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- Amazon is getting into the IoT cloud business.
- Chris views this similarly as Electric Imp with the server and the client (the small battery powered device). Brandon was on the show talking about it.
- It’s not always just pushing commands down to a battery device. Sometimes the devices publish to graphing services like analog.io/imp.guru.
- Adafruit and Sparkfun also have publishing services, which Dave thinks will be hopeless against a service like Amazon.
- Amazon has a set of development boards that already work with the service.
- While Dave doesn’t think the second place people will work, he has uploaded videos to Daily Motion (vs YouTube) as a hedge in case they ever usurp the big dogs.
- Pirate Electronics is a nice electronics educational program online. However, they recently wrote about why they chose Python for microcontrollers (which aren’t actually micros), which seems like they are optimizing for the wrong thing.
- National is making some older parts EOL, though it may be that it’s only certain versions of chips (packages, lead free, etc). The LM567, a tone detection chip, is on the list of EOL.
- Dave asks about how a die shrink works at a fab.
- Analog and Maxim Integrated may soon be….integrated. What will we call them, Maximalog?
- There have been over $110B in mergers so far this year.
- Dave remembers how Maxim released new databooks consistently. Referencing the parts contained within required the cross reference in the index.
- Parts.io is now fully open to the public, no registration required. Chris was also on The Sparkgap Podcast talking about how to find op amps (and Parts.io as an extension of that).
- The conference that Chris is helping set up (The Hackaday Superconference) is now open for registering for tickets.
- There will soon be a 19 hour flight from Perth to London. Dave recalls traveling 48 hours (with time changes) to get to Europe.
- You can communicate with the Amsat Fox-1, which is now in orbit.
- Chris is back on the robots train. What won’t automation and robotics do into the future?
- The Skarp had funding suspended on Kickstarter. What does this say about future projects that have a “prototype”.
Great show as always !
Skarp has no working prototype. A working prototype should at least be able to fulfill one of the claimed benefit of the product. Quick nah, Not burning nah, Portable nah, working on a triple A nah. For me they didn’t demonstrate anything. Sure there were poorer built projects that got through, and kickstarter should be shamed for that, but Skarp getting the boot is not a loss for any sane person out there.
I never liked the electric imp or the spark because they’re closed (source and hardware) and if the backend website shuts down you’re left with a pricey piece of garbage. All the doodads that force you to go by their own web-service only should die quickly or open up. I have a spark sitting on my junk pile just for that reason and it’s the only kickstarter I regret funding.
I hope the amazon solution will be open source, but I have to see the fact before getting excited.
I have this concern about “if the backend website shuts down”. Interestingly the market seems to have had an affect on electric imp because now they have 4 tiers of the cloud service including one that appears to allow total independence. There is a new-to-me term on their site called “software escrow” in their marketing literature.
little bit off-topic but another example is LastPass, a password manager that was doing nicely but then got acquired by an unpopular company. What happens if you ‘invest’ in any solution and then it goes downhill. My first experience with this was when my family bought Betamax instead of VHS : O
ru4mj12 (@ru4mj12) says
Even corporate giants like google, often pull the plug on projects/services at will, so it’s never without risk!
I’ve been thinking of using an mbed supported platform (like the NUCLEO-F302R8), but Microsoft’s .net Micro Framework looks equally powerful (ex Cerbuino Fez with an STM32F405) and allows code to be written in C# and VB! Other boards (Aimagin Fio StdSTM32F103, BBB) have great Matlab/Simulink integration. I also like the Lego Mindstorm approach just for the Labview capabilities. Sheesh.. too many options!
Amazon? blah, try Walmart.
Yes, I said Walmart :o) http://www.techweekeurope.co.uk/cloud/walmart-open-source-cloud-178927
They have been doing wireless IoT at huge scale for ~10 years now http://www.usanfranonline.com/resources/supply-chain-management/rfid-technology-boosts-walmarts-supply-chain-management/
Interesting post on slashdot by perpenso:
“Walmart computerized their inventory, supply chain, ordering and payments back in the 1970s. This includes automation, inventory at a store gets to a certain level and a shipment order is automatically generated to resupply from a distribution center. Distribution center gets to a certain level and excess is transferred from other distribution centers or a digital purchase order gets sent to the product’s manufacturer.
Cash registers were networked to the minicomputer in the store, reporting all transactions. Stores were networked to HQ via satellite and reported sales every 15 minutes. HQ did massive data mining at national, regional, state and local levels. Optimizing store inventory for local tastes. Again, 1970s.
Their data mining was such that recognized patterns were added to the automated supply chain management. For example when hurricanes are forecast pop tart sales spike in florida and the gulf. Their software monitors weather reports and when hurricanes are forecast they automatically ship pop tarts from midwest distribution centers to florida and the gulf.”
and another one from Trailer Trash(lol):
“Walmart is doing something like $300,000,000,000 per year in sales now, yet I can buy something at a Walmart store, immediately go to a different store for a return and when they scan my receipt the order comes up immediately. All the while about $9500/second in transactions is being dumped into their database.”
Im sure when Moore and Noyce approached VC with the idea of semiconductor company first thing out of VC was “LOL, you cant compete with Motorola, you might as well pack up and go home”. Amazon does a lot of things right, but they are EXPENSIVE. You might look at the pricing and say its only 10 cents or a dollar per x, but when you compare complete solutions they are equal if not more expensive than dedicated hardware in your own datacenter. Amazon might offer cheap computation, but you will may out of your ass for transfer and storage! You want cheap storage? check out Backblaze.
but but, but amazon has like 12 server locations!!1 – sure, if you are willing to pay 12 times over, otherwise your stuff lives in only one of them.
Andrei Cimpoca says
Totally not silly IoT idea:
Picture this: So you can have a long knob over a graycode encoder on which the TP roll sits, the encoder is connected to an arduino with a wifi shield (may replace with something more powerful and easy to extend in the future as the plugins roll, like say a raspberry) which would tweet each time you take a shit, the amount of paper that you’ve used etc. etc.
My thread on the forum made the podcast. Cool.
The chip that really hurt me from TI closing GFAB6 was the LME49710 which came in SO8 and worked really well for microphones working +60KHz. It also had very low DC offset for a part of that class.
Eric Thompson (@eric_volt) says
Dave mentioned starting a vetted crowd funding site. I heard an interview of Joshua Lifton on Floss weekly about Crowd Supply. https://twit.tv/shows/floss-weekly/episodes/356?autostart=false
I don’t have any direct experience with Crowd Supply but listening to Joshua it sounds like that is what Crowd Supply is trying to do. They of course hosted the Novena laptop project.
Proposed name for Analog + Maxim merger: AnalMax. 🙂
john crowhurst says
Great show . maybe off-topic but- this Back to the Future thing, Now we are in the Future! well where is it? my flying Car? the Concorde 2.0 & around the world In 4hrs , holiday’s on the Moon Hotel? even divine Judgment is running late! if all else fails, get a Kickstarter for a prototype eternal battery! with electronics smaller than sand. did we lose it in the dustpan after cleaning the room! & yes i have lost parts after cleaning up 🙂
Rafael Souza says
Sorry, a bit late to catch up with AmpHour episodes… One comment: funny to hear Dave talk about how people are stupid in betting against the odds when going after a large company, while he is *ahem* smart in betting against the odds of the lottery. What happened to buying the dream, Dave? 🙂