SparkFun Forums 

Where electronics enthusiasts find answers.

For the discussion of Arduino related topics.
User avatar
By Selenaut
#113091
This is a VERY large if.
What if someone took the ethernet, tellymate, sd card, and joystick shields, hooked them up to an Arduino, and made a little 160 dollar mini-computer? That would be pretty awesome. I just came up with this idea today, browsing SparkFun and coming across the TellyMate.

It might require some extra wiring, but it would be pretty sweet. The only problem might be RAM....
User avatar
By Selenaut
#113093
Hmm... seems possible, none of the pins overlap. I may need to save up some cash for this. :D
By trialex
#113098
Problem is that a beagleboard blows that combo out of the water for a cheaper price. It's already got a full linux distro running on it. It outputs DVi video. It has 256megs of RAM. It runs at 720Mhz. It still has a few spare I/O pins
By skimask
#113101
Selenaut wrote:It might require some extra wiring, but it would be pretty sweet. The only problem might be RAM....
http://www.ramtron.com/products/nonvola ... erial.aspx
Solves all the ram problems in 3, maybe 4 pins, and a couple of power lines.

BTW - It's a great idea. I've had the same types of ideas myself (along with probably hundreds of other people)...
PIC processor, USB keyboard, WiFi chip, GPS chip, SD card, FRAM memory, small TFT LCD, Wii-Nunchuck interface, blah blah blah.
I think it all boils down to cost. You take all those pieces/parts listed above and you could easily come up with about a $200+ bill for all the pieces/parts and you still have to put them all together and then write a program to run them all.
But you get a million cool points for having built it yourself.

Or, just buy a $200 refurbished netbook, and lose 99% of all your previous cool points.

I ended up getting a netbook (sigh)... :cry:
User avatar
By Selenaut
#113223
Like I said, the entire thing if you already have the Arduino and stuff like that is $150 for the shields. That's all I need. So:

1. Cheaper
2. Programmable
3. More fun
4. More versatile
5. BETTER. :D
By skimask
#113240
Selenaut wrote:Like I said, the entire thing if you already have the Arduino and stuff like that is $150 for the shields. That's all I need. So:
1. Cheaper
2. Programmable
3. More fun
4. More versatile
5. BETTER. :D
1 - Possibly, but not nearly as integrated as any notebook out there.
2 - True, but only by using the "Selenaut Operating System" (SOS? :) )parameters.
3 - Absolutely
4 - Possibly, but limited to 'your' imagination and thoughts, whereas a netbook and a netbook OS (be it Windoze, Linux, etc) is limited to the world's imagination and thoughts.
5 - Depends. Define better?
Don't get me wrong..I'm not trying to talk you out of anything at all. You'd get one million cool points (maybe more!) when the project is completed, or at least working, 'cause when are things like this ever "Complete".
But think about the same scenario with a netbook and a fast USB I/O (either port type I/O or serial or whatever) and a bit of VC++ could do for you...and still have loads of options left over...
User avatar
By Selenaut
#113252
better and more versatile meaning that you could take it apart and make something else out of it, say, a black-and-white video game.
By cyberteque
#114326
I've had a similar idea, kind of "Tricorder", but not some dippy fan-boy replica from Star Trek!
So far I've assembled -
- Arduino Mega
- The "huge" 160x120 LCD display SparkFun sell, with the serial back pack
- A custom 3x5 keypad I designed and built
- A DS1307 RTC
- An MPL115A1 Barometer and temperature sensor
- An HMC6352 digital compass
- An EM-406 GPS module
- An XBee module
- 8 24LC256 serial EEPROMS
- A uM-FPU V3.1 floating point chip
- An MLX90614 Infra-red thermometer

I plan on adding sensors for relative humidity and all the gas sensors I can lay my hands on, maybe the Gieger counter module SparkFun sell as well.

That will be the main unit, I'll use that to log waypoints, altitude, do basic mapping and environmental monitoring.
With the example code from the Micromega site, I've been trying the local sunrise/sunset calculations as well as direction and distance calculations from GPS coordinates.

The XBee module will talk to the "satellite" units attached to mah dawgs walking harness', each satellite unit will have an EM-406 GPS module, an XBee module and maybe an HMC6352 digital compass.

The basic idea of the satellite units is so I can get an idea of where my hounds are and which direction they are heading/pointed when we get separated whilst bush walking.

I've been writing the code in a modular fashion, testing each section as I go.
So far it's coming along really well!
I've had a bit of a hiccup with the MPL115A1 Barometer, but I'm getting close to solving the problem of the unit reading low temperature and pressure. (fingers crossed)

This thing is damn near the same size as my eee net book and will probably end up weighing more, but it will be more rugged.
By skimask
#114450
cyberteque wrote:......
- 8 24LC256 serial EEPROMS
......
One FM25H20 from Ramtron = 8 x 32K serial eeproms.
They're a bit spendy, but if you send off for a couple of "samples", you'll get them for free.
SPI vs. I2C, use less power, faster access, smaller, and don't need power to retain data.
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