Internet connected power usage monitor

RasPi_energy_monitor

Our homes are filling with energy hungry devices. Some of them are constantly active like fridge, routers, lighting, some switched off or on stand-by. Each of them takes some portion of energy that reflects on the end month bill. Some things you can control, but some not. So in order to hunt inefficient nodes you need some sort of energy usage monitoring. You can find lots of implementations where some are simple indicators, other are advanced and web enabled. TSalwach @ github.com have built his own version of energy monitoring system which looks really promising. His implementation monitors all three phases where he extracts several parameters: RMS Voltages and currents on each phase Apparent power (product of RMS voltage and RMS current) Real (active) power Reactive power with inductance/capacitance indication … Continue reading

Python web server in Raspberry Pi

Pi_Http_Server

There are many ways of serving web pages from Raspberry Pi. One of the ways is to install Apache web server software. This is still a standard solution for most of purposes. These things require quite some performance and this is not always an optimal choice. If you need simple webserver for your home project that would easily work with GPIO you could try Python web server. Python web server relies on flask – an extension that provides web microframework. It allows building and rendering webpages with few lines of code. Sankar have written a short tutorial on how to start with simple static webpage from Raspberry Pi. From there you can move on with more advanced pages that include dynamic content and so on.

Tearing Raspberry Pi Zero apart

Raspberry Pi Zero is really minimalist but yet powerful minicomputer featuring all necessary parts required to run Linux or other operating system. It features Broadcom BCM2835 processor at 1GHz, 512MB of DDR2 RAM, micro-SD slot, mini-HDMI capable to output 1080p60 video, micro USB for data and power, 40-pin GPIO, unpopulated composite video. All this fits in to 65mm x 30mm x 5mm form factor. Price for it is ridiculously low – $5. you may need micro-USB to USB adapter and HUB if you would like to have WiFi functionality, or connect keyboard. It is ideal small embedded Linux based board that is more power efficient than standard Raspberry Pi boards and still can run powerful control applications. Lets leave this topic to other debates. electroupdate shared his video where he … Continue reading

Compact Raspberry Pi camera

pi_camera

There are several Raspberry Pi based camera projects. PiJuice decided to build something even smaller, so he came up with compact camera project. He’s chosen Raspberry Pi A+ which is smallest Rasberry Pi. Next thing he had to deal with was power supply. He used PiJuice module which takes care of charging battery and generating necessary voltage for Raspberry Pi. There is one obvious choice for camera module so nothing to add here. On a back side of camera he attached Adafruit 2.2” TFT screen which comes with four navigation buttons. He also laser cut basic enclosure to make it look like real camera that can be taken anywhere for capturing photos and videos.

E-ink display for Raspberry Pi

pi_e-ink_display

Raspberry Pi is a powerful but small Linux based computer board that gained its popularity in the hobby world. It has everything you need to build a computer except display. Since there are no DSI based display modules available, people try to solve this problem in several ways. They use HDMI based displays, composite video, serial monitors. Probably most of small projects rely on GPIO where they plug in their custom boards with various types of LCDs. This seems to be OK, but running such displays usually require additional driver/software to run and it occupies I/O pins, that can be used for other purposes. While we are waiting for official Raspberry Pi DSI display we have to deal with those workarounds. The choice is really big. You can find may … Continue reading

3 Weird and Wonderful Raspberry Pi Innovations

The Raspberry Pi is one of the most acclaimed inventions of our days – a credit card sized computer with the potential to improve our lives in an incredible variety of ways, and educate a whole new generation of hardware and software engineers. In honor of the recent Pi Day (March 14th, or 3/14) and the recent launch of Raspberry Pi 2, here are five of the most interesting (and sometimes weird) innovations we could find that were built using the microcomputer of the future (strong enough, but hopefully not used to play awesome slots at Platinum Play). 1. Picrowave by Nathan Broadbent According to his website, Made by Nathan, the web and mobile developer Nathan Broadbent first thought of a smarter microwave after reading a post on Reddit about … Continue reading

Comparing GPIO speed between Raspberry Pi 1 and 2

RPI2_GPIO_speed

Raspberry Pi version 2 has changed playing rules between Linux boards. With raspberry Pi 2 here came faster CPU with four cores, RAM jumped to 1GB, so naturally we would expect faster speeds everywhere including GPIO. Joonas have ran several benchmarks to show the increase in numerical values, so we could make conclusions. He run several common tests with available software libraries and GPIO access methods. Results actually look very promising as for almost all methods speed increased twice and more. For instance Python Rpi.GPIO based raw speed increased from 70kHz to 243kHz. Shell command driven IO became also 2.5 times faster. So this is great news for everyone who was struggling to the limits. For more info and benchmark tests go to GitHub.