Need programmer.

Discussion in 'Embedded Systems and Microcontrollers' started by kiyoukan, Oct 25, 2010.

  1. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    Okay so after talking to over pms to a few members i have thrown together a very crude schematic.
    this schematic is just for show.
    I am very bad at designing a 2 layer board.
    I want to get all of the above components on the board and have it as small as possible.
    I dont mind smd.
    I would also like the board to use direct headers for the lcd, no wires just plug right onto the board.
    And the pots must be able to be accessed without having to remove the lcd for active adjustments.
    Again i need this board to be as small as possible.
    [​IMG]The from TEC part can be just a regular header or plug.
    Other than that i think i am close.
    i got the software almost ready (buying it)
    Basic schematic layout.
    programing. (might need some help doing the boot loader and coms. but most of it is covered.)
    If there is anything wrong or things i can answer please ask.
    Old info and request.
    Hello, My name is Aaron.
    (Sorry if this is in wrong section or against rules i read them and i did not see any thing against trying to hire some help.)
    I am looking to hire a programmer.
    Qualifications are as followed.
    1. Must be able to program a STM8S (more info here http://www.st.com/mcu/contentid-130-113-STM8S_DISCOVERY.html)
    2. Some sort of computer interfacing programing (VB c C# just needs to work.)
    3. Skype communication or phone.
    Now with the general qualifications out of the way lets get to the task at hand.
    What i need.
    Program and design the micro controller to act as a volt meter for 0-5v, send this data to the pc software and display on a HD44780 20x4 blue lcd screen.
    The micro controller part is very simple. i am going to use it to take a voltage reading from a sensor and have it displayed on both the computer screen and lcd.
    Now there are some special features needed besides just reading voltage.
    The sensor has a few problems that can be over come by software.
    First when the sensor is just started being used it needs a few second to warm up so the program needs to be able to ignore the first 5 seconds of input.
    When the sensor is also not sensing heat it take a while to drop back down to 0 so for this the programmer needs to be able to see the fact that the curve is drooping very fast and to auto show zero.
    While its reading the data its needs a few active displays.
    First is the current reading the next is the peak current reading and third is the average current reading.
    The pc software need this as well. But i would also like it to plot a graph.
    The pc software needs to graph this info and also be able to save it.
    I would like the software to be able to save the graph.
    Each graph can be saved to its own name.
    So every time you open up a graph you can read again and see the differences between the times its been done.
    This feature is so you can see degradation over time.
    That is the basic features. there might be more needed.
    I have knowledge in programing but its been a while, so instead of spending months on a project it would save me time by letting someone else do it.
    This is all for a LPM or a Laser Power Meter
    http://www.die4laser.com/D4Thing/D4Thing-lp4.jpg

    This is a picture of a similar one but we are looking to add a computer interface as well as add the talked about displays.
    The laser hits the sensor heat and generates a small current that goes to an opamp. The output from the opamp will go to the chip.

    This job will be a paid job and can have installment payments.

    Or it can also be a trade.
    As i make very high powered Blue lasers.
    These are not cheap nor are they made in china i have my own machine shop and they are produces from start to finish in house.
    They range in power from 250mw to 1.5w.
    These can light matches and burn threw cardboard. cigarettes. and skin
    These are not toys.
    http://i755.photobucket.com/albums/xx195/kiyoukan/445nm build/laserwhole.jpg

    Picture of laser in our laser show system.
    http://s755.photobucket.com/albums/xx195/kiyoukan/?action=view&current=LASERSHOW.mp4

    I will try to add more detail please ask as any questions.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2010
  2. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
    6,357
    718
    If I am reading this correctly, you need the uC to:

    1) Monitor/log voltage on a line(wire).
    2) Monitor/log current on same line. Do some math for current, peak, avg current.
    3) Monitor temperature.

    All of the above are to be echoed to a PC through USB or Serial, and the PC software needs to be written as well.

    What is your location?

    Is the hardware provided or is that part of the costs the programmer will incur?

    What OS will be running on the PC, and would USB or RS-232 serial comms be preferred?

    The only non-clear part is this:
     
  3. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    it does not need to monitor temp.
    The sensor we use is called a TEC or better known as a thermal electric cooler.
    And theres simple math behind how it generate voltage.
    one side get hot and the other cold. so if you set one side to a heat sink and the other get side is painted flat black and shine a laser on it, it generates a small current to which the opamp will correct and amplify to the right reading so for the power level.
    The problem with this sensor is that it can take a while for it to dissipate all of its heat.
    So even after you are done shining your laser on it, it can take another 30 seconds before the volt meter to read 0. so that is why in the programing when it starts to drop at a significant rate it will just set it to 0.
    I hope that clears it up.
    I have a connection to st micro so i can get any component from them for free.
    I can supply and ship all the things needed to test and construct one.
    The STM8S in the link has a built in usb programer onto it. it is a very nice invention. for 10$ you get a STM8S chip and a usb programmer. So i would like all communication to be usb. And it will be running on windows xp and vista and 7.
    My main concern is xp.
    My location is the Detroit area Michigan.
     
