Crowbits Master Kit Tutorial – Part 2: ESP32 intrusion scanner and visual programming

Crowbits Intrusion Scanner

I started Crowbits Master Kit review last month by checking out the content, user manual, and some of the possible projects for the ESP32 educational kit including a 2G phone and a portable game console. For the second part of the review, I’ll go through one of the lessons in detail, namely the intrusion scanner to show the whole process and how well (or not) it works. Let’s go to Lesson 5 directly, although I’d recommend going through the first lessons that provide details about the hardware and visual programming basics using Letscode program, which is basically a custom version of Scratch for Crowbits The user manual introduces the project, explains it is to detect intruders, and lists the learning goals as we’ll learn how to control the servo and play music on the Crowbits kit. Kit Assembly But first, we’ll have some assembly to do, in a similar way that’s we’d assemble a LEGO robotics kit. Each assembly step […]

Raspberry Pi CM4 based predictive maintenance gateway features Google Coral Edge AI accelerator

Techbase IModGate-AI predictive maintenance gateway

Techbase had already integrated the Raspberry Pi CM4 module into several industrial products including Modberry 500 CM4 DIN Rail industrial computer,  ModBerry AI GATEWAY 9500-CM4 with a Google Edge TPU, and ClusBerry 9500-CM4 that combines several Raspberry Pi CM4 modules into a DIN Rail mountable system. The company has now announced another Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 gateway – iModGATE-AI – specially designed for failure monitoring and predictive maintenance of IoT installations, which also embeds a Google Coral Edge TPU AI module to accelerate computer vision. iModGATE-AI gateway specifications: SoM – Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 with up to 32GB eMMC AI accelerator – Google Coral Edge TPU AI module Video Output – HDMI port Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet USB – USB 2.0 port Sensors – 9-axis motion tracking module with 3-axis gyroscope with Programmable FSR, 3-axis accelerometer with Programmable FSR, 3-axis compass (magnetometer) Expansion 2x 16-pin block terminal Advanced Analog Inputs (up to 24-bit) with tensiometric input support RTC […]

Raspberry Pi case embeds 192 programmable LEDs, speaker, microphone, and sensors (Crowdfunding)

LumiCube Raspberry Pi LED Enclosure

Most Raspberry Pi enclosures are designed to protect your board from dust, provide easy access to ports, and in other cases, ease the installation of hard drives or SSDs. But Abstract Foundry’s LumiCube does much more, and just calling it a case or enclosure is an understatement, as while it does house a Raspberry Pi, it also comes with 192 programmable LEDs placed over 3 panels, a speaker, a microphone, as well as several optional motion & environmental sensors, and a small 2-inch LCD display. LumiCube specifications: Acrylic base 3x RGB LED panels with 64 programmable LEDs each Audio – 2W speaker and microphone Display (optional) – 2-inch 320×240 IPS screen for system parameters or other info (e.g. sensor data) or images. Note that it can now show the Raspberry Pi desktop Sensors (optional) – Light & gesture sensor, BME280 temperature, humidity and pressure sensor, BNO055 IMU (accelerator and tilt sensor) MIsc – Optional buttons Compatibility – Raspberry Pi 3 […]

Crowbits Master Kit Review – Part 1: A first look at the ESP32 based education kit

Crowbits Master Kit Review

Crowbits STEM education kits comprised of magnetic modules launched on Kickstarter a couple of weeks ago. There are five kits increasing in difficulty with the Hello Kit just requiring the student to connect modules to get started, i.e. no programming required, to the Crowbits Master Kit based on a battery-powered ESP32 module suitable to create your own phone, portable game console, radar tower, etc… Elecrow sent me the latter for evaluation, and in the first part of the review, I’ll unbox the kit, see how modules mechanically fit together, and have a quick look at the user manual, before trying one or two projects from the manual in the second part. This is the second STEAM product from Elecrow that I review, as I reviewed CrowPi2 Raspberry Pi 4 laptop last year. Let’s open the package. We have a total of six modules with two joysticks, an ESP32 module with TFT display and battery, a laser ranging sensor, a keyboard, […]

