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Imagination Technologies leverages kickstarter for IoT kit launch By Julien Happich Following up on its previous open source hardware initiative with the MIPS Creator CI20 microcomputer in December last year, Imagination is now launching the Creator Ci40 development board, this time through crowdfunding site Kickstarter. Presented as the ‘IoT in a box’ kit on kickstarter, the Creator Ci40 IoT hub board will be packed together with click-on peripheral modules for added functionality, but also software building blocks, open source software frameworks, the network stacks and the cloud connectivity capabilities required to securely connect and authenticate devices to the cloud. The board has been designed around a brand new 550MHz dual-core, dual-threaded MIPS CPU produced on GlobalFoundries’ 40nm low power process node. It runs OpenWrt and a multi-standard connectivity package (802.11 ac, Bluetooth, 802.15.4, fast Ethernet), with room for further expansion. It also features a number of peripheral I/Os, including a mikroBUS socket and a Raspberry Pi pin-compatible interface. The kit comes with five Clicker boards from MikroElektronika, including two battery-powered boards with a dedicated 6LoWPAN chip and the mikroBUS socket for adding sensors, and three sensor boards for temperature, motion detection and for controlling a relay. All feature a dedicated MIPS-based PIC- 32MX microcontroller. This is only to start with, since hundreds of other Click boards are available from MikroElektronika. According to the Kickstarter campaign, starting a project is only a matter of stacking a Click board onto a battery-powered Clicker expansion board to obtain a standalone wireless device and program a connection with the Creator Ci40 IoT hub over the 6LoWPAN network. The processed sensor readings can then be sent out to the cloud through Imagination’s FlowCloud IoT framework for further analysis and reporting. While Imagination Technologies could well have launched this product on its own dollars, it opted for Kickstarter as a way to collect valuable feedback from the crowd-sourcing site’s wide community of developers, also leveraging Kickstarter’s marketing tools and surveying capabilities. Practically, this also enables the company to showcase the kit at a very competitive discounted price, though it is not clear whether the company would mull the project altogether should the kickstarter campaign prove unsuccessful. Redefining Automated Test with open software and modular hardware How we interact with devices is changing. As the world becomes more software oriented, what we can accomplish increases exponentially. This shift should apply to our test equipment, too. Unlike traditional instruments with predefined functionality, the NI automated test platform provides the latest technologies to build complex systems while reducing development time and cost. >> Accelerate your productivity at ni.com/automated-test-platform Austria 43 662 457990 0 n Belgium 32 (0) 2 757 0020 Czech Republic, Slovakia 420 224 235 774 n Denmark 45 45 76 26 00 Finland 358 (0) 9 725 72511 n France 33 (0) 8 20 20 0414 n Germany 49 89 7413130 Hungary 36 23 448 900 n Ireland 353 (0) 1867 4374 n Israel 972 3 6393737 Italy 39 02 41309277 n Netherlands 31 (0) 348 433 466 n Norway 47 (0) 66 90 76 60 Poland 48 22 328 90 10 n Portugal 351 210 311 210 n Russia 7 495 783 6851 Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia 386 3 425 42 00 Spain 34 (91) 640 0085 n Sweden 46 (0) 8 587 895 00 n Switzerland 41 56 2005151 UK 44 (0) 1635 517300 ©2015 National Instruments. All rights reserved. LabVIEW, National Instruments, NI and ni.com are trademarks of National Instruments. Other product and company names listed are trademarks or trade names of their respective companies. 23182 www.electronics-eetimes.com Electronic Engineering Times Europe December 2015 23


EETE DEC 2015
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