OrangePi is here

I’ve received my OrangePi today. For those unfamiliar, OrangePi is a board that sells for roughly $20 (paid something like 16 yoyos including shipping from Aliexpress) that goes beyond what RaspberryPi has to offer (at least in hardware department).

SoC – Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 @ 1.6 GHz (likely 1.2 GHz instead) with an ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU up to 600 MHz
System Memory – 1GB DDR3
Storage – micro SD card slot (up to 64GB)
Video Output – HDMI with CEC and HDCP support, AV port
Audio I/O – HDMI, AV port, on-board microphone
Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet
USB – 3x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG port
Camera – CSI Interface
Expansions – 40-pin Raspberry Pi compatible header with 28 GPIOs, UART, I2C, SPI, PWM, CAN, I2S, SPDIF, LRADC, ADC, LINE-IN, FM-IN, and HP-IN
Debugging – 3-pin UART header for serial console
Misc – IR receiver; Power button; Power and status LEDs
Power Supply – 5V/2A via barrel jack (micro USB OTG cannot be used to power the board).
Dimensions – 85 x 55 mm (vs 93 x 60 mm for Orange Pi 2)
Weight – 38 grams

The only thing that disappointed me was the fact that it cannot be powered via miniusb, however my long forgotten 5V Sony PSP power supply has found another purpose. I’m going to use the OPi to control all the sensors and gather data. In my next post I’m going to go through creation of my first working (!) mini project – remotely controlled extension lead. Stay tuned.

Why u no update?

Hi all and thanks for the patience, there’s been some delays with parts I’ve ordered both on eBay and AliExpress, so had to postpone my experiments.

On a side note, folks from just released an updated 101 board. It keeps the same robust form factor and peripheral list of the UNO with the addition of onboard Bluetooth LE capabilities and a 6-axis accelerometer/gyro to help you easily expand your creativity into the connected world. The module contains two tiny cores, an x86 (Quark) and an ARC, both clocked at 32Mhz. The Quark core runs ViperOS RTOS and helps the Arduino core to accomplish the most demanding tasks. It comes with 14 digital input/output pins (of which 4 can be used as PWM outputs), 6 analog inputs, a USB connector for serial communication and sketch upload, a power jack, an ICSP header with SPI signals and I2C dedicated pins. The board operating voltage and I/O is 3.3V but all pins are protected against 5V overvoltage.

So…. what’s the plan?

Over last couple months I’ve attended few presentations by Dave Hunt and really enjoyed all the cool stuff he was bringing with him. Did some digging, done some reading – and some planning too.

So… what’s the plan?
I did my homework and found few off-the-shelf solutions, such as this Masterplug Indoor Power TMIH24-MP 24-Hour Immersion Heater Segment Timer or a bit more sophisticated Timeguard NTT03 Timeswitch which would do the job easily, but why stop there? What if I wanted to be able to get hot water on my way home from work? All I needed was:

  • a phone with data plan (duh! have one already)
  • a circuit that would receive signal from the phone
  • some sort of relay to switch the heater on/off
  • software to tie it together

Sounds easy? We shall see…

Hello World!

If you ever tried learning programming chances are you know what “Hello World!” means. By tradition, the very first program you’re going to write in a new programming language is the one that simply outputs those words to the screen.
There are millions of blogs out there, but this is mine!
“My road to intelligent home”, big words right? I wanted to jump onto IoT bandwagon for a while and finally decided and purchased few bits and pieces online with the intention of learning something new and useful while catching up with the technology.
Actually, what really convinced me was the fact that my water heater doesn’t have a timer, and I was tired of having to wake up an hour earlier just to switch it on to have a hot shower in the morning.

Anyway, my name is Marek and welcome to my blog.