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Photo Remind what’s coming in version 1.1

Heres what is coming for the version 1.1 update:

Japanese French and German localization.

When you pick a photo from your camera roll it automatically gets the geo location of the photo if available .

bug fixes.


Photo Remind 1.0

Version 1.0 as been submitted to the store and should be available soon.

Easily add a new location either with gps or by placing a marker pin at the location. with space for notes and inspirational photos for making a mood board for the style or just extra details about the place that you want to shoot.

Location based reminders: Add your locations to the iPhones monitoring service,  and then pops up a notification when you’re nearby.

Sharing: email or tweet a location to a friend. tweet geotags the location of the tweet as the places location, email sends a pre-formatted google maps link to the location.

Making your own accesory board

So you want to design and build your own accessory. lets base it off the atmega 328 with bootloader on it (installing a bootloader on a blank is possible but lets face it for your first one its always good to know it will work) this is a “dip” package which is bigger but means you can solder it straight on or easily add a socket to swap the chip.

Parts you need:

Designing your board:
The usb host takes (D10-13) 4 pins  [the spi communication pins]
you have:
  • 10 Digital IO pins 0-9 [usually used for out but can do digital on off]
  • 6 Analog in 0-5
Materializing your design:
Theres two ways to end up with your circuit ready to use in your hands.
  • comercial pcb manufacture
  • homemade
Comercial pcb’s are nice, they can make the board more precisely, do more than two layers. add a stencil layer. and coat it to prevent corrosion.
Homemade are a bit more limited. but like a finger painting you accept the imperfections since you made it by yourself ! also you can turn out a single run ready to solder board in a hour.
Comercial is recommended for products you want to sell or mass produce.
If wanting to make the board yourself the transfer method is recommended. (there is also a light transfer method)
Etching using the transfer method can be quite easy, the hard part is getting a nice transfer. make sure the copper surface is clean from finger prints, if not clean with acetone or rubbing alcohol. Its possible to do a double sided board at hone with a laser printer. printing out each sides layout lining up and then ironing paper toner to the correct copper side. the paper will become stuck to the copper board and its best to submerge the whole board in water then gentlyrub away the paper hopefully leaving the toner stuck on the copper board.Check over the design for any imperfections and fix them with a etch resist pen. cut the board to size and its ready to be etched

  • Ammonium Persulphate
  • bowl
  • sink
  • thermometer
  • hot water.
  • non metal stirrer
it’s best to pick a bowl the right size for the board your board so that the board will be able to be submerged easily.  use the thermometer to wait for the temperture to be xx degrees then add the required amount of ammonium perisulfate and stir vigorously agitating, it is possible to etch at room temp it just takes more like an hour. amonium perisulfate is dangerous it will stain clothes so take care while handling and mixing.
after a few(or many) minutes you should start seeing the edges of the copper disappearing.  and keep going until all the exposed copper is gone.
 Now fish the board out and drop it in the water bath. to clean it and pull it out and dry it. acetone is excellecnt for rmoving toner form the board. now just drill your holes and solder up the board.
22g per 100ml

Design suggestions: for circuits that require 3.3v sensors and 5v sensors.

showing a schematic using sparkfuns eagle libary solder junctions to alternate between 5v and 3.3vMake use of the solder jumpers  “SOLDERJUMEPR_2WAY” to change between a 3.3v and 5v for sensors less chance of frying a sensor that demands 3.3v. a made up board will have no default. with you or the end user having to solder bridge the jumper makes you stop and think which to use. the cool benefit is if you want to change sensors at a later date you can just de-solder one jumper and bridge the other voltages gap.

Having the senosors as 3 pin jumper holes allows sensors to have long leads leaving applications of your product flexible. such as if you need a thermal sensor a distance away from the board.

Introduction to Open Accessory Framework

Using Android and Arduino together

At Google IO 2011 they announced a interesting framework as a iOS developer I always wanted to be able to interface with circuits using my phone. they announced the open accessory framework allowing you to interact with Ardiuno and other microcontroller platforms.

The potential for this is amazing. augmenting a phone (which has cameras, gps, cellular data connection,wifi) with hardware such as motors, relays, leds , and exotic sensors. have many artistic possibilities.

Approaching this from a non computer science-y way lets jump straight in to making and worry about programming our own app from scratch later.

