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Thread: Help Bugbyte kill his car PC with an iTouch/iPhone install

  1. #151
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    Bugbyte's Avatar
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    I received the bluetooth touchscreen from Dealextreme today. It is intended for the EEEPC 1000


    It has a controller that plugs into a USB port inside the computer. I presume that I can plug it into a USB port on a regular PC but need some kind of controller for it. The one it ships with works for XP only, I think.

    Anyone got any ideas whether/where I can find an alternate driver for it (maybe Linux)?
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

  2. #152
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    I would love to be able to do this as well. I don't see the point of that linux pc, it doesn't even have vga or ps2 ports. So what are you going to do with it?
    I want to switch over to the itouch/iphone as well so hopefully you will get it figure out.

  3. #153
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    An explanation for why a 'helper' PC

    The point of the linux PC is that the iPhone DOES NOT connect to external stuff like a relay board. Or an XM Direct. Or an OBDII.

    Question: How would you connect you iPhone to these devices?

    Answer: You can't.

    End of story.

    So - you have the iPhone, which has a lot of internal capability but at the end of the day is still an iPhone with no way to interface with the external world.

    What if you wanted to remote control your car with it? Auto-start? Roll windows up and down? Control the HVAC?

    There's really only one solution - you'll have to connect wirelessly with the hardware devices you want to control. If you want to control relays, you'll need a relay board with WiFi built in.

    If you want to read OBDII, you'll need an