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1  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Frequently-Asked Questions / Re: Open Source Data Logger Project Using the Arduino? on: February 07, 2009, 02:04:52 pm

Its been a while since I last accessed this forum, my interest in a open source data logger based on the Arduino had to be placed on the shelf as I was dealing with a lot of other projects, the paying ones had to come first!

I am still dealing with several calls daily with projects where the Ardunio would be an ideal fit.  Basic research applications where they have a zero budget and an open source solution would solve all their problems.

I am thinking about creating a specific website which will act as a central resource for open source data logger projects, allowing the less technical to communicate with us with there project idea's.  Additionally, It might also work as a place for developers to share code between each other and exchange idea's.

I had plans on competitions, prizes, etc to generate interest and give some incentive for everyone to contribute, I have had both positive and negative comments on implementing this.

What do you you all think?  Good or bad idea?

I noticed that this thread has been viewed over 10,000 times!!  It would appear that there is a lot of interest out there.
2  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Frequently-Asked Questions / Re: Open Source Data Logger Project Using the Ardu on: December 13, 2007, 05:06:47 pm

Sorry for the delay, so many projects on at the moment.  So, yes, memory would be an issue.  USB is a great idea, maybe SD, but then is it needed?  I guess problems might arise if we wanted to keep this a lower power device.  Certain small loggers out there have a small 64k ~ 256k worth of memory, great for small jobs and the majority of the applications.  No one be looking at storing GB's of data as no one is really looking at any high speed data acquisition.  A sample every minute is enough for most of these applications.

Most units out there still use RS232 for data download and configuration.  After all, with 256k of memory, its not a huge problem downloading that over the serial port.  All the big players just have a command to download the data.

Give you an idea of applications, I had two this week, one was from a university looking at weather station application.  The ideal situation would be to have several low cost stations at remote sites.  The one wire station from AAG would be ideal, but they also want to store the data from the sensors.  They didn't have the budget for one basic remote weather station, let alone several units.  The other was actually from a charity dealing with distributing medical aid to Africa.  They have small temperature loggers in place, but the costs add up for an installation with four or five refrigerators, so they would like one central data logger.  Again, there budget was $200 and I could not find anything that would do it.

As for prize money, I can certainly put something down, maybe pull in a few other companies as well.  Again, I would want to keep this all on an open source platform.  Allow other people to copy and improve on the design.
3  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Frequently-Asked Questions / Re: Open Source Data Logger Project Using the Ardu on: December 06, 2007, 06:19:28 pm

Glad you like the idea!  I was thinking 0-5V, 4-20mA (using a shunt), would be nice to have 30k thermistors (pretty cheap and lots of them), digital pulse counting and maybe also 1-wire?!?!  Of course, the 10bit A/D might be a small stumbling block, but to be honest, most applications really don't really require anything with a higher resolution.  Also, have the ability to trigger a digital channel on an alarm condition.

As for software on the PC side, I was thinking a simple/basic programming interface, for example, the user could enter the sensor type (i.e. 0.5 to 4.5V), the scaling and logging rate.  Then can download the data and export it as a CSV format, all straight forward stuff.  I guess my main thing would be packaging, making it as simple as possible for the non-technical user.

What do you all think?
4  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Frequently-Asked Questions / Open Source Data Logger Project Using the Arduino? on: December 06, 2007, 01:25:41 pm
Hey Guys,

I am heavily involved in the data logger/acquisition industry but I feel that its missing something, and that would be an open source data logger.  The issue I come across is pricing, I deal with customers all over the world and find that 90% of my clients (mostly educational) just don't have the budget for an easy to use, compact data logger, any stand alone unit with 8 channels is going to cost a minimum of $500, add the software, cable, etc...soon gets out of hand.

So I was thinking that an open source logger based on the Arduino could be an ideal solution, the biggest issue would be having something easy to use for the end user, a nice front end on the software, but allow the more technical to make modifications for the odd sensor.

I would even be prepared to start some sort of contest to kick start this project, throw in some prizes to generate some interest.

Anyone feel that this would be worthwhile?
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