Everything you wanted to know about ESC 'Hello There!' badges (but were too afraid to ask) - Embedded.com

Everything you wanted to know about ESC ‘Hello There!’ badges (but were too afraid to ask)


This blog is intended to be a living, breathing document that contains links to anything and everything to do with the ESC 2016 wireless mesh-networked “Hello There!” badge, including any new hot-off-the-press games and applications.

For those who already know what they are doing, let's start with a link to all of the open-source hardware and software files associated with the current “official” release of the badge:

Alternatively, if you aren’t too sure what this is all about, here's a quick video to bring you up to speed:

I'm going to be blogging furiously about this badge and all the interesting things we do with it. Here are my blogs thus far:

While I'm thinking about it, the heroes involved in creating these little beauties are as follows:

  • The “Hello There!” badge concept was conceived by yours truly (you're welcome).
  • The nitty-gritty design was created by the folks at Synapse Wireless (they also supplied the RF Engine).
  • The circuit boards were fabricated by the guys and gals at Sunstone Circuits.
  • The boards were assembled/populated by the chaps and chappesses at Screaming Circuits.

If you want to play around at programming these little scamps, you'll need to download Synapse's integrated development environment (IDE), which is called Portal. Also, for future reference, Synapse's wireless technology is known as SNAP.

Once you've downloaded Portal, you can upload your programs into the badge using an appropriate USB cable. Alternatively, you can upload your programs “over-the-air” using an appropriate wireless interface, such as the SNAPstick wireless USB module. Here are some links you may find useful:

VIP The badges were programmed to use an extra CRC bit for better reliability in noisy environments. However, the version of Portal that is available for download at the time of this writing doesn’t yet have this option selected by default. Happily, this is a quick change. Open the “Preferences” menu under the “File” header in Portal and you will see something similar to the image below. Select the items related to “Appending” and “Requiring” CRCs. This will allow you to see the Badge as a standard SNAP Bridge.

(Source: Synapse Wireless)

If you have any questions about Portal, SMAP, and products from Synapse Wireless in general, don't ask me feel free to contact the folks as Synapse (email or call 877-982-7888 877-982-7888 FREE ) and tell them: “Max says Hi!”

On the other foot, if you develop any interesting applications or games for the “Hello There!” badge, then don’t dilly-dally or shilly-shally — contact me immediately by emailing me at . We would love to make your offerings available to other badge holders and possibly include them in future releases of the badge.

Remember that, in order to keep abreast of the latest and greatest ESC news, you should follow my blogs on Destination ESC. Now, I'm afraid I must away, because I want to carry on playing with my own “Hello There!” badge. Until next time, have a good one!

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