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Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

Hey guys,

I need some advise on what I should be looking at for bluetooth LE.

What I want: I have my own sensors (for a variety of things), and I need an interface that will basically receive the data, transmit it through a wireless bluetooth LE singal, so that I can receive it on my PC/smartphone.

What I am looking at: Arduino boards, Intel Edison boards

Concern: Minimal programming/tinkering is really ideal, but Arduino/Intel Edison doesn't look like it's going to be that simple. I haven't worked with these before, and after looking around online at a lot of other people's projects, the work seems too much. Agree? Or is it because I haven't done it before?

So does anyone know of something better/simpler? I have looked at some stuff like Texas Instruments' Sensortag, which looks really nice, but I don't know if I can take out the sensors inside and just put mine in and still have it working.

Thanks for your time guys!

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

I just had a look at the Wunder Bar from relayr. I think that could be a good start.

We need to accept a certain playfulness if we are going to do serious work with the new generation of devices - especially the IoT.

Don't it it! Even if it looks edible...

Gunnar Englund
Half full - Half empty? I don't mind. It's what in it that counts.

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

"Don't it it! Even if it looks edible... " shall read: "Don't eat it! Even if it looks edible... "

The kit includes a main unit (WiFi and BLE) plus sensors for light, attidude and acceleration (gyroscope), temperature, IR, sound and external signals. You learn lots from it.

Gunnar Englund
Half full - Half empty? I don't mind. It's what in it that counts.

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

Some of the uC ancillary type boards contain both sensors (or sensor I/O) and BT, but they often lack the processor to connect the sensor data to the BT. In other words, the card often require that a processor (e.g. Arduino, Raspberry Pi, or whatever) be plugged in, so that it can pull in the sensor data and then communicate it back to the ancillary card for BT transmission. I'm not sure that the WonderBar might not be in the same category.

The one that I linked to on eBay is apparently intended to be stand-alone. And thus contains some sort of processor and therefore requires (obviously) some software to be programmed into it.

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

Ah, I'm mistaken!! The Wonderbar does contain a "Freescale ARM Cortex-M4 MK24".

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

Seems to me that the Arduino and a bluetooth would seem to be the most flexible and most likely to already have open source code for doing what you need.

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Of course I can. I can do anything. I can do absolutely anything. I'm an expert!

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

On its face, the Arduino requires too much power to be feasible. But in fact, it's actually already a solved problem:


So it very probably floats to the top as the best, cheapest, fastest solution. The parts are as cheap as chips, via eBay or other online vendors.

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

I have found in a month of Arduino-ing that the libraries and examples that are available are so good that the programming side is just cut'n'paste. It took about 3 hours to put together a bunch of my latest $1.50 parcels from China to produce a pair of boards linked via 433 MHz with a remote LCD showing distance, and an ultrasonic sensor head, and a hugely annoying beeping sound. It is of no practical use, but then I've never built a radio before. Or an ultrasonic tape measure. On Aliexpress you can get Arduino Unos for around 5 bucks including shipping, Minis are a bit less, they are better for integrating on a PCB or stripboard, not as good for prototyping..

VE1BLL- great link.


Greg Locock

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RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

Re: Arduino

Beware the recent FTDI drivers fiasco. FTDI recently issued new USB-to-Serial drivers via MS Update, and these drivers arguably-illegally reset the cheap work-alike devices' USB VIDs and/or PIDs codes (?), rendering them effectively non-functional. These drivers have since been withdrawn, and I assume FTDI is licking their MS inflicted bruises. Reportedly this fiasco may impact some Arduino related tools.

The above parroted details are likely not perfectly accurate. A bit of Googling will find more accurate details.

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

Needing to use older or alternate drivers for the FTDI work-alike chips is a long-standing issue.

This most recent news is slightly different than the long standing issue. It's about the FTDI Work-alike chips being essentially (soft-) bricked by the very recent overly-aggressive trademark-enforcing driver. The Work-alike chips were being rendered inoperative, and would reportedly no longer work anywhere, under any driver.

There's a method to bring them back to life, but it's convoluted. The codes in the (soft-) bricked hardware need to be reset using a specific tool.

Reportedly this relates to some Arduino or Arduino-related hardware containing the work-alike chips.

It's complicated, and those impacted should look into it using better info from more-complete descriptions.

RE: Bluetooth Low Energy Communication Utilities

The evil driver was pushed out and withdrawn all within about a week or so. If you weren't on top of your Windows Updates, you might have missed it. It seems like most people missed it.

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