View Poll Results: What do you think

59. You may not vote on this poll
  • The future is in smart phones

    6 10.17%
  • The future is in carputers

    18 30.51%
  • My carputer causes me more trouble than fun, so my future is in my phone

    3 5.08%
  • I love my carputer and I dont care what the future holds...

    24 40.68%
  • The future is in tablets

    3 5.08%
  • Other - not listed above

    5 8.47%
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Thread: What's the point to this carputer thing anyway...?

  1. #71
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    justchat_1's Avatar
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    Jul 2008
    Boston, Ma or NY,NY
    It seems like the main problem here is inexperience....users want the ability to "roll their own" setup but don't really have the skill set to pull it off. Hardware is only half of the challenge here, as some of you may know the microsoft auto operating system is used by half a dozen manufacturers and almost all of the aftermarket nav systems. They never crash, never need updates, never have driver conflicts (although expandable devices are starting to have issue in that department). Running a vanilla windows xp install with no vehicle specific customization is never going to run as well as a properly designed setup.

    A good windows embedded install and a well designed operating system will give consistent, reliable, fast performance day after day. It seems like some of you guys may just want a fully configured double din carpc thats just connect, go and use but still allows for some tinkering.

  2. #72
    Constant Bitrate firstorbit84's Avatar
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    Mar 2009
    I'd like to say that my Asus Eee PC runs XP off of a 4GB SSD, which isn't really fast by FAST HDD standards, but it certainly isn't the slowest disk I've used, even in the past few years...

    edit: My front end software (Centrafuse) runs off the built-in 4GB SSD as well, and the maps in iGuidance are stored on a 4GB SD card in the card reader slot... all of my media runs off of an 8GB MicroSD through a USB MicroSD reader connected to a USB hub... I've never had problems with skipping or slowness, and I don't have to worry about hard drive crashes when I hit bumps in the road, or excess heat from traditional hard drives... best of both worlds.

    And for updating, I'm with ZX1 in that I haven't had to update anything since I got my setup running in November. I don't even know why you'd have to update if everything is working properly.

    Back to topic: I also agree that CarPCs fill a niche that the smartest of smart phones will never quite fill, as long as they're still a good phone first, and whatever else you want it to do second.

  3. #73
    Constant Bitrate simplex's Avatar
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    Oct 2009
    Budapest, Hungary
    Quote Originally Posted by Bugbyte View Post
    I guess I'm surprised that most people think that future smart devices won't be able to connect to large screens and that all of your data and configuration information will be on a single device in a single location and that those devices will continue to be so difficult to configure that you can't afford to lose it.
    I didn't say anything about losing data or config. I simply can't afford to lose a $500 device.

    Also, if you can connect a screen to the phone, then what's the point in the smartphone?
    Look at the costs:

    Expensive smartphone+screen vs. Cheap phone+carPC+screen.

    Do not forget, most of us still using simple, primitive phones, only for calls, SMS, and as an alarm clock.
    When I'm not in my car, I simply don't need a GPS, and I don't need a smartphone for a TODO list.
    Once it looked useful to have Excel on phone, but now my work don't recommend it.
    Check my worklog:
    Corsa + Atom + Gentoo Linux + 9" capacitive touchscreen

    Lord of the boards: DFI CP100-NRM

    "Or you can try Ubuntu, but than don't tell everyone you are using linux,
    because it's just a secret unreleased prebeta of Windows 3829" :P

  4. #74
    Constant Bitrate simplex's Avatar
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    Oct 2009
    Budapest, Hungary
    Quote Originally Posted by ThunderStick View Post
    Most SSD hard drives dont support WinXP or win XP doesnt support them because they are too slow to run an operating system as such. Read the fine print for these drives they are the equivalent to an SD card as far as speed goes, sometimes slower.
    Tried this and definitely dont reccomend it. That is if you like performance.
    Most SD cards in a phone are for storage. ROM is used for OS, which is definitely more streamlined than and HD or SSD on the market.
    Maybe because XP is 8 years old. Use windows 7.
    Or linux (Moblin or TuxOnICE if you don't want to mess a lot with it).
    Check my worklog:
    Corsa + Atom + Gentoo Linux + 9" capacitive touchscreen

    Lord of the boards: DFI CP100-NRM

    "Or you can try Ubuntu, but than don't tell everyone you are using linux,
    because it's just a secret unreleased prebeta of Windows 3829" :P

  5. #75
    Variable Bitrate mayhembdm666's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Adelaide, Australia
    First i would like to say,,, I rarely update windows from a fresh install unless i have a reason.. A lot of updates fix issues or bugs that can be manually fixed and then ghosted to a spare hdd for which ever purpose.

