New to arduino looking for some guidance

hello all, My name is Steve & i am someone with alot of ideas & drive, but lack some knowledge on how to accomplish them. Enter the Arduino.

i have a few things that i would like to get setup & going but not sure how to accomplish them.

1 idea that i want to implement is a HUD (heads up display) in my car that will display current speed, or RPM, or boost levels...etc.. the payload of what is being displayed is not something i am 2 worried about since, once i implement 1, im sure the other ones would be similar

i have a few old cell phones (blackberry curve, or a moto razor) & would like to use either of those screen. I also have a consult cable, that will interface with my car's ecu. it has the proprietary Nissan consult plug on 1 end & a serial cable on the other end. I plan on cutting the serial end off & plugging it into the arduino.

so the issue i guess i have, is how do i get the data from the consult cable to the arduino in a way it can understand, & then have the arduino pass that info to the LCD.

In my mind i visualize it like this: cables get plugged into the arduino from the cable, the arduino then gets the raw data from the cars ecu., i then will have to write some code to translate that data (there are a few open source consult apps out there that i can probally copy some code from) then i will have to then translate that data to the LCD (this would be basically plain text, then when i get comfortable i can probably make it a bar graphic or something)

any help, or direction would be greatly appreciated.

I currently have a Arduino ADK board (a bit over kill i know, but i will build & test on it, then move it to a smaller arduino or a pic chip if possible)

Welcome, if you are new to Arduino I would advice, spend a night or two on the tutorial section to go through the examples. You will learn a lot of how things can be done on an Arduino. Also the reference section contains some nice examples. And there is the playground with all kind of libraries.

In the examples you will find many snippets that are usefull for your project (you will recognize them :)

In the meantime any (specific) questions, just ask

I think you need some more hardware to read from the can bus. This along with the arduino should be able to take and display any data you would want.

my car doesnt use CAN, its ISO9214 (i think i forget the exzact numberS)