Arduino MKR IoT Carrier embeds display, sensors, and I/Os for IoT projects

Arduino MKR IoT Carrier board

Arduino Oplà IoT Kit was launched last fall as the first open programmable IoT platform from the company. The kit included everything you need to create your own IoT devices with MKR IoT carrier with a 1.3-inch OLED color display,  environmental sensors, capacitive touch buttons, Arduino MKR WiFi 1010 board, external PIR motion and moisture sensors, a circular plastic enclosure, and various cables. But the community soon wanted to only buy the carrier board without having to purchase the whole kit, so Arduino has just started to sell MKR IoT Carrier board as a standalone product. Arduino MKR IoT Carrier features & specifications: Compatible with Arduino MKR family boards with WiFi, LoRa, NB-IoT, or 3G cellular connectivity Storage – MicroSD card holder Display – Round 1.3-inch OLED display I/Os 2x 24V relays 3x Grove connectors include two analog and one digital (I2C) Sensors  – Temperature, humidity, pressure, RGBC light, gesture and proximity, IMU with 3-axis accelerometer and 3-axis gyroscope Misc […]

MutantC v3 open hardware DIY UMPC works with Raspberry Pi and compatible SBC’s

MutantC V3 Raspberry Pi UMPC

FOSDEM 2021 open-source developer event will take place online later this week, and yesterday we compiled a list of talks, with one entitled “MutantC PDA introduction – open source and hardware PDA shell” piquing my interest. The talk will be about the third revision of the hardware which allows you to create your own UMPC or handheld computer powered by a Raspberry Pi SBC or other compatible single board computers including Asus Tinker Board S, PINE H64 Model B, Banana Pi BPI-M4B, among others. MutantC v3 is versatile and highly customizable as can be seen from the specifications highlights: Supported SBCs – Raspberry Pi Zero, 2, 3, 4 and compatible. Arduino for keyboard – SparkFun Pro Micro 5v/16Mhz or SparkFun Qwiic Pro Micro – USB-C Display – 2.8-inch, 3.5-inch, or 4-inch “GPIO” LCD such as AdaFruit PiTFT 480×320 display Custom PCBs for display, mainboard, and thumbstick Expansion External 12-pin “docking” connector with UART and I2C Internal header with power I2C, […]

Agromon smart agriculture wireless transmitter connects ModBus RS485 sensors to WiFi, LoRaWAN, Sigfox, or NB-IoT

Agromon ESP32 smart farming transmitter

The Internet of Things has many applications including smart agriculture . A few months ago, I talked to a local shrimp farm owner who used Arduino and ESP8266 boards to monitor water and activate pumps only when needed to get shrimps healthy and save on his electricity bill. He built his own solutions, but there are also companies offering easy-to-use smart farming solutions such as Malaysia-based Wondernica’s Agromon “interface wireless transmitter” designed specifically for smart agriculture applications. Agromon has two variants with support for 2 sensors (WR-AGRO-2S) or 3 sensors (WR-AGRO-3S) that share the following specifications: Connectivity – WiFi, Sigfox (RCZ 2/4), LoRaWAN, NB-IoT Sensor Interface – Modbus RS485 (analog input / 4-20mA / 12V-14V output) Power Supply – 12V DC (tolerance up to 14V); supports batteries, solar power, or power adapter Power Consumption – Sleep Mode: 3 mW Dimensions – 130 x 90 x 40mm Ingress Protection – IP67 Agromon transmitter is powered by an an ESP32-WROOM-32 WiFi (and […]

Zora P1 Amlogic A311D Development Board interfaces with Orbbec 3D Cameras

Zora P1 Development Board

We have already seen the powerful Amlogic A311D powered Khadas VIM3 SBC, and Orbbec announced the Zora P1 development board for Orbbec 3D cameras, supporting robotics, gaming, smart homes, etc. Some of the other products showcased at the CES 2021 by Orbbec include its first 3D sensor with time-of-flight (TOF) technology, the latest Astra+ camera, and a real-time industrial 3D camera. “Innovations in 3D imaging, combined with broader advances like 5G, artificial intelligence, and ultra-fast processors, are transforming the application landscape for designers and engineers,” said David Chen, co-founder, and director of engineering at Orbbec. “Our new camera with time-of-flight (TOF) technology is a great example. Its high resolution and tracking capabilities make it perfect for all kinds of products including fall detection, security, even at-home yoga and exercise products.”  Orbbec’s Zora P1 Development Board Zora P1 is a processing board for developers and enthusiasts to integrate 3D imaging and associated computing tasks for demanding industrial applications. Orbbec has specially designed this long-lasting solution to work with its 3D cameras. This board runs Linux on the Amlogic A311D processor. […]