17 December 2006

Busy Lately

So, Jeannette and I have been working for the last several weeks on a paper to present at Embedded World in February, but it was due on Dec. 15th. We had it finished a week early to go through the appropriate approvals at work, but we were a bit naïve to think that our first shot at our first paper ever would just sail through the approval process. I actually believed that people would like us to trumpet our company's products and show the world it is easy to put them together in interesting ways. Well, it isn't that simple, it turns out, and it is even more difficult when the headquarters in California declares plans to reorganize and save money (meaning job cuts) the day after you put the paper in the approval loop. Needless to say we missed the deadline, and since the dust hasn't settled on the work situation, the whole presentation thing is on hold (if not altogether off).

Since we didn't get the paper signed off, I don't want to say much about it. But it involves GPS, wireless communication and my camera. Since it doesn't look like I will be able to build the gadget any time soon, I decided to take a look at GPS alternatives. You see, from the photo below, to do this right, I have to carry my GPS, tethered to the camera by 7 feet of cables, while trying to operate the camera and zoom lens at the same time. It is a pain.

The Geotagging Cable Clusterfunk.

So taking a cue from a guy on the Digital Photography Review forums, I decided to go with the Bluetooth GPS route, which eliminates 6 feet of the cables, like so (not my picture):

So I need to find a replacemeny for my ancient, by technology standards, Garmin GPS-12 that I got for my birthday from my dad in 1999. I hate to get rid of a perfectly good piece of tech, but this unit is getting long in the tooth. The sensitivity isn't great and it eats batteries like crazy. And it is bulky. So I have been searching for the new candidate. And I think this is what I want. It is a tiny little super performance GPS receiver that is solar assisted. That is, the battery lasts 50% longer when the solar panel is exposed to the light. Yeah, it would be cool if it could be powered 100% by light alone, but we're not there quite yet, technology-wise. Maybe someday. Until then, this baby is small enough, quite powerful and it spews its data out via Bluetooth, eliminating the cables.

But I have run into snags. I am having trouble finding it in Europe (there are several on Ebay, but people keep outbidding me!). In addition to that, I am having trouble finding the Bluetooth to Serial Converter that I need anywhere in Europe for a reasonable price. And Ebay isn't helping there either.

So, hopefully I can get those two pieces (Santa, are you listening?) soon, and get rid of this cable fiasco. And then, I need to figure out how to deal with the other part of the little gadget we wanted to make. But I'm not gonna talk about that, at least not right now.


At Saturday, 30 December, 2006 , Blogger MortgageTop said...

Hi, here’s some more info on the HOLUX GPSlim240 Wireless Bluetooth GPS receiver
The compact size and practical design of the GPSlim240 makes it both easy to carry and also wearable across the chest, making the style-conscious user look even more stylish.
The GPSlim240 uses a SiRF Star III chipset and features 20 - channel GPS Receiver for fast acquisition and reacquisition. With 200,000 effective correlators for fast Time To First Fix (TTFF), the GPSlim240 works well even at poor satellite signal. Among other features you should know that it includes a built-in WAAS/EGNOS Demodulator and is compatible with Bluetooth Serial Port Profile (SPP) completely.
The satellite tracking abilities of the HOLUX GPSlim240 Bluetooth GPS receiver are also excellent, as it can track 20 satellites at a time. Data updating is also very fast, with 1-second updates for position data and 1/10 second updates for satellite signal. All this technology however is presented in a stylish and compact case, and the receiver is appealing to a large variety of social categories.

Are you interested in the GPSlim 240? Visit ps-gps.com and make the most of our offer. All products are internationally free shipping have an insurance and a tracking number. For 10% off any product use the following discount code: ctrend




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