No idea where to start

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by stephan, Aug 10, 2011.

  1. stephan

    Thread Starter New Member

    Aug 10, 2011
    1
    0
    Hi,

    I am a web developer with only very limited knowledge about electronics so I need some help/advice from someone please.

    I need to build a small electronic device which can do the following things.

    1. connect to a wifi network
    2. each device should be able to be given a serial number
    3. get the direction the device is pointing to
    4. submit every second a request via the wifi network which will look like this:
    Code ( (Unknown Language)):
    1. http://10.115.0.243/recordData.php?serial=ydhkdjd&direction=90
    5. has a pressure sensor (only on or off) if on an additional request is sent that looks like this:
    Code ( (Unknown Language)):
    1. http://10.115.0.243/recordData.php?serial=ydhkdjd&direction=90&pressure=on
    6. has a on/off button
    7. has 2nd button that if this is pressed another request is sent that looks like
    Code ( (Unknown Language)):
    1. http://10.115.0.243/recordData.php?serial=ydhkdjd&direction=90&end=true
    8. is battery operated.

    Now the device should be as small as possible. Ideally the size of a laserpointer.

    Can anyone give me any advice??

    Thanks alot.
     
  2. iONic

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 16, 2007
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    Get down on both knees, bow your head, place the palm of your hands together and....well
    you can fill in the blanks.

    Did you say wirelessly?
     
  3. joeyd999

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jun 6, 2011
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    I am relatively new here on this forum, and I am not all that sure of the social order here, but why do you give such a flippant response? Almost everything he asked for is feasible. Not necessarily easy or quick, and there are obvious issues like battery size and life and wireless range. But, otherwise, what's so impossibly difficult as to deserve such a response?

    Stephen, I don't have an answer for you as WiFi is not part of my expertise, but you are essentially asking for a battery powered WiFi based sensor. Once the communication hardware and TCP connection is made, the content of the requests is trivial.

    I hope someone here can help you.
     
  4. joeyd999

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jun 6, 2011
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    Additionally, you could write an app for a wifi connected cell phone that would simulate what you are trying to do...obviously getting (static) direction would be difficult, as a phones GPS typically gives position only (or direction only after moving a certain distance).

    For the direction sensor, there are direction sensors that use the earths magnetic field to determine direction. Or, if the sensor is fixed in position and can use a mechanic reference, and optical encoder can provide direction information.
     
  5. iONic

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 16, 2007
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    joeyd999,

    You are quite right. I was a bit terse and pessimistic with respect to Stephan's request.

    Stephan, my apologies for the "fat chance" approach I presented to you. While I'm sure it is all possible, I do have doubts as to the size requirements. You will definitely need the aid of an experienced member with respect to wireless communications...etc., which is not myself. You may need also to frequent a programmers forum or two that may have experience in the internet communications realm.
     
  6. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 15, 2009
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    A google search for "wifi gps chip" will get you started. TI and broadcom both make some that might offer a good starting point. Read their datasheets/application documents. GPS will be required to indicate direction.
     
  7. joeyd999

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jun 6, 2011
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    Good call! I immediately found this:

    http://www.maximumpc.com/article/ne...troduces_chip_wifi_gps_bluetooth_and_fm_radio

    So he can add an FM radio to it as well.

    BTW...my guess is GPS won't work in his application, as directionality requires motion greater than 3 or 6 meters or round abouts.

    I was thinking something like this:

    http://www.sparkfun.com/products/7915
     
  8. Crispin

    Member

    Jul 4, 2011
    88
    2
    Take a look at Netduino, Fez Panda or Arduino. The first two use C# so you might be more familiar with that, the Arduino uses C. All versions have "shields", add-on cards which are wifi cards. All very simple to use and little electronics knowledge needed.

    As for the sensors, any of these would work as well: http://www.hobbytronics.co.uk/sensors/temp-pressure
    edit:
    as others have said, the compass modules are also there and simple to integrate
    /edit


    With very basic wiring from the sensor to the board (each varies so you'll have to shout for that).
    Lots of specific help available on the respective forums as well (not knocking the folks here!)
     
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