We are going to work off the example code given to us in Spanish by Alex TC

open accessory diagram from the android dev site

Things you will need:

  • Android device with 2.3.4 +
  • Arduino based microcontroller (if you already have a  uno or dumevello you need a usb host) or buying new official adk mega (awesome but $$$), freetronicsUSBDroid (less pins but less $$)
  • Breadboard and Jumper cables
  • your Androids charging cable
  • RGB led (or 3 led’s)
  •  Light sensor
  • Computer

for this example i’m using a Dumevello which has less inputs and outputs than the mega, but is cheaper and more easily replicated

into a home made board if you want at a later point.

Android Side:

Download eclipse (the classic is recommended) the eclipse ADT plugin and the android SDK. (the latest version)

So install eclipse and once you’ve done that its time to add the Android Developer Tools (ADT) and the Android SDK

showing the eclipse dialog boxes

open elclipse. in the menu bar go help > install new software
A new window will open and go to the top right and select add

enter “ADT Plugin” for the Name and insert the url for the “location” Click OK In the Available Software dialog, select the checkbox next to Developer Tools and click Next.In the next window, you’ll see a list of the tools to be downloaded. Click Next.scroll through the license agreements, then click Finish. now close then re open eclipse.

now we need to set up the ADT preferences so that it knows where the SDK is.

firstly go to your downloads folder and find the sdk unzip it and move the folder to a safer place like Documents.

Go to Eclipse > Preferences).

Select Android from the left panel.

now it will ask for the SDK Location in the main panel, click Browse… and navigate to the SDK folder then. click apply then ok.

Now go to the menu bar again and select Window > Android SDK and AVD Manager.

check that the you have the sdk level 10 developer tools selected (or in the future android 4.0)

oookkkayyy so now eclipse is set up nicely. now we need to actually deal with code.

the example code is called demokit its in this ADK release download then unzip

open eclipse.

file > new Project > android project
select new project from a existing source and link it to the “app” folder in the ADK release
give it a name and then click next and select google api’s 10.
and then finish.

all the code should now be in the projects pane on the left of the ide.

To enable running apps on your phone from eclipse on your device:      Settings > Application Settings > Development.  and tick USB Debugging

when its plugged in the usb port it should state USB Debugging mode and have a cute computer chip like Android logo up the top left on the phone.

after this is done push run in eclipse and select your phone.

Setting up the arduino. 

layout for the wiring using arduino breadboard, red, green, blue led and a light dependent resistor.Place the usb host on top of the Arduino (the pins should match up to the holes) the power requirements of the system is somewhat demanding compared to a normal (if there is such a thing) Arduino circuit, due to having to provide power (5v 0.5amp) for the phone you have to provide greater than 5v to the vin pin

4x rechargeable AA’s in series is my favorite portable method that works so far, a 9V battery or a plug in a transformer 7-9v highly recomended.

So to start we are just going to have the RGB led control and the LDR as input.

its a nice clean easy circuit to breadboard and easy to check that everything is working.

upload the modified demokit sketch and upload to the arduino then your ready to plug it all in!

right click on your arduino app an select “show package contents”

resourceslibraries leave this window open and find your adk download again and navigate to firmware > arduino libs copy the contents to the libaries folder.

Arduino code: download modified demokit to work on atmega 128, unzip and open the .pde in arduino and upload to board.

now when you plug the phone into the usb host the app should auto launch. and you can see the light reading and control led 1.

3 tap 300 is up on itunes

the logo for 3 tap 300This is the first app I have released. A free simple tool to check whether a iPhone contact is on the same network as you. letting you know if you will be able use carrier exclusive benefits such as free minutes to call them.

In New Zealand there is a free txt Number 300 which you can text a cellphone number to and a response is sent whether a number is on the network (as in the same network as you). The user is presented with a table view of all the contacts ordered alphabetically. Upon selection it loads up a text messaging window with a filled out. with the user just having to push send. The user then wil receive a SMS from 300 with the result.

you can find the app on iTunes

I’ve also released the source code  up on github


Year 3 Semester One  smart systems worked in a group to build a internet controlled model sail boat.
using Arduino with ethernet, linux flashed routers. a laptop web-server and home made custom antennas for long range communication all easily mobile