    As for phones with a docking/breakout cable. This is means you once again are using the phone as a computer and not just a phone. Consider the size of the new boards that are smaller then the pico.. cant think of the name.. They have a single breakout cable and no onboard ports... These are the same size and speed that the latest phones use... hence you can build yourself a phone in a year or so when they hit the cheaper market.

    While alot of people still simply connect their laptop/xbox/mini or other device to the peripherals in their car... this is the same that is done for a phone... Hence i am now starting to see the phone integration as being a carpc... The phone after all is a personal computer right?

    The one feature i love about having a x86 based carpc... Its installed and stays installed,, this means no dirty plugs... No cables or docking stations. Just turn the car on and it is there always.. As for using the phone with the carpc... thats why we have bluetooth sensing... just leave your bluetooth on you phone and when in the car and a call comes through.. You have the choice of how to answer it.

    I think im repeating points here.. sorry people, just home from a new job and energy is buzzing but the mind aint. Anyone who has a desktop pc for their own needs loves to customize it and give it a personal look and feel. Phones to me dont quiet have that ability just yet.. Yes by using the same front end this makes most systems the same... But only software wise... Its rare to see the same two setups of hardware in a car.. Yes with phone installs your buying a limited range of pre-mad accesories and are bound to have a similar setup to someone else.

    Of course this will change over time,,, But then comes down to if your going to make your own docking station, Mold it into your dash and so on...

    Personally i think it will be a battle for many years to come, Just like the mac/ibm - desktop/laptop - pc/console.... i had other points but lost themm...
    2004 Holden WL Caprice Auto GENIII
    Base System = Raspberry Pi
    Everything else is pending for now as switched from a Mini-ITX setup

  6. #76
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Apr 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by justchat_1 View Post
    How do you pull down a notifications shade to view a text while traveling at 80mph safely?
    It's not like you could read a text message on your PC (or an email or IM) safely at 80mph, either.
    This is another area where law is stepping in to keep people safe from their own stupidity.

    I'm not going to say I'm above this, because I have read emails while driving, as well.
    I'm just saying it's not safe for anyone to read texts, emails, IMs, or anything but a roadsign while driving.

    Quote Originally Posted by fixinstuff View Post
    Its been a long time since I have posted here or even read anything but this one really caught my eye.

    The idea of a computer in my vehicle that does what I want is attractive but over the years I have started straying away from the idea. I guess what it comes down to is sitting in my truck for an hour while windows updates, or drivers load for different devices just isnt worth the effort.
    Driver installation should be done before it goes into the car. I'm not getting this.
    As for Windows updates, I can see not wanting that wait.
    However, you can also download updates, put them on a flash drive and update them manually, too.

    As I drive to work I get more and more frustrated with the computer and want to rip it out. Different popups or errors, slow boot time etc.

    I can pull my phone out plug it in and get instant always on access to music, maps etc.

    Someone made the point that there are various after market systems that are technically considered carpc, but as a hobbyist Im just not seeing the satifaction of my own product working or meeting the standards of my phone or those aftermarket systems.

    At this point in the hobby I hoped to have a stable, functional system that does what I want. I have it. I carry it in my pocket.

    Now I just have to find the time to restore my truck to factory or find an after market system I can be happy with.
    You're not a vehicle computing hobbyist, then. That's not a bad thing, but let's be honest if we're applying labels.

    This hobby is about putting a PC into a vehicle, regardless of purpose.
    A smartphone isn't a PC.
    Even the almighty Droid (or other Android-based phones) aren't a PC, although they are getting damn close.

    As far as I'm concerned the in-dash all-in-one headunits w/ touchscreen aren't PCs.

    In my mind, a PC has a level of customizability and expansion capability. Even with Windoze, it's open enough that you can make it look, feel and behave the way you want. You're extremely limited with a pocket device or even the best headunits.
    Even Ford's new MySync is locked down to be idiot-proof.

    That's the problem with phones and headunits that are viewed as "PC killers", especially in the vehicle arena. They have to be locked down to prevent Joe Idiot from screwing things up.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?

    Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

  7. #77
    Variable Bitrate mayhembdm666's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Adelaide, Australia
    Here in australia the main law about a screen in the car is that it has to not show distracting/moving pictures while the car is in motion. Hence the double din units need a wire hooked to the handbrake to make sure that when the handbrake aint applied you can not view the movies. But still allows audio.

    I have spoken with the motor reg people up here in the NT and they have advised as long as i follow these same guide lines there will be no issue. They can not comment on things like speech to text while driving as it is kinda classed the same has a hands free unit.. Audio stream which can distract but is not yet against the law.

    So if i happen to ever deal with a nasty copper which the NT has some of the best of the worst.. I can have that held up in court due to my regular checks with the motor reg department.

    I have also downloaded a complete copy of their "Car Modifications" guidelines/rules book which has nothing at all stating about these sort of setups. With the movie feature.. Im simply have a hidden key combination in my front end which overrides the handbrake safety... I know its not smart... But when i am driving.. I put a movie or tv show on and listen to it as i have seen it 100's of times before... I dont watch the screen while driving except for the one week i drove around abit using a front cam to judge distances and over all setup... But that was in a common sense of empty open roads during daylight.

    My advice with the currently changing laws on these sort of setups is to contact and make a good internal contact with your local motor reg. This can not only save your ***, But give you a guide line on how to build your setup by the law.
    2004 Holden WL Caprice Auto GENIII
    Base System = Raspberry Pi
    Everything else is pending for now as switched from a Mini-ITX setup

  8. #78
    Variable Bitrate Wayne613's Avatar
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    Apr 2009
    Quote Originally Posted by justchat_1 View Post
    Leave the politics at home....especially when they in no way relate to the thread.
    Perhaps you should read further then. It's not politics, it's fact. And it relates plenty to the topic at hand. An arguement was given that phones unlike carpc's have another strike against them because they have current laws in effect against them. That's only momentary, and will change by the look of it quite quickly.

    Perhaps you should also read my first paragraph again before trying to slap me on the wrist.

    2008 Ford Mustang GT/CS CARPC(99%)
    Software: Ride/Road-Runner, Digital FX skin 5.x, iGuidance 2011, GPSgate on Win7 64bit

  9. #79
    One Sharp Cheddar ThunderStick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    West Allis, WI
    OK, I got it.
    Of course if you have the best of everything; your carputer will probably work pretty good. And of course if you have a windows embedded OS running on your carpc your OS will be pretty stable (how many of you are actually capable of this?). And of course if you shelled out the money for a wireless network card and wireless service for your carpc then yes your connectivity is pretty good. And yes if some how you tether your phone to your carpc you may be able to receive and dial calls.
    My main point to this thread is, if you have a smart phone it replaces all the needs mentioned above for a fraction of the cost. Service on my phone cost $90 month with unlimited android service with a family plan. The phone itself cost me $100.
    There is no decent carpc setup that costs anyone less than that. The idea that it is cheaper to install a carpc in your car than use your smart phone has been contradicted by everyone that has opposed the idea of using your smart phone instead of a carpc.
    All the reasons given cost a lot of money, SSD hard drives are not cheap (they may cost as much as or more than a smart phone alone), CarPC PSU's for a good one start about $100.00. Then if you complained about storage space on the SD card of your smart phone, tack on another $100 for large hard drive for your carpc. Oh yeah Over $500 for a sunlight readable screen or pick one out for about $200 that you can't see in the sunlight and then later decide to buy the one for $500 or more because your unreadable screen frustrates you. Your choice.
    Then let's try to make it look OEM. Unless your a good fabricator (most are not), prepare to shell out some serious doe to someone willing to hack up your car for you or to fix up your hack job that you did yourself.
    If you say time is money, develop your system and get one of those punch clocks and see how much time you tack on to just planning. Then figure that at your current pay rate from your job(if you have one). Is it money well spent. Maybe you consider it an entertainment value to spend thousands to reach a goal that very few have accomplished.
    It has been explained many times before "if you are getting in to the carpc hobby to save money, get out now while you can because it is not cheap".
    I am not detering anyone from developing, I think it is great. I am just making a point, cheaper is not the case when it comes to carpc's, easy is not the point, stability (able to use daily despite any condition) is the point but rarely gets there and a cost saving way to add media to your car (definitely not the point anymore, but this is why most started hance the name mp3car).
    Carpc developing has come a long way, but until it is marketable as an aftermarket device I don't think it is considered as good as everyone hopes it will be.
    New Age Garmin - Skin for RR
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    "It's called CODE because I don't want you to know"

  10. #80
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    a phone is a good supplement to a carpc, may be an adequate substitute for some even, but there is no way a phone can truly take the place of a GOOD carpc. that's the same as saying that a GOOD car audio system can be replaced with an Ipod & headphones, they both play music & they both sound good, but one is only a suitable replacement for the other if your willing to settle & compromise

    carpc's are not about settling, there about trying to build what you ultimately want from your car & is def not for everybody. if someone decides to settle for a fan on there dash instead of an A/C system then that is there choice, if someone is willing to settle for taking the bus instead of buying a car that is there choice, if someone is willing to settle for something that is easier & cheaper than something that is better but harder & more expensive then that is there choice too. no one NEEDS a carpc, a carpc is not about needs but it's about wants, about not settling & trying to build something that may someday be better than anything you could have bought. a pocket device like a phone can not replace that no more than a prius can replace a supra, although it's fine if someone wants to settle for the prius too, a carpc is ALL about what it is YOU want from YOUR car & how much time effort & energy your willing to dedicate & waste towards that goal... it's def not for everyone & it's also DEF not the best solution to just have a media player... if you think of a carpc as a media player alone then your missing the whole point & a carpc is probably not for you

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