Archive for July 2011

We came across the remarkable innovation that makes it possible to have remote stalactite communication and still has portable infrastructure. GATR Technologies has developed an antenna that can fit right into your backpack.
This is an inflatable 1.2-metre satellite antenna that can fit into a backpack and be carried by a single person. It is a double-layered sphere with one layer a nylon mesh and the other made from sail material. The antenna is in the centre. The receiving dish divides the sphere's interior into two chambers and by applying pressure to one chamber you can push the antenna into a parabolic shape. The company already sells a larger, 2-metre version but this one is small enough to fit in an airline's hand luggage area when folded.

For Further info have a look at the following links:
http://www.gatr.com/
http://www.gatr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=71
http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/onepercent/2011/07/inflatable-antenna-you-can-sti.html
We had built the MMA8453Q accelerometer breakout board. We could not test it since long.
For the Circuit we followed what the Datasheet said:

We only had to map it to our pin Configuration as stated earlier.
For testing we used the Famous Buspirate from Dangerous Prototypes.

We wish to Thank Dangerous Prototypes for creating such a nice tool.

Here is a picture of what we were working:

And here is the Command Sequence:

HiZ>m
1. HiZ
2. 1-WIRE
3. UART
4. I2C
5. SPI
6. JTAG
7. RAW2WIRE
8. RAW3WIRE
9. PC KEYBOARD
10. LCD
(1) >4
Mode selected
Set speed:
 1. ~50KHz
 2. ~100KHz
 3. ~400KHz
(1) >1
READY
I2C>W
POWER SUPPLIES ON
I2C>[ 0x3A 0x0B 0x01 ][ 0x3A 0x0B 0x01 ]
I2C START BIT
WRITE: 0x3A ACK
WRITE: 0x0B ACK
WRITE: 0x01 ACK
I2C STOP BIT
I2C>[ 0x3A 0x0D [ 0x3B R ][ 0x3A 0x0D [ 0x3B R ]
I2C START BIT
WRITE: 0x3A ACK
WRITE: 0x0D ACK
I2C START BIT
WRITE: 0x3B ACK
READ: 0x3A NACK
I2C STOP BIT
I2C>
As you see in the Last Lines it prints 0x3A which is the "who am I" kind of address for MMA8453Q.
Note: SA0 is High so the Write address is 0x3A and Read Address is 0x3B

Here is the Commands that were sent:
1. Wakeup command: [ 0x3A 0x0B 0x01 ]
2. Read the "Who am I register" : [ 0x3A 0x0D [ 0x3B R ]

So the Accelerometer is working and now we can conceal the chip package in glue to make it into a robust chip form factor. Next on the list is using it in an actual application.

We would post more updates on that soon. Let us know your comments.
We got our first Android Phone LG Optimus P500 with Android 2.2 Version. This phone has 512MB of internal RAM which is good to give a decent performance. We did not limit us to this, we wanted to make some good use of this mobile. So the Idea came that we can try to have a programming environment right int the Android Phone.
We knew that there is a complete development environment available to use PC as the host and develop applications for Android. But we wanted some thing easier. Something that could help us get Python on Mobile.
We found Scripting Layer for Android brings scripting languages to Android. SL4A in short.

Scripting Layer for Android (SL4A) brings scripting languages to Android by allowing you to edit and execute scripts and interactive interpreters directly on the Android device. These scripts have access to many of the APIs available to full-fledged Android applications, but with a greatly simplified interface that makes it easy to get things done.
Scripts can be run interactively in a terminal, in the background, or via Locale. Python, Perl, JRuby, Lua, BeanShell, JavaScript, Tcl, and shell are currently supported, and we're planning to add more. See the SL4A Video Help playlist on YouTube for various demonstrations of SL4A's features.
We wanted Python so we went for Py4A - Python for Android.
This is the version of Python that's built to Run with the SL4A and includes various functionality such as Blue-tooth Encryption etc.

[1]
Here is a list of files that you need to download:
sl4a_r4.apk: The SL4A Frontend
http://android-scripting.googlecode.com/files/sl4a_r4.apk

textedit-sl4a.apk: Editor for the scripts
http://android-scripting.googlecode.com/files/textedit-sl4a.apk

PythonForAndroid_r5.apk: Python Interpreter for SL4A (Or the latest version available)
http://python-for-android.googlecode.com/files/PythonForAndroid_r5.apk

Python Modules:
pyephem-3.7.4.1-py2.6-linux-armv.egg
http://python-for-android.googlecode.com/files/pyephem-3.7.4.1-py2.6-linux-armv.egg

PyBluez-0.19-py2.6-linux-armv.egg
http://python-for-android.googlecode.com/files/PyBluez-0.19-py2.6-linux-armv.egg

pycrypto-2.3-py2.7-linux-armv.egg
http://python-for-android.googlecode.com/files/pycrypto-2.3-py2.7-linux-armv.egg

Now after you have all these files in the Phone in a separate Directory say "/sdcard/Develop/"
You are ready to go for the Installation.

[2] 
Steps for Install:
- Install the sl4a_r4.apk File (Make sure you have install from Unknown source option enabled in settings)
- Install the textedit-sl4a.apk and PythonForAndroid_r5.apk
- After this transfer the SL4A and TextEdit applications to SD card from settings
- Open the Python for Android App and click on Install
   (The App would now download the nessary files automatically. So make sure you have your internet connection ON in the mobile)
- After the Extraction is done it would show that the installation has been successful, Now click on Import Modules and sequentially install the modules one after another. (All three of them)
- Exit the Python for Android App and then run the SL4A app to get the SL4A Frontend running.
  (Dont miss this else like in the Video the programs wont run)
- Now go back to Home screen keeping the SL4A running in background - Run the Text Edit App
- Browse the SD Card for "sl4a" folder in which the "scripts" directory contains the "HelloWorld.py"
   (should be "/sdcard/sl4a/scripts")
- Now you can edit the file and save it
- Go back to Home screen and Open the SL4A app again. Click the Option button to refresh the files
- Single click on the HelloWorld.py shows the activity bar. (this contains the "Terminal Run" or "Edit" Options)
- Click on the Terminal icon to Run the Modified HelloWorld.py
- You see a terminal window automatically pop out and then says "Hello World"
- Now you would be prompted to Exit the Terminal so click "Yes
That's It - You have successfully executed your first Python Script on Mobile.

[3]
Here is the Video that Demonstrates all procedures after the Files are Downloaded:
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