Tag Archives: Wi-Fi

Comma AI’s Panda is a Car Hacking Dongle for Self-Driving Possibilities

Comma.ai is a self-driving car startup founded by George Hotz, the American hacker known for unlocking the iPhone and the PlayStation 3. Comma AI who originally wanted to build self-driving car kit, canceled their initial project due to safety concerns from NHTSA but later open-source their project and has now launched a Panda, an On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) II adapter that is expected to expose a car sensor data with the hopes of turning that information for self or assisted driving application.

Panda OBD-II Dongle

Panda is a small size OBD II dongle and will plug into the port of most new cars made since 1996 with preference giving to vehicles of 2010 and above. Panda supports 3 CAN (Controller Area Network), 2 LIN (Local Interconnect Network) and 1 GMLAN (General Motor Local Area Network) for access to almost all of the sensors in most of the cars on the road. It also includes WiFi and USB port to help interface with a computer and smartphone.

With a dimension of 34 mm x 50 mm x 27 mm, Panda can read a host of data. Panda will be able to measure the car speed, location (if available), fault codes, braking force, engine speed, gas level, and many more. To help parse all that information Comma AI also launched Cabana a CAN analysis tool.

Panda can be paired with Openpilot, the company’s open-source autonomous driving software and this pairing could be used to take control of a compatible vehicle’s gas, brakes, lights, and steering.

Some Specifications of Panda dongle

  • Dimensions –  34mm x 50mm x 27mm
  • Weight: 32g
  • Car Interfaces –
    • 3x CAN
    •  2x LIN
    • 1x GMLAN
  • Connectivity – USB (with fast charging support) & WiFi
  • Software Support
    • Android and iOS chffr (getchffr.com)
    • Cabana (comma CAN analysis tool)
    • Openpilot (open source self-driving)
    • Python library (pip install pandacan)
    • SocketCAN (Linux can-utils, Wireshark)
    • Wi-Fi ELM327 (Android and iOS apps)
    • Windows J2534 (Car manufacturer tools)

According to Hotz,

“the real point of shipping Panda out to people is to create that interface that cars don’t have. We want to plug cars into computers.”

Panda is available for ordering at about $99 on the comma AI product page and a GPS with no Wi-Fi variant available for $199

Particle Mesh – A Mesh-Enabled IoT Development Kits.

Particle, which has been known for its collection of  IoT focused development boards, and its Internet of Things (IoT) platform (Particle Cloud) has launched a new set of mesh network-enabled IoT development kits called Particle Mesh. Particle Mesh is expected to provide developers more insight into implementing mesh networking technology. They help to collect sensor data, exchange local messages, and share their connection to the cloud.

Particle Mesh Hardware
Particle Mesh Hardware

Particle Mesh features a new family of mesh-ready devices with Wi-Fi, BLE and LTE connectivity and also integrated with the Particle device cloud. Particle mesh consists of three main boards: The Argon, The Boron, and the Xenon. Each of these Particle Mesh boards has at least one form of outside connectivity option (LTE/3G/2G, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth) and an onboard mesh network hardware to facilitate setting up a mesh network for local communications between sensors and other particle mesh boards. All three devices are built around the Nordic nRF52840 MCU + BLE + mesh radio and follow the Adafruit Feather specification making it compatible with most Adafruit FeatherWing hardware accessories. (more…)

Turn Your iPad Into A Second Screen with Luna

It is possible now to turn your iPad into a second display using Luna Display! Luna Display is a hardware solution that extends your Mac desktop to your iPad, creating a wireless second monitor maintaining high resolution.

In fact, Luna is one of Astro HQ products, a startup working on delivering tools for designers and animation creators. It is originally  founded by two ex-Apple engineers, a reason to understand the loyalty for Apple products!

With no complicated settings, you can set up Luna in seconds using your already available Wi-Fi. This feature is Powered by Astro HQ LIQUID technology. Anyway if Wi-Fi is not available, USB can be the alternative.

 LIQUID technology provides:

  • Uncompromised image quality
  • Lightning fast speeds
  • Lag-free performance at 60 frames per second
  • GPU acceleration, so your Mac stays fast and optimized
  • Hand optimized ARM assembly to maximize battery life
  • Velocity Control, which analyzes network conditions dozens of times per second

System Requirements

Works with any modern Mac – Luna requires a Mac running macOS 10.10, Yosemite (or later). Recommended configurations: MacBook Air (2012 and later), MacBook Pro (2012 and later), Mac mini (2012 and later), iMac (2012 and later), Mac Pro (Late 2013).

Works with any modern iPad – Luna requires an iPad running iOS 9.1 (or later): iPad 2 (or later), any iPad Mini and any iPad Pro.

 

You can perfectly use Luna Display with the software Astropad, a software that allows you to draw directly into your Mac apps using your iPad and it works over wifi or USB.

“Luna extends both Astropad Standard and Astropad Studio to provide the ultimate drawing experience with the best second screen solution for iPad. If you are a creative professional, Luna has been designed with you in mind.”
Unlike other solutions, Luna uses the raw power of your graphics card, and harnesses it in order to allow you have the full potential of graphics acceleration. Check this video about the technology used in Luna Display, battery use and energy.

To know more about Luna, you can check the Kickstarter campaign they launched earlier.
Fortunately, the 1,450% funded campaign is still running and still has 39 days to go. You can pre-order your Luna Display gadget for 65$, or the Artist bundle for $99, including 1 Luna Display and 1 year Astropad Studio.

For more information and details, you can check the official website of Astropad and Astro HQ. Also, take a look at the campaign video here.