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Author Topic: Free GPS shield...tell me what you think  (Read 1136 times)
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Worcester, MA
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Well as the title says...I have a new GPS shield (http://www.dsscircuits.com/articles/i2c-gps-shield.html) I'm going to be selling soon and was hoping to get some feedback on it before I start selling it.  It's a new twist on the standard GPS in that it has a microcontroller onboard that parses all the data and makes it available via I2C. 

I'm looking for some honest feedback on it so if anyone's interested PM me or what not and I'll send you one to keep (only one available).  Preferably someone who's used GPS and is familiar with the Wire library.  Let me know.

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If you don't get any other takers, I'll give it a whirl.... but I've never used GPS before, though you could get a accurate "how easy it was to use" account
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I've dabbled a bit in GPS (had a hacked bluetooth one attached to my arduino for a while) and I2C.
Got a few things I'd like to try out with a GPS on my arduino so I'd be happy to give it a try if you want.

Looks like a nice shield with 10Hz GPS smiley I hadn't ever thought about using an extra microcontroller for something like this - what MCU is it on the shield?
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Thank you all for the interest...I think Mowcius snags the shield because it sounds like he has some experience with GPS.  Mowcius...PM me where you want it shipped too.

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what MCU is it on the shield
I decided on using an Atmega328 because it had the I2C hardware built in and I wasn't sure how big the code was going to be.
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I decided on using an Atmega328 because it had the I2C hardware built in and I wasn't sure how big the code was going to be.
Ahh - hacking potential smiley Especially with the ICSP header - will you be releasing the code for the chip?

I'll send you a PM.
Depending on what I think of to do with it (after having a play around) I might pass it on to some people at Leeds HackSpace to have a play with too - could stick it on my roomba smiley-grin
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I received the shield today - testing is in progress smiley
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I had a look at the register map and had the following idea:

In clock chips you often have some alarm function.

I imagine an alarm function for this GPS shield, especially as there is a processor on board that can do some mathgic smiley-wink

type 1 alarm: destination reached alarm  (similar to alarmclock)
          maybe also an destination almost reached alarm...

type 2 alarm: longitude exceeded; with 2 long registers one can define an allowed area - similar for latitude; (and height)
          if both long & lat alarms set define a square (don't go outside the cave)

And of course as the GPS provide quite accurate timing a "normal time alarm" would be a nice to have ...

if the alarms go off, the shield can optionally make a pin high to notify the Arduino (jumper - which pin?)

Sofar my ideas for a 2.0 version smiley-wink
Rob
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Rob Tillaart

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There are pins which can be used to notify the arduino of stuff (high impedance normally) so that sounds possible.

I think I'm right in saying that the chip on board is running at 8MHz and has no arduino bootloader but ISP is easy enough.

wayneft, is the code for the on-board chip going to be released?
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type 2 alarm: longitude exceeded; with 2 long registers one can define an allowed area - similar for latitude; (and height)
          if both long & lat alarms set define a square (don't go outside the cave)

I think you're referring to a geofence if I'm reading correctly.  A lot of the hand held tracking devices let you define a radius based off your current position which will trigger an alarm if the unit leaves the defined area.  I did actually plan on including this feature because my original project where this whole idea stemmed from (PS3 Tracker) would be using a geofence.

I had several features that I wanted to add but in the end just kept it simple.  That's another reason I for the ISP header so people could hack away.  I do plan on releasing the code soon.  I've been pretty busy building these things...apparently they're getting pretty popular (why oh why did I use 0402 parts!!!!)

 
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I've been pretty busy building these things...apparently they're getting pretty popular (why oh why did I use 0402 parts!!!!)
That's cos they're cheap!

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I do plan on releasing the code soon.
Great - I look forward to it.
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geofence
yeah that was the word I was looking for.
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Rob Tillaart

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