Author Topic: Dianemo Revealed - Why Dianemo-Rpi2 ?  (Read 152 times)

totallymaxed

  • LinuxMCE God
  • ****
  • Posts: 4586
  • Smart Home Consulting
    • View Profile
    • Dianemo - at home with technology
Dianemo Revealed - Why Dianemo-Rpi2 ?
« on: March 18, 2015, 02:26:14 pm »
Dianemo Revealed - Dianemo-Rpi2 for ARM v7
A New Era in Smart Home Technology

We've been looking at lower cost, small form factor & low energy hardware for Dianemo for a number of years now. In the very early days we looked at hardware based around VIA processors/chipsets which were early attempts at low-cost/low-energy hardware and then the Intel Atom processor arrived and of course a whole host of new small form factor hardware arrived built around it. But although these platforms represented big improvements over what we had before they were still not ideal and still often ran very hot.

Meanwhile the mobile world was evolving around ARM based processors and SOC's which were incredibly power efficient and ran without getting overly hot and delivered ever increasing amounts of computing power. Apart from desktop PC's and laptops everything else around us today has evolved around small low power processors and that means mostly ARM based hardware.

Out of this wave of tiny low power hardware has emerged the phenomenon that is Raspberry Pi (Rpi). The Rpi has sold millions of units and the hardware ecosystem and developer community that has evolved around it is now worldwide and incredibly vibrant. The release of the new Raspberry Pi2 (Rpi2) at the beginning of 2015 was a turning point, as for the first time we had enough performance and memory to envisage running a Dianemo NC software stack on a Rpi.

We see the Rpi2 as the perfect embodiment of what we have in the X86 PC driven world shrunk down to ARM footprint/cost; we have incredibly vibrant hardware add-on communities built around the Rpi architecture (and Rpi2 is backwardly compatible with almost all the Rpi hardware out there) and we also have an equally vibrant and dedicated software community too. So in Rpi2 we have not just an ARM based piece of hardware that for the first time has the performance we have been looking for, but we also have a ready built ecosystem too. Having that ecosystem is incredibly important when you analyse it because it means that we are not 'swimming' alone and can leverage the work going on in other parts of the Rpi community to amplify and extend our efforts and enjoyment. The 'our' in the last sentence applies to both Dianemo the company and to our software customers in equal amounts. There are other ARMv7 based boards out there that would also have the performance we are looking for but none of those hardware platforms have ecosystems like the Rpi. In the end you need a critical mass of other people, most of whom are not interested in Home Automation, but who all share a common enjoyment, commitment and love of a common hardware platform. Joining this community collectively benefits everyone in it too.

So here we are. I'm not going to talk about the specifics of what Dianemo-Rpi2 is or will be here today. That's for the future. But I am sure that ARM based hardware is where we need to be and that Dianemo-Rpi2 is going to be a very exciting platform for all of us to build around.

I'd encourage anyone with an interest in low cost/energy home automation that leverage’s the Rpi hardware/software ecosystem to get signed up for our Dianemo-Rpi2 Preview here;

http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=14026.0

Thanks

Andy

« Last Edit: March 18, 2015, 05:07:51 pm by totallymaxed »
Andy Herron,
CHT Ltd

My Blog; http://ellipticalcurve.com

For Dianemo/LinuxMCE consulting advice;
@herron on Twitter, inquiries@ellipticalcurve.com via email or PM me here.

Latest Athena UI news; http://wp.me/P4KgIc-aF

Get Dianemo-Rpi2 ARM Licenses http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=14026.0

Get RaspSqueeze-CEC or Raspbmc-CEC for Dianemo/LinuxMCE: http://wp.me/P4KgIc-5P

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dianemo-Home-Automation/226019387454465

http://www.dianemo.co.uk

totallymaxed

  • LinuxMCE God
  • ****
  • Posts: 4586
  • Smart Home Consulting
    • View Profile
    • Dianemo - at home with technology
Re: Dianemo Revealed - Dianemo-Rpi2 the lowest cost Core available
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2015, 12:48:43 pm »
Dianemo-Rpi2 - the lowest cost Core available today
A New Era in Smart Home Technology

One of the the most exciting advantages of the Raspberry Pi2 (Rpi2) board is its low cost & small size. If you've been thinking of 'building' your own Core or have always wanted a 2nd Core to just play around with, or prototype with then the Rpi2 + Dianemo-Rpi2 license is the ideal way to do that. In fact it is the lowest cost Core/NC that is available today (even including the Dianemo-Rpi2 license)

You can see the Press launch of Rpi2 and some early reviews of the new board here;

http://www.raspberrypi.org/taps-monitor-is-this-thing-on/

So why would you want a Dianemo-Rpi2? Maybe to run Dianemo-Rpi2 alongside your existing LinuxMCE Core or Dianemo NC if you have one - no need to disturb them at all. Here is what our users are telling us they plan to do with their Dianemo-Rpi2;

  • Have you wanted a Core for ages? Now you can for a total cost of less than $150 USD
  • Always wanted a 2nd Core to prototype projects on? Dianemo-Rpi2 is ideal.
  • Always wanted to build a low cost Core for a family member? Dianemo-Rpi2 is ideal.
  • Always wanted a Core for your Daughter/Son to learn & experiment with? Dianemo-Rpi2 is ideal
  • Got an idea for a Smart Home project you want to prototype? Dianemo-Rpi2 is ideal
  • Is there a Rpi hardware project you want to integrate? Dianemo-Rpi2 is ideal

