An Indiegogo wifi-enabled IoT pearl:
With tiny Linux boards popping up like dandelions, it was only a matter of time before someone came out with a really tiny Linux board. This is it: a tiny board less than an inch on each side with an 802.11n System on Chip running OpenWrt on Linux. The best part? You can pick one up for $20 USD.
VoCore, The Tiny Internet Of Things Thing.
As wonderful a platform as the Beaglebone Black is, the board is a piker compared to the add-ons available for the Arduino. The Bone’s universe of capes is limited and pretty pricey.
A current device from an engineering team in Germany, though, caught our eye and opened our wallet on Indiegogo: a low-cost daughterboard that makes it possible to use nearly any Arduino shield on the Beaglebone Black. They promise shipping by May, so it should arrive in time to write about it in my upcoming book, A Beaglebone Black Cookbook: Seventy-Five Recipes for Making Things with a Microcomputer (Packt Publishing, pub. date Fall 2014).
Arduino Shield to BeagleBone Black Cape | Indiegogo.
Perhaps not quite as elegant as the Sony, and it may be trying to do too many things, but the Omate smartwatch looks pretty powerful and slick, nonetheless. Far more robust than the Pebble, its Android OS and Arm architecture position it as a promising player in the (getting very) crowded market.
Ever sketch out an idea for a circuit on a napkin and then never did anything with it?
Now, with Circuit Scribe — a wonderful new project on Kickstarter — there’s no longer any excuse for getting those iterations going. Circuit Scribe is a rollerball pen that writes with conductive silver (and safe!) ink. It’s a marvelous way to draw your ideas for your circuits on a regular piece of paper, then immediately start testing the idea…using the paper sketch itself.
Goodbye breadboard, hello back-of-napkin prototyping.
New Low-power SOC Widens Door for Wearables
Dialog Semiconductor has launched what it claims is the industry’s lowest power Bluetooth system-on-chip. The SmartBond DA14580 is the first Bluetooth Smart solution to break the 4mA current barrier for wireless transmission and reception says Dialog, operating down to 0.9V.
If true, the SOC effectively doubles the battery life compared to other current solutions on the market, whether it’s peripherals, connected watches, wristbands or any wearable.