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Automotive connectivity
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TheMan



Joined: 10 Sep 2007
Posts: 19
Location: SLC, Utah

Post Automotive connectivity Reply with quote
Again, I'm not sure if this is already slated for the project, but that's because I'm illiterate. The idea I have (and will incorporate into my own system) is one of integrating one's vehicle into the HA solution. The idea I have for this are:

- Detecting when and which vehicles enter/leave the perimeter
- Downloading OBDII data from the vehicle
- Syncing up in-vehicle PC's (whatever needs to be sync'd)
- (there are more, but my over-caffeination has removed them from memory, I'll add them later)

[/list]

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Humanzee



Joined: 22 Aug 2007
Posts: 519
Location: Seattle, WA

Post Re: Automotive connectivity Reply with quote
A lot of this can already be done.
TheMan wrote:
- Detecting when and which vehicles enter/leave the perimeter

Vaughn uses a DS10a hooked into a switch that detects when his park lever is in park, or hand break is pulled. This would let the automation know when your vehicle was on premesis.
TheMan wrote:
- Syncing up in-vehicle PC's (whatever needs to be sync'd)

If you have a pc in your auto you could easily add WiFi and keep the info you want sync'd in a shared folder. There are imminent plans to support command line input and output in vCrib, so you could use the event of your hand brake activating in the above to launch a process on the server to sync your folders. I use SyncToy from Microsoft. Its free, and can respond to command lines. Else you could write somethign to check your DHCP lease pool on your router to see when a specific device is connected and then spawn sync etc.
TheMan wrote:
- Downloading OBDII data from the vehicle
Again if you have an auto pc this data presumably is already at your fingertips, It could be synced via the above.

In stead of a car pc I have a hard drive /wifi access point that I used for a while to store all my music. I would connect to it via wifi from my pda phone and play music into my stereo via Bluetooth A2DP. I also got a timer circuit and a dedicated power supply for the car so that I could keep the hard drive on for 15 minutes etc after turning the car off, enough time to sync anything. The problem was that I couldn't get the access point to merge networks and connect to my home wifi to sync, I needed a laptop with two WiFi cards to make a network bridge. Plus it took a while to connect and would sometimes flake out when driving near other WiFi hot spots. So I just got a bigger media card for my phone. I might set it all up again but haven't had time. It was good on a cross the usa road trip I went on back a few years though.

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Thu Jan 17, 2008 2:48 pm View user's profile Send private message
TheMan



Joined: 10 Sep 2007
Posts: 19
Location: SLC, Utah

Post Reply with quote
Hey, that's why I started it with "dunno", but as far as Car PC's go, I do, actually, have a full-fledged PC going into my truck. I'm talking an AMD dual core 2ghz proc, 2GB RAM, 120GB of 2.5" HD, HD tuner, 802.11, bluetooth, EVDO internet access, cameras, Vista Ultimate and a 15" 3M Touchscreen. The only trick now is to convince the engine to start (I have to replace it due to a blown head gasket).

Anyhow, that's my geek-horn-blowing aside... Gotta fix my database.

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d_sellers1



Joined: 09 Sep 2007
Posts: 36
Location: Elgin, TX

Post Reply with quote
A CarPC was going to be what I was going to recommend when I first read this thread. By the looks of things, you've already got the hard stuff set up. I'm sure you could make some macros or something that can import the data from your truck. I'd be interested in the HomeAutomation to CarPC aspect in things. I was working on putting one in one of my cars but the brakes have gone out on that car so I haven't been investing much time in to it. Hardware-wise, I already have everything I need so maybe I might work on it a little more. More and more projects keep piling up on each other...

Derek
Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:31 pm View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website Yahoo Messenger
TheMan



Joined: 10 Sep 2007
Posts: 19
Location: SLC, Utah

Post Reply with quote
Quote:
A CarPC was going to be what I was going to recommend when I first read this thread. By the looks of things, you've already got the hard stuff set up. I'm sure you could make some macros or something that can import the data from your truck. I'd be interested in the HomeAutomation to CarPC aspect in things. I was working on putting one in one of my cars but the brakes have gone out on that car so I haven't been investing much time in to it. Hardware-wise, I already have everything I need so maybe I might work on it a little more. More and more projects keep piling up on each other...