Of course the new Rpi2 offers an enormous increase in performance with it's 4x 900mhz ARMv7 cores and 1gb RAM this gives the new board about a 6x performance boost overall compared to the Rpi B+ (according to the Raspberry Pi Foundation). This page has a lot of posts & tweets from ordinary Rpi2 users who have been running their own benchmark test on the board too;

http://www.raspberrypi.org/benchmarking-raspberry-pi-2/

The Rpi2 is incredibly affordable so no one can complain about the hardware costs - $35 USD for the Rpi2. Its so small that it can be hidden away almost anywhere you have a power outlet - no one can complain about it taking up half the lounge! Its silent too so no one will complain about the annoying buzz of its cooling fan. Its super low energy too, using less than 5w in its basic configuration - so no complaints there either.

Dianemo-Rpi2 is the perfect 'invisible' Smart Home project that you can have up and running for a fraction of what a PC based system would cost. Simply take advantage of our ARM only Dianemo-Rpi2 license for $99 USD now and you will have the lowest cost Core possible today.

Get a Dianemo-Rpi2 Preview License now for $99 USD - see here for details; http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=14026.0

All the best

Andy
« Last Edit: March 25, 2015, 03:10:19 pm by totallymaxed »
Andy Herron,
CHT Ltd

My Blog; http://ellipticalcurve.com

For Dianemo/LinuxMCE consulting advice;
@herron on Twitter, inquiries@ellipticalcurve.com via email or PM me here.

Latest Athena UI news; http://wp.me/P4KgIc-aF

Get Dianemo-Rpi2 ARM Licenses http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=14026.0

Get RaspSqueeze-CEC or Raspbmc-CEC for Dianemo/LinuxMCE: http://wp.me/P4KgIc-5P

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dianemo-Home-Automation/226019387454465

http://www.dianemo.co.uk

totallymaxed

  • LinuxMCE God
  • ****
  • Posts: 4586
  • Smart Home Consulting
    • View Profile
    • Dianemo - at home with technology
Why Dianemo-Rpi2 ?
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2015, 11:14:00 am »
Dianemo-Rpi2 - making programming & customization easy
A New Era in Smart Home Technology

In Dianemo-Rpi2 we didn't just want to build a smaller more efficient Dianemo system we also wanted to make it much more accessible to ordinary users. We wanted to make customizing Dianemo-Rpi2 by adding new code much easier for people who are not experienced at writing code and in parallel we also wanted to make laying out & designing UI's a much richer and more visual experience.

Adding the code for a new device template or scenario will be a simple process dragging, dropping and connecting visual objects together. The objects will be written under the hood in Python, and if you are a Python programmer you can create your own objects and add them to the system (these objects will be shareable between users/systems). The process of creating the code for a Device Template will involve dragging some pre-built objects into the editor and connecting them together to indicate how data should be passed from one object to another. If say your device takes input from an door bell for example and needed to react to the button being pressed you would drag out a 'Switch' object and 'watcher' object and connect the 'watcher' object to the 'Switch' objects output. Now when the 'Switch' object changed state ie someone pressed the door bell your system would be alerted by the 'watcher' object and could react in some way. This is a simple example but it explains the high level visual process of adding code to Dianemo-Rpi2.

If you know Python and your device template needs something special that is not in the object library already then you can create a new object by writing some Python code and adding it to it. Most users will not need to know or code in Python and will simply use the standard Objects. Once you have created the logic of your Device Template then you can then layout any UI screens your template needs visually too. Simply drag & drop buttons, sliders & other UI controls into position and associate the UI screen with the visual code object you created earlier and you have a complete Device Template. Device Templates can be shared with other users easily too.

The same visual editing process will make changing or creating Dianemo-Rpi2 UI skins just as easy. Simply open the UI screen you want to modify in the visual layout editor and make any changes by dragging button objects or any others around, add new objects or adjust the layout visually. When your happy with your changes save them. If you are comfortable editing HTML5/Javascript in a text editor then you can edit UI skins that way too. As with Device Templates UI skins can also be shared easily with other Dianemo-Rpi2 users too.

We hope Dianemo-Rpi2 will provide a powerful and accessible visual environment for customizing and extending the system while also providing a rich Python based coding environment for those who know Python and have coding experience. Hopefully both types of user will find Dianemo-Rpi2 a great environment to build and develop in. Obviously I am only providing a very basic overview here and I hope to be able describe more details and in depth examples in the future.

As ever please if you have questions either email them to us here; inquiries@ellipticalcurve.com or post your question here in this thread.

All the best

Andy
Andy Herron,
CHT Ltd

My Blog; http://ellipticalcurve.com

For Dianemo/LinuxMCE consulting advice;
@herron on Twitter, inquiries@ellipticalcurve.com via email or PM me here.

Latest Athena UI news; http://wp.me/P4KgIc-aF

Get Dianemo-Rpi2 ARM Licenses http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=14026.0

Get RaspSqueeze-CEC or Raspbmc-CEC for Dianemo/LinuxMCE: http://wp.me/P4KgIc-5P

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dianemo-Home-Automation/226019387454465

http://www.dianemo.co.uk