  4. guitarguy12387

    Active Member

    Apr 10, 2008
    359
    12
    Interesting project. I'm also located in Detroit. What company is this for, if you don't mind me asking? What kind of time deadline are you on for this project?
     
  5. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    The company has yet to open.
    It is due to open mid november.
    The dead line is within a few months.
    We would like to open with this product but its not needed.
    We have a version that works but it does not use any pc hookup.
    just a simple opamp circuit and dc panel meter, but we have been longing to add this.
    We had a version working on the arduino. very basic just a simple graph plotter with a number display.
    but the arduinos with usb are at the cheapest 28$ a unit where as these are under 10$.
    This is not a big company it is currently run by me and have a few people working on commission.
    I know what i am trying to due is not terribly hard just implementation of a few simple things. the stand alone part with the lcd is very simple i am sure that wont be a problem as that can be done in less than a day. The hardest part will be the saving of the graphs. but even still those are almost pre made things.
    If i had more time i would have posted some of the code from a trial. but i have gotten so busy with getting things ready that i just dont have the time to design this.
    If you want to call you meet up i am located in the 48331 area but can be found from south field to madison heights on a weekly basis.
    if you want to talk over skype or email its kiyoukan@gmail.com
    If you want to talk over the phone i can send that but only over email i dont want to post that public.
     
  6. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
    6,357
    718
    You may want to remove your email from the post, or add a REMOVEME or -spam- into the middle to mangle it a bit, otherwise you will be overwhelmed with spam in a short time.

    This project does seem interesting, I can't do it for cash, but others may be willing to. The Windows program requirement is the only 'hitch' I see with a few. The uC side is fairly straightforward though. Maybe define what the output of the uC should be (Maybe even use a PIC, at $2/pop + PCB). Then the software could change quite often since the input is a known constant, making it open for future development on different platforms.

    Would a different zero method on target temperature be ok? If I am guessing correctly, it is measuring output/efficiency with the TEC, so the temp needs to be continually known internal to the controller anyway, so whatever temperature it is at be called "Zero" at the instant the next measurement starts, rather than arbitrarily zeroing the temp.

    Some starving college student or somebody that wants to play with a laser may be up for this. I am mildly interested, but I'll wait for somebody younger and more eager to get in on the deal. Pretty Windows User Interface design stuff isn't exactly my cup of tea (and I'm a Microchip PIC snob :D).
     
  7. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    Meh i got a good spam filter gmail does a great job and its not my primary so its okay if it gets a bit threw.
    The whole tec part is simple and you dont have to worry about it. all the pic need to do is act as a volt meter.
    the opamp takes the small voltage and boost it to the correct and right levels. as all the chip need to do is measure the voltage and put it to a display with the active volts average volts and max volts. and then echo the active reading to the cpu and the cpu can do its own math to get the average and max.
    Is there a way to hack the usb just to let the chip send a simple number from 0.000 to 5.000
    I know there re tricks to do it but i have thought about using a pic or a atmega. and then trying something like this to keep price down.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/USB-2-0-RS232-S...347?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item414fb559f3
    There was a post online that theres a small chip in there that can be taken out and used to give communication.
    http://www.larsen-b.com/Article/370.html
    We have the sensor set via opamp not the chip. this allows us to get each unit perfect without having to adjust the program.
    So the chip sides should be very simple its just the communication part and doing it cheap.
     
  8. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    I have gotten somehelp.
    Now i have the pc software ready.
    http://laserpointerforums.com/f51/luminosity-data-logger-releases-updates-build-notes-49848.html
    Working out the rights but i have permision to use.
    Now i just need to make the board and decide one the chip to use.
    I want the cheapest way to have usb connection.
    The chip need enough pins for a lcd screen and act as a volt meter.
    I would like to try to find that kind of a chip from ST Microelectronics.
    But if i have to go with a different chip or pic i can.
    I want to keep cost down.
    That is why i am staying away from the arduinos. 30$ per chip is to much.
    Also if it would lower cost to use a normal chip and integrate this i would be willing to go that route
    http://www.larsen-b.com/Article/370.html
    I now have a set due date of november 14.
    So please if you can help please contact me.
    I have 1/2 the job done now i just need the last part.
     
  9. maxpower097

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2009
    795
    388
    You know you can make your own arduino's for almost nothing. Its just a standard Atmel chip with a bootloader on it. You can buy the proper chips and program the arduino loader on it for free. Wtih your due date I think its either Atmel or PIC. All the other chips your gonna be hunting datasheets and bugs most of your time. Atmel and PIC both have massive followings and are very easy to get help for. Plus most of your code is probably floating around the net just waiting to be assembled into a program.
     
  10. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    okay so lets say i go with my own self built atmel or pic.
    What is the cheapest way to go about getting pc connection.
    I know that some pics are usb compatible but i have never used them.
    I would love advice on the best chips. from both sides of the pic and arduino community.
     
  11. maxpower097

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2009
    795
    388
    What about going overkill? You can get a PIC32 starter kit with USB and a programmer on it. Then your only out $40 and you have USB, a top of the line chip, and programmer all in one. Also the PIC32 can work as a device, host, or OTG on the USB side. Especially if you have little embedded experience and lots of computer experience. This would make the language barrier not so tall. Then you could still buy the expansion board for extra's and a pinout. So then once you finish your program you can then just take that circuit you build on the starter kit and draw it out and make it.

