Wireless internet on the arduino

Hello everyone,

This is my first post on this site, please excuse me if I am in the wrong in any way and let me know for next time.

I am just getting started with uControllers, but I have been playing with electronics for a fair while now. I must confess I don't yet have an arduino, but I do have a teensy, it was a cheaper way into the uC market for me.

What I am asking about is for a project which I have been thinking about, its a car monitor. Basically watch temps, rpm, etc. Also hopefully down the line it will start and stop the car and open doors, etc.

What I would like to do is create a web page for the uC so I can access it from where ever, these days getting internet access on my phone anywhere is fairly easy.

I have seen the arduino web server and was wondering how hard it would be to get it connected to the internet wirelessy. I do not want to have a whole computer in the car, just a nice neat box.

Any idea's?

Thanks in advance.

I do not want to have a whole computer in the car, just a nice neat box.

You sure?

Ever seen a mini-ITX box with a custom modded 7 inch touch screen, wi-fi, and a boomin' bass MP3 player and GPS. I'm pushing 40 and I want one in my truck...

;D

The problem with something like a mini-ITX machine is that it sucks a bit of juice, and it sounds like @cr0sh wants something that's left running 24x7 (given the remote start comment) so being low-power is critical.

Otherwise, I absolutely agree with you!

@cr0sh, these links may be of interest:

http://www.geekmyride.org/wiki/index.php/Jon's_RX-8 http://www.practicalarduino.com/projects/vehicle-telemetry-platform

Jon

www.freetronics.com www.practicalarduino.com

The problem with something like a mini-ITX machine is that it sucks a bit of juice, and it sounds like @cr0sh @blackman wants something that's left running 24x7 (given the remote start comment) so being low-power is critical.

I guess I am saying something like a car computer shouldn't be absolutely ruled out, unless space or power is a real issue; it should be a part of the whole, if you want it. The Arduino could act by itself with the car powered off for simple tasks (remote start, remote door unlock, etc), while the car computer would be for use while the vehicle is running. I certainly don't expect someone to run a PC 24/7 in their car, even a mini-ITX (although you might be able to get away with doing it with a BeagleBoard).

If available power ever becomes an issue though, and you have the room, you could always put in a bigger alternator, and a deep-cycle battery for "accessory" usage (unless the vehicle is small).

Hi @cr0sh, sorry about mixing up the nicks. I meant @blackman of course.

Regarding extra batteries, I've been through a few iterations and my current system uses a 133Wh external laptop battery which is charged through an in-car charger connected to accessory power. I tried with deep-cycle batteries and it was a total failure: they may be "deep cycle", but that's only relative to regular SLA batteries. Take them below about 80% charge and they'll still be dead after a couple of cycles, as I discovered the hard way.

At present I'm running both an Arduino-based system and an Alix-1 system, with functionality in the Alix-1 being progressively implemented in the Arduino. Eventually it'll get to the point where the Alix-1 can go away entirely. At present I'm using it for remote-start and serving the web interface that does vehicle telemetry and a Google Maps mashup, but everything else (including datalogging) is supported by the Arduino.

Anyway, lots more info at the above links if you're interested.

Thanks for the replys guys.

Yeah basically I want something that I can monitor from anywhere, and the first thing I think of is wireless internet. If I have to, ill settle for a wireless link to my shed, xbee or something and then to the internet for that, so while the car is home I can see it. And just normal remote entry and engine start, just wont be from anywhere.

Anyways its still in the planning stage, so Ill have a good think about it for a while anyways, something else might pop into my head. Or someone else might find a way to make the arduino wireless, you guys are amazing with what yous have been coming up with.

Thanks again for the help guys.

I tried with deep-cycle batteries and it was a total failure: they may be "deep cycle", but that's only relative to regular SLA batteries.

The kind I was thinking of are usually called "marine" or "rv" batteries; they're large (like a car battery) lead acid batteries designed to be used for extended periods of time, and recharged from a generator.

Are we thinking of the same thing?

:)

Are you looking for something like the yellowjacket? http://asynclabs.com/store?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=24&category_id=11

Yes, that is a great help. It would be good if I could get a USB internet dongle working with the webserver somehow. Im going to do some research, just wish I new more about the programming side of things. Thanks again guys.

@cr0sh: A bit different, I used a 28Ah deep-cycle SLA battery for a while. Sounds like the marine / rv batteries may be a better option. The Li-Ion battery pack I'm using now is pretty good though.

@blackman: It's highly unlikely that you'll get a USB Internet dongle working with an Arduino. The demands it places on the host are pretty steep. What I've experimented with is using a wireless USB Internet router with the dongle plugged in, and a WiShield on the Arduino to associate with the router. I've done that for about a dozen industrial monitoring systems so far and it works very well.

Yeah thats what Ive been leaning to, couldnt really see another way that I could get the results other than using that sort of hardware. Thanks, ill look into it more.