Macros? No my dear, I am a developer. If this were a t-shirt, it would read "Developers do it custom, every time!" Of course I'm also considered an experienced systems guy so I'm not going to roll my own database, OS or any other major component that fits my needs.

The CarPC that I'm putting into my truck will be the entertainment system (radio, mp3's, dvd, cd, movies, etc), have control of the environment (Heat/AC/fan, vents, windows, heated seats), have bluetooth/802.11/EVDO for phone/PAN/wireless connectivity, interconnection with the ECU (computer that runs the truck), cameras for many purposes, and many, many other things.

One thing that I'm envisioning is a magement module for vcrib, or a separate component that integrates with it, which is designed to be a "life manager". Something that monitors as much as it can and attempts to predict upcoming events. The piece that comes into play here is taking the data from the vehicle (all OBD II readings since the last time it was updated) and charting out a set of events. Let's say that the user just put 300 miles on the vehicle and the OBD II data shows that the engine is running rich and gas mileage has decreased inordinately. The "Life Manager" would add this to the data it already has (mileage, oil life, tire life, all previous OBD II Data, vehicle make/model, etc), do some data mining then use the outcome to prepare a calendar like this:
- The oil needs to be changed in 2 days
- Tires need to be rotated in 12 days / replaced in 16 weeks
- The oxygen sensor needs to be replaced/checked/cleaned immediately
- Tire pressure should be checked (possible gas mileage decrease due to under-inflated tires)

And, based on the user's configuration, maybe the user likes to do all of this him/herself and, for parts like these, prefers to order from CSKAuto.com (checker, schucks, kragen). The user may pre-autorize the Life Manager to order the oil, oil filter and oxygen sensor to be picked up from the CSKAuto.com web site and prepare to order the tires in 14 weeks while leaving the order in workflow for the user to authorize. All of these calendar events would then be populated in the users calendar of choice (outlook, or whatever everyone else uses) with reminders.

Of course this is just a very specific set of events. The main purpose of the life manager would be to maintain the users' lives. Scheduled events like:
- Change the furnace air filter every 1-3 months depending on which filter they use
- Change the smoke alarm batteries every 6 months
- possibly keep a wireless bar code scanner in the kitchen so that when groceries are bought and discarded the computer can prepare a shopping list (https://www.groqit.com/faqs/general.php#what_is_groqit)
- Reminders for birthdays, anniversaries and other mundane things that we already do
- Keep copies of receipts and manuals stored and categorized for when they are needed (warranties, taxes, repairs, etc)
- And many other things that I'm overlooking right now.

And if this is already in the plan, well, byte me! Razz

Once I have made some more progress on getting the PC into my truck, I will make some entries about it on my site along with lots of details and pictures. I am writing an application which I call "CarPC" (derived from my vast creative experience) which does all of the things list above except the Life Manager portion, but I will begin that also. The CarPC app will take some time to completely finish as it also has a 3D piece for lots of the control functions and I have some other, more interesting (read don't drive behind my truck), features. One of which is a paintball sentry, similar to Vaughn's airsoft sentry, that will be on a turret that has 3 axes of freedom (x,y,z) so that it can hide under the sides of the bed and raise up when needed... My coworkers are already a little leary about this idea. But I did just buy a 2HP Jet Mill so that I can fashion the entire thing out of aluminum.

"Mad scientist at work"

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Humanzee



Joined: 22 Aug 2007
Posts: 519
Location: Seattle, WA

Post Reply with quote
Careful in some states, air rifles and paint ball guns are considered "Deadly Weapons". Discharging anything from a moving vehicle on a public road can be a crime. No oil slicks or buckets of nails etc. Ignorance of the law is no defense. I don't know if there is any case law on armed robotic sentries even for in home defense but I imagine you don't want to be the first in court claiming innocence because your robot shot somebody. That being said it does sounds like fun, so long as you "Test" on private property.

