command line/config file, local web UI, and centralized management. For example, any device with wifi can create a network and publish a configuration UI. See https://github.com/openenergymonitor/emonpi/tree/master/wifiAP for one implementation of this.
The same basic approach can be done over Bluetooth as well https://github.com/treehouses/remote
After networking is set up, then there could be options for sensor configuration, etc. or maybe that could all be handled in the cloud via a device management platform like https://thingsboard.io/ or FarmOS
I think the next step is to test out some of these options and document any missing requirements. This may not be in the critical path but I think it could really help streamline our other work.