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Thread: FrontierDash - WPF/C# Frontend in development

  1. #1
    Newbie OrangeSword's Avatar
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    FrontierDash - WPF/C# Frontend in development

    Some time ago after playing with a handheld OBD scanner I decided that creating a CarPC would be a worth hobby to take up. I am a software engineer by trade and these days at work I am developing in .net 3.0. To help further my education with the language, I have decided to program my CarPC software using C# and with a Windows Presentation Foundation driven GUI. Plus no one seems to be working on a WPF application for CarPCs at the moment. To that end this software is only expected to run on Windows XP with the .net 3.0 runtime installed or Windows Vista. I've named in FrontierDash for my 2000 Nissan Frontier which my CarPC will be installed in.

    This is a work in progress and I do not expect to be done with final product for some time. I have broken down the software into 6 modules.

    1. Audio Player
      • Interfaces with Windows Media Player Library classes
      • File Browser
    2. OBD Diagnostics
      • Interfaces with ODB Scantool (namely OBDPros)
      • Logs to local database
    3. GPS Navigation
    4. Telephone
    5. Web browser
      • Interfaces with 3G Cellphone via bluetooth
    6. Maintenance Scheduler / Mileage Calculations


    Currently I have been working on the Audio Player module. Here some screen shots of the work done so far.






    I believe that WPF allows for very robust theming/skinning so hopefully this will give the Frontend high visual customization. When I make a major milestone I will post an exe here so people a download it and try it out. Constructive criticism is always welcome. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Wow, that looks really nice even in its early stages!

    Definatley be keeping an eye on this with it being WPF based, I have much respect for the other frontend's out there but most have great features but are let down by poor visual appearance - with WPF you have the opportunity to make some sexy visuals for us to drool at

    I'm going to chuck a few ideas in here for things I feel make a good FE they may help you in some way ?!;

    • Browsing Albums by cover - like WMP11's cover view (much easier than text to see on the move!)
    • Single tape album loading - eg. Tap the album cover to play, tap and hold to get tracks seperatley
    • 'Jump to' buttons for music - eg. Buttons on music view for 'ABC' 'DEF' etc.. single tap of 'ABC' jumps to albums starting 'A', double tap 'B' etc. - Nobody wants to search 500+ albums by an arrow button
    • Telephone Signal / Battery / Status available to 'home' screen
    • Customisable 'sections' eg. I would never use the Web browser so would like to turn that off completely so it didn't appear in the FE.


    Look forward to seeing more of this FE develop! hopefully it won't die premeturely like so many others before it

    If you need any testing done under Vista or XP just shout!

  3. #3
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    I am a php programmer and a graphic artist. I am SLOWLY learning wpx/xaml stuff. If I can help with graphics, let me know. Other people in this forum may not know it, but WPF is nextgen.....

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    Is this still an active project? I'd love to have a simple front end that does just a few things (music, gps, phone) and does them well. WPF seems like a great foundation for a CarPC front end.

  5. #5
    Newbie OrangeSword's Avatar
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    Yes, it is still active. I've just been busy with work related projects.

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    Glad to hear it. I know how that goes.

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    it is still active ?
    some weeks ago i started to program also a carpc frontend with wpf.
    im using visual studio 2008 and expression blend 2.

    background ist TT, because its for my Audi TT

    with .net, you can
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  8. #8
    Newbie OrangeSword's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Admiraliss View Post
    it is still active ?
    some weeks ago i started to program also a carpc frontend with wpf.
    im using visual studio 2008 and expression blend 2.

    background ist TT, because its for my Audi TT

    with .net, you can
    Yeah its still active, but I still have a heavy work load these days. Good to see someone else is using WPF to this.

  9. #9
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    Hi there
    I'm IT-engineer from Denmark and I was planing starting my CarPC using C# .NET 3.0 or 3.5 usgin WPF and this one should use BDA drivers too. But instead we all work on different project, why not make one gooood one together?
    We could have a FTP server with CVS so we have a foundation and can work in branches so we do not overwrite code or we could split the jobs and have one to put it all together.
    Just an idea ...Im good with Windows programming (BDA drivers, shell etc.).

    Best regards
    Kenneth

    Quote Originally Posted by OrangeSword View Post
    Yeah its still active, but I still have a heavy work load these days. Good to see someone else is using WPF to this.

  10. #10
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    I would be all up for working on this as well. Maybe you can use SourceForge for hosting the project.

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