Man I feel like an old person saying all that.

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Fri Jan 18, 2008 2:41 pm View user's profile Send private message
d_sellers1



Joined: 09 Sep 2007
Posts: 36
Location: Elgin, TX

Post Reply with quote
TheMan wrote:
The CarPC that I'm putting into my truck will be the entertainment system (radio, mp3's, dvd, cd, movies, etc), have control of the environment (Heat/AC/fan, vents, windows, heated seats), have bluetooth/802.11/EVDO for phone/PAN/wireless connectivity, interconnection with the ECU (computer that runs the truck), cameras for many purposes, and many, many other things.

Believe me when I say I know exactly what you're talking about. I'm also a member of MP3Car.com and I have a couple hundred posts in their forum (as d_sellers1, of course). The majority of the software and functionality that you're looking at implementing has already been created with the frontends and additional software. But is this something that needs to be a priority in the software? Personally, I'd rather see UPB support (mainly because that's what I use...) Razz

Derek
Fri Jan 18, 2008 6:10 pm View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website Yahoo Messenger
CribKeeper
Site Admin


Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 653
Location: Overland Park, KS

Post Reply with quote
My car just blew up! $5,000 for a replacement engine =( Anyways, I am going to buy a Police Intercepter tomorrow, although they sold the K-9 unit I really wanted. Anyways, One reason I want one of these is to have the mounting options for more of my car experiments and a car computer.

I bought a DVR to record 4 car cameras, etc. So I am excited to see how much of this stuff I can pack in, so very interested in this topic and will work with you all on it, if there is anything I can do to the software. If you all want to roll your own car interface, I will give you whatever code or help you need too. If you wait on me to do it all, it will be a while. I am so far backlogged, I would consider a good productive night even figuring out what I am supposed to be working on. I am really lost with too much drama (homelife), too many projects and collapse of the tracking and time management tools I was using last year.

So push for what you want, I am capable of little more than focusing on whatever is right in front of me, but if you get me to focus on it, I am very fast....


Vaughn

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Wed Jan 23, 2008 5:53 pm View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
SnyperBob



Joined: 22 Aug 2007
Posts: 630
Location: Illinois

Post Reply with quote
Most of this sounds like reinventing the wheel. Check out my website:

www.mobile-effects.com

If we can get some sort of module in vCrib that will interface with all of the other caputer software out there, I'd be happier than a pig in shiest....

I thought I recognized you from somewhere dsellers (mp3car) Smile
Wed Jan 23, 2008 8:15 pm View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website AIM Address
d_sellers1



Joined: 09 Sep 2007
Posts: 36
Location: Elgin, TX

Post Reply with quote
SnyperBob wrote:
I thought I recognized you from somewhere dsellers (mp3car) Smile

Yup. That's me. I haven't been there in a while so I'm not up to speed on the frontends and secondary software that is available now. I really need my equipment installed in my other car but just haven't felt very motivated to do it since I can't drive that car right now. Now that I don't have a girlfriend any more, maybe I'll get some time to get some of my projects done...

Derek
Thu Jan 24, 2008 8:55 am View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website Yahoo Messenger
CribKeeper
Site Admin


Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 653
Location: Overland Park, KS

Post Reply with quote
Oh yeah, I have no intentions of figuring most of that out. I will use other's experience in the area. I will definitely check out both forums. I also know the owner of i-hacked.com, as he is a local boy here and he has done car computers for a couple years. I have made about 10 misc UIs for vCrib, just let me know the specs and as long as it has network access, the UI should take a day or less to make. So besides screen resolution, what other things will a carputer need that is different from a normal Windows box?

BTW, I just bought a 2004 police interceptor, so it is a highly mod'able car. It is not the K-9 or Swat unit I wanted, but it is a nice police car with under 50k miles on it.

Vaughn

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