    As far as the arduino heres what you would do. 1st go buy an arduino. Then make your sheilds you will need and write your code. Then look at your arduino board and remove all stuff your not using. Then you go buy a ATMEL 328. Program it with the arduino bootloader, then flash you new board the arduino program. and bamm your done. Only problem with using the arduino OS/bootloader is that all your code is public domain. So if you make anything with it, your supposed to post your source code. If its not a commercial application this shouldn't be a problem. Also look at the Basic Stamp 2, and the picaxe. These are basically like arduino's for PIC and Parallax. Arduino's, BS2, and PICAXE's, are very easy to program and designed for people in the hobby/student market. IF you didn't know a PICAXE is just like hte arduino. Its a pic chip a 3rd party wrote a OS or bootloader for so you can use much more simple code.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
  12. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    I need to keep cost down.
    Also i dont think the chip i need to be very high end it just needs to act as a Volt meter and echo its reading to the pc and lcd
    I dont need anymore.
    something like this.
    http://www.waitingforfriday.com/index.php/Building_a_PIC18F_USB_device
    Bare bones. from my count i only need about 7 pins for the lcd then 1 analog to act as the volt meter and then 2 for the usb. so a 14pin dip package would be the best.
    If i am counting right.
    But i am unsure if that above link will be able to.
     
  13. maxpower097

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2009
    795
    388
    You can get a PIC32 for like $4.

    Otherwise if you want to cut costs' at all costs'.... :) Go with the PIC18 and buy a board for it you can swap out chips with. Only a couple PIC18's support USB so you will most likely buy a generic PIC 18 board then buy the specific pic18 chip you want to use.
     
  14. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    okay so it looks like i can get the PIC18F2455 for about 4$ in orders of 25
    But i am looking for some development help.
    At this point i like the idea of using a pic.
    Now its just to the point picking the cheapest yet with good use one.
    Also need one with high resolution. seeing its going to be acting as a volt meter i would like it to be able to go from 0 to 5 with the smallest possible steps.

    And then programing it.
    I am looking to find a programmer to program the chip, and even design the layout of the board.
    the only thing besides connection to the lcd is an simple opamp with 2 pots for the gain and adjustment to an analog in pin to act as the volt meter.
    So if someone might be willing to design this i am would be very great full. And if it would cost money i do not mind going that way as well.
    As i am in over my head with work i need to find someone to pick up this project.
    the board can use smd components i would have no problem getting a reflow oven or investing any other money needed to make it.
    So if someone can design the board and program i can build and do testing.
    I d have a few programmers some are very old serial cable ones with a few resistors others are a bit nicer.
    I think i might need to start a new thread where i will try to draw out what i need in more detail.
    But if you can do the above i would love to hear from you.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
  15. blueroomelectronics

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jul 22, 2007
    1,758
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    Does your company have a website?
     
  16. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    Yes we do.
    But the one for this part of the company has yet to open.
    As we are just starting. november 15th is our opening date.
     
  17. maxpower097

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2009
    795
    388
    In that case I say the PicKit3 with Dev board for $60. This will give you a pic18 chip and good programmer to start with. Then once you start to make some strides with the pic18 go ahead and buy the proper pic18 you want and bread board it out. Or find a pic18 dev board with USB already on it. But you could get a lot of it done with just the PK3 and pic18 board that comes with it. And if you have an email ending in .edu you get 25% off.
     
  18. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    Okay so after talking to over pms to a few members i have thrown together a very crude schematic.
    this schematic is just for show.
    I am very bad at designing a 2 layer board.
    I want to get all of the above components on the board and have it as small as possible.
    I dont mind smd.
    I would also like the board to use direct headers for the lcd, no wires just plug right onto the board.
    And the pots must be able to be accessed without having to remove the lcd for active adjustments.
    Again i need this board to be as small as possible.
    [​IMG]The from TEC part can be just a regular header or plug.
    Other than that i think i am close.
    i got the software almost ready (buying it)
    Basic schematic layout.
    programing. (might need some help doing the boot loader and coms. but most of it is covered.)
    If there is anything wrong or things i can answer please ask.
     
  19. maxpower097

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2009
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    388
    You can still develop with DIP chips and breadboards then print out a prototype board with SMT chips. Then just solder one the SMT parts. You can do it but just order 4-5 of each chip and a couple spare PCB's. Also there are some SMT PCB proto boards on ebay you can cut to the size you want.
     
  20. kiyoukan

    Thread Starter Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    63
    0
    if i had more time i would make a real schematic and then etch my own board out.
    But i am very busy with the current work load.
    So if someone wants to design this that would be great. if you need some cash to help i dont mind paying.
    Also the only edit is i need one more switch added.
    I am looking for this to be done right. every time i design one i am told some traces are to small for signal or other things wrong. or some need to be wider. so i would much rather have a nice schematic and layout done by someone who knows all those fancy rules
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2010
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