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Thread: Microsoft Surface Tablets

  1. #1
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    Microsoft Surface Tablets

    Lots of good info here:


    Looks like a possible iPad killer for carPC use. The 8 Pro version uses core i5, USB 3.0, HDMI, and the same software as laptops running Windows 8.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bblitz View Post
    Lots of good info here:


    Looks like a possible iPad killer for carPC use. The 8 Pro version uses core i5, USB 3.0, HDMI, and the same software as laptops running Windows 8.
    Please tell us you are kidding.


    Win 8 is going to be a non starter with its inability to boot to the desktop, where a front end would reside.

    I was one of those that tried to push Win7 as an alternative when it came out, and to this day there are still RR plugins (if you choose RR) that do not play nice,

    When you can find someone to write a complete metro app (oops, Win 8 style app) that gets the job done then you can talk about Win 8, until then, build your own with the new mini-itx motherboards that support 6G Sata and USB3 and get a good SSD (6G Sata of course, also called Sata 3, WTF?) and intall Win XP on it for the greatest functionality, Win 7 will buy you speed in exchange for no speech recognition and making sure you have the EXACT drivers that function.


    Better yet, don't bother. You will thank me after having some time in your life!
    TruckPC - gutted, being used for test setup
    BoatPC - All in 1 in cuddy, N7 using VNC on dash, RR
    BlazerPC - Nexus 7 with Timur's USBROM

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    Carpc on desktop is dead. As far as metro goes, you could probably get creative and use it as the front end itself. Haven't looked into the metro api myself, but I don't believe it's locked down to where you can't run some custom code to create status bars and music controls overlaid on top of and bottom of the metro tiles. Everything else is easily accomplished by using individual metro apps.

    But yea, you'd be pretty stupid to start a new carpc project based on a desktop computer these days. 5 years ago, yea as it was in its prime. Now? On it's last leg.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan711 View Post
    Carpc on desktop is dead. As far as metro goes, you could probably get creative and use it as the front end itself. Haven't looked into the metro api myself, but I don't believe it's locked down to where you can't run some custom code to create status bars and music controls overlaid on top of and bottom of the metro tiles. Everything else is easily accomplished by using individual metro apps.

    But yea, you'd be pretty stupid to start a new carpc project based on a desktop computer these days. 5 years ago, yea as it was in its prime. Now? On it's last leg.
    I don't understand why you're saying x86-based CarPCs are a non-starter these days... Gives you the most flexibility, hands-down. Plus you can do fun stuff, like record video via cheap webcams, have it function as your car alarm, remote start, etc. So much software exists already, and I haven't found a decent front-end for Android yet.

    For me, anything but Windows is a no-go, because I have to run a custom piece of software that can control my HVAC system. Unless there is a modular front-end for Android that I could build a module for, it seems like that would be impossible.


    Now, the real question is, go for the RT version for $199 in October, or wait for the Pro which will cost closer to $800-$1000? I think RT might be a better choice for the car environment, but the lack of software might make that hard.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan711 View Post
    Carpc on desktop is dead.
    It is and it isn't....for many people starting a carPC project today, I think that Android offers an easy in-road in an interface and application ecosystem that's designed for touch from the get-go. For many, the fact you can't find a fully integrated front-end for in-car is a moot point, when you can easily customize the home screen with a few shortcuts to the most popular apps for in-car use (music, nav, etc.). That, and the price of admission for a great piece of kit that includes a first-class screen and a great computer is currently hovering around $200...

    ...that being said, for some people desiring a more hardware-integrated, specialized experience offering things like HVAC and security integration, etc., x86 is the only way to go. It is still the most flexible in terms of application and interface, but to get that sort of complexity requires a lot of effort and cost. Start talking about custom resolutions for 800x480, complicated in-car power supplies and shutdown procedures, trunk-mounted PCs and ducting for cooling fans, and routing vga cables, for example, and you're gonna get a lot of yawns and weird looks from the android crowd. In general, these endeavors are of a complexity that most folks will simply forgo them for the simplicity and cost savings offered by android. That, and android continues to make progress and gain developer support. The argument is only slightly muddied when a Windows machine debuts at a similar price point and form factor...but that machine lacks apps, unless you go for the $800 pro version...and you're back to square one.

    So, I think we'll continue to see a lot of "My android cost me X dollars and does everything I need it to, and is the way of the future" arguments, with the retort, "but my x86 can do x, y, and z, and your android can't."...but with the landscape of potential users and profitability for app writers and equipment re-sellers, I think you're going to see that customization and application barrier between the two shrinking and shrinking.
    Last edited by hithere; 09-02-2012 at 12:05 PM.
    I have too much time and too little aggravation in my life, so I built a carPC. ;)

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    Actually I am designing a setup that will mix OS's. For the most flexible install you REALLY need a PC based computer in your vehicle. Linux, Mac and Android just are no where near as mature as PC's for this application.

    Win XP is used in MANY Process controllers at this time because of its stability. However Win7 has progressed enough to seriously consider especially if you have recent software and a constant internet connection. Older XP software is no longer supported and is very unsecure if you are connected at all to the internet. Win8 MAY be a good choice for this in a year or so once it has matured. But I would NOT use it now. I am expecting it to be the new WinME... (If you are telling yourself WTF is WinME... That's the point...)

    An x86 based PC is a very poor choice for a car security system due to the power it eats up. If you wish to build your own in car security system you will want to use a low energy dedicated PC for this use. For my system I will be incorporating at least one low energy ARM board to do security and convenience with its own 7" screen in the over head console. It will have an energy sipping power off mode (with Lithium Ion backup battery) and a mode that will allow a few other features with the vehicle running including the touch screen. I will be installing an i7 processor based PC for my normal "vehicle on" stuff.

    I am going to school to become a Computer Programmer and Computer Security specialist so I am developing this as an integrated system using OM as the backbone for it. Will start out with Linux on the ARM processor and Win7 on the i7 but as I get more used to the software I will likely move the security/convenience to Android.

    I mention this hear as an idea.. Not as an advertisement for my system since my system consists of a very small PC board with a touch screen on order and no time to get it to work yet.

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    Sure you have ability to boot to desktop on Win8. The more interesting thing is the CPU resources. You can run Win8 on low cpu speeds.
    I think Win8 is going to be the best platform for CarPc owners for the near future.

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    I think Android is the way of the future but x86 PC is certainly not dead yet. RR development is still constantly ongoing as well as other front ends from various developers. Sure its not the only option anymore, so newcomers may just pick android for simplicity. I just think the 'Android route' is too simple to the point that no modification is needed at all (although it would not be neat, it would be perfectly functional). The 'fun' in carPC building is tackling a project that isn't a 'follow the instructions' type of deal. It is engineering your own system and customizing it to your needs.

    Of course people have done interesting things with Android that definitely took some effort, but I just thought its worth thinking about. I look forward to the future as more awesome technology gets put into cars by the everyday person. Anything is better than the junk that manufacturers stuff in there!!
    "It's not worth having if you can't customize it"

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