Open Bluetooth Sensor/Controller Project

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by Joe_Limon, Jan 9, 2014.

  1. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    Hello, I would like to make a little introduction post, as well as see if I can drum up any interest in a project I am starting.

    Project Details:
    I want to create a set of bluetooth sensors and controllers that can record and output varying Voltages/resistances and Amperages. These sensors are to be connected to iOS/Android applications. Since the project will be open source, anyone can develop their own applications to use the hardware.

    I will be hosting a kickoff meeting for this project on January 9, 2014 at 11:00am PST via a google hangout. If you can't attend this meeting, feel free to send me a message/email and I can work out a time to meet with you.

    If you know somebody who might be interested in this project, be sure to pass the link along!

    In the meantime, I'm going to be perusing the forum reading similar posts.
     
  2. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 15, 2009
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    And what is the intended use of these sensors/controllers?
    There are hundreds of Bluetooth devices out there. What does yours do that others can't?
    Is there are specific market you are targeting.
     
  3. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    The goal is to create a set of hardware that all plays nicely together and to do it cheaply. If you want monitor several different sources, you need to spend money/time setting up a daq+sensors. If you want to monitor something that can't be directly accessed, you're forced to record the data for later, or buy expensive wireless daq kits. Further, if you want the ability to manipulate something, you need a daq that has an output, or to invest in some sort of other control system.

    Ideally, all that should be needed is a smart phone, a free app, and all you have to do are buy sensors/controls that work with it. Further, if the system is open source, you have the ability for others to innovate on the base set up by this project.
     
  4. blueroomelectronics

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jul 22, 2007
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    Bluetooth is very limited to how many connections it can support, usually 7. Try ZigBee instead (a cheap mesh network for serial devices). Want roll your own then read up on Microchips' MiWi.
     
  5. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    I was reading about ZigBee, and the biggest drawback to it, is that we would have to sell/manufacture something that can attach to your cell phone. With bluetooth all you need is the one piece of hardware and an app. If you need to boost the number of connections with bluetooth you could always manufacture nodes so the phone can control 7 local nodes which then can control 42 sensors/etc. These nodes do not need to be attached to the cell phone, and can clip onto or near by the other devices.
     
  6. THE_RB

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 11, 2008
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    Bluetooth's distance range is pretty poor.

    There are a lot of cheap RF chips now (nRF series etc) with better ranges and better data transfer rates.
     
  7. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    Yes, but can they hook up to smart phones without having to attach a dongle?
     
  8. THE_RB

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 11, 2008
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    Nope. I missed that requirement. My apologies. :)
     
  9. GetDeviceInfo

    Senior Member

    Jun 7, 2009
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    so, where is the portal to this project? I'm keenly interested as I need an interface to my gamecams.
     
  10. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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  11. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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  12. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    A concept render, more available in the google group.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2014
  13. GetDeviceInfo

    Senior Member

    Jun 7, 2009
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    I'd think there would be two distinct areas, the protocol and vender support. The rest, including any physical, power, etc, be left unbounded. A protocol could be had by adopting an existing one, which comes down then to vender support. The different mobile OS support bluetooth in different degrees. If the object is to use any mobile device, then common denominator must be found across all platforms.
     
  14. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    Correct me if I am wrong, but shouldn't we simply design around the bluetooth standard? If a phone vendor doesn't follow that standard then it should be outside the scope of this project.
     
  15. GetDeviceInfo

    Senior Member

    Jun 7, 2009
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    What Bluetooth standard is supported across the various platforms? What protocol would one target, as support for any particular varies dramatically.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2014
  16. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    I see what you mean, why can't we support all/most bluetooth standards? The device is modular, so it is easy to use fabricate and sell multiple relays.
     
  17. GetDeviceInfo

    Senior Member

    Jun 7, 2009
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    you could, but the concern is on the mobile device, more than the embedded.

    I'm wondering if WiFi wouldn't have more of a future?
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2014
  18. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    Wifi would enable people to stream data online, which opens up new opportunities.

    My biggest worries with wifi is how difficult it is to connect to a router. Along with situations where you don't have a wireless network. I.e. monitoring a vehicle.

    I think other wireless connection types would be best suited as stretch goals for this project. Keep flexibility in mind when desiging the product, then develop extra flexibility as demand dictates.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2014
  19. GetDeviceInfo

    Senior Member

    Jun 7, 2009
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    convinced myself, I'm heading over to the Wifi camp.
     
  20. Joe_Limon

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 9, 2014
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    What is the most efficient way to add bits of data to the beginning or end of a data stream?
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2014
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