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#80056 - 13/03/2002 05:47 Master In-Car Interface
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Here's the plan people,

I'm gonna install an ethernet network into the car and wire different devices straight onto it, example - GPS Antenna, OBD2 engine interface, etc, etc.

Then I'm gonna link it to a laptop and develop some cool software.

Then, if I can get my head around the empeg ethernet interface I'll try and port some software to our favorite little toy (empeg) - connecting to all devices via ethernet!

The developments will not be compatable with early empeg players but given a few months I should be able to come up with some interesting stuff!

I figure when I start to get into it then it will open up so many doorways!
_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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#80057 - 13/03/2002 10:34 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: cyberco]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
How are you going to connect the various accessories to the network? As far as I know none of the accessories you list have eithernet interfaces. You could probably connect them with Cat5 and RJ45 to DB-9/25 converters, but that's not really ethernet and you'd still have to find each one a serial port or use some sort of switch.

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#80058 - 13/03/2002 11:51 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: matthew_k]
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Look under the projects newsgroup and you'll see quite a few articles regarding an ethernet adaptor from a company called siteplayer!

This will be the basic chipset that I'll use to interface various items together!

The idea is to use loads of these little devices to interface the outside world to ethernet via RJ45 then plug them all into a hub that's been converted to run from 12VDC!

No reason why it shouldn't work is there!

_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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#80059 - 13/03/2002 17:34 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: cyberco]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
Quite right, i'd compleetly missed that. Looks like quite a fun toy to play with. I'd be interested to see how it works once you get something started... Most hubs are DC powered anyways, the netgear one i've got here is 12volts so that shouldn't be a problem...

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#80060 - 13/03/2002 23:57 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: matthew_k]
mtempsch
pooh-bah

Registered: 02/06/2000
Posts: 1996
Loc: Gothenburg, Sweden
Most hubs are DC powered anyways, the netgear one i've got here is 12volts so that shouldn't be a problem...

Except that the voltage in the car can vary from say 9 to 15+ volts between cranking the starter and high revs with an enthusiastic charge controller... And the 12V line usually has plenty of hum and transients... Might or might not affect a given hub, but it's often more to it than just "it's 12V".

/Michael
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/Michael

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#80061 - 14/03/2002 00:13 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: mtempsch]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
Eh, hubs are cheap, right? :-)
(yeah, you've got a point)

Matthew

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#80062 - 14/03/2002 01:30 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: matthew_k]
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Does sound quite exciting doesn't it!

The only thing is I'll have to test it all with a laptop or a wireless link to the home network because it's easier for me to write software on this platform!

But once I start to get results ...... watch out empeg!
_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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#80063 - 14/03/2002 01:33 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: mtempsch]
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Yea, a car power supply isn't very smooth, but a few big capacitors will soon smooth it down, the trick worked well with when fitting big amps in the boot!

I'm sure it won't take much electronics to make a stable 12V system, with the only problem occuring whilst cranking the engine (or thumping the bass too hard!!!!!).
_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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#80064 - 14/03/2002 14:50 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: cyberco]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
Yup, if these things turn out to be easy to use they could make a great comercial product. I've contemplated buying an old livingston portmaster to do the exact same thing for other projects I've had. I've never really had a need for the dozen serial ports though.

If only all product manufacturers would switch to ethernet for the "standard" interface life would be so much easier. Scanners, digital cameras, printers, toilets... It can't really be that much more expensive can it?

Matthew

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#80065 - 14/03/2002 15:30 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: matthew_k]
wfaulk
carpal tunnel

Registered: 25/12/2000
Posts: 16706
Loc: Raleigh, NC US
Cyclades makes some nice, fairly inexpensive terminal servers (from one port to 48 ports) these days for ethernet->serial applications. Plus, they support SSHv2, which is extra-nice. And they run Linux, which is ... well ... neat ... but not really an issue.
_________________________
Bitt Faulk

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#80066 - 14/03/2002 18:35 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: matthew_k]
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Maybe it has been more expensive in the past and much more difficult, but these days it's nothing that a small chunk of silicon can't sort out!

Very exciting project, but one for the weekends as my weeks just fly-by and seem so busy these days!
_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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#80067 - 14/03/2002 19:24 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: cyberco]
tman
carpal tunnel

Registered: 24/12/2001
Posts: 5528
You will still need some sort of microprocessor between the device and the siteplayer module. A PIC chip would do this perfectly.

The problem with the siteplayer module is that the serial interface is actually for a predefined siteplayer specific language that allows you to write and read values from the siteplayer memory. You'd need to put some work into it before you cacn use any random serial device.

They say they will release a new firmware that allows telnet access directly to the serial port but they've been promising this for a few months now and haven't done anything about it yet.

You might want to either consider using something else like the Rabbit boards or waiting to see if they release the necessary updates.

- Trevor

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#80068 - 14/03/2002 22:21 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: mtempsch]
grgcombs
addict

Registered: 03/07/2001
Posts: 663
Loc: Dallas, TX
They make 12/14 volt electronic voltage regulators for cars these days. Don't remember the name, starts with a J. If this isn't feasible, a quarter farad capacitor would be about $30 and would be plenty for most of these electronic devices.

My question is: Cyberco are you blowing smoke up our rumps or are you actually serious and capable of persuing this?

This sounds a little too fantastic and/or expensive to implement, but if you're serious, I'll allow my hopes to be increased.

Greg
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#80069 - 15/03/2002 02:00 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: tman]
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Woow, what can I say, you've opened my eyes with the Rabbit boards!!!! I think I need to sit down for an hour or so and check the site out in more depth!

Nice one, thanks.

Any other "similar" hardware you know about please tell as now is the time to make such decisions!

_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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#80070 - 15/03/2002 02:22 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: wfaulk]
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Cheers, I'll check this one out too, keep the hardware links coming, cheers everyone....
_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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#80071 - 15/03/2002 02:40 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: grgcombs]
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Err, well the question is not CAN but more like WHEN!

I've been working in all sorts IT projects for over a decade and I don't wanna blow my own trumpet but I know enough about electronics muddle through most needs, and as a collegue once told me I've forgotten more about programming than I'll ever know!!!!

As a self employed "I.T. Solution Provider", I've worked on many varied different projects, from interactive video, production control systems, through security, etc, etc, and for some big named UK companies too.

Also, I am the ultimate gadget man, and also have a love for fast cars, as you can imagine this project is quite exciting to me!

It's not down to how much it costs, or to how difficult it is, because both are bounderies that are easilly overcome, it's down to how much time I can spare!

The week days are just crazy, working on all sorts of projects, but the weekends are all mine! So I've only got limited time to play with my ideas, but I have a lot of drive so believe me if I want it to happen then IT WILL!

Check my company website at www.cyberco.net or my personal website at www.mark-morrison.co.uk and I think you'll not question my ability on this topic,

but the proof of the pie ....... time will tell!
_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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#80072 - 15/03/2002 08:32 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: wfaulk]
tman
carpal tunnel

Registered: 24/12/2001
Posts: 5528
Fairly inexpensive? 4 port Cyclades TS is 679 and the 48 port is 3266! But this of course could be the ripoff prices they usually charge in the UK. Surprising how many times the exchange rate is $1 = 1

I think I'll stick with the Rabbit/Siteplayer boards personally

- Trevor

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#80073 - 15/03/2002 19:14 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: tman]
wfaulk
carpal tunnel

Registered: 25/12/2000
Posts: 16706
Loc: Raleigh, NC US
I noticed that well after I posted. Sorry. The higher capacity ones are much more reasonably priced, especially considering their capabilities and the competition's prices. Probably not a good solution for this application. Sorry.
_________________________
Bitt Faulk

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#80074 - 16/03/2002 06:47 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: wfaulk]
tman
carpal tunnel

Registered: 24/12/2001
Posts: 5528
It's definately a nice piece of kit though. Bit expensive for in-car use

Other terminal servers with anywhere near the same set of features I've found are at least 2x the price!

- Trevor

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#80075 - 21/03/2002 16:11 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: cyberco]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
In reply to:

Err, well the question is not CAN but more like WHEN!



So? When? You've had a week, that should be more than enough. :-)

Matthew

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#80076 - 21/03/2002 17:04 Re: Master In-Car Interface [Re: matthew_k]
cyberco
member

Registered: 29/01/2002
Posts: 109
Loc: United Kingdom
Well I gotta earn a honest crust during the week so it's only the weekends that I have free, it's been a week but it's only been one day development time for me!

I'm seeing a guy about the hardware, he's at Cebit this week but we are meeting on his return, so don't expect anything for a few weeks!

Got a long easter weekend coming up soon, that could be a good window to aim for if you wanna see some "real" results!

-M.
_________________________
----------------------- www.cyberco.net www.3000gt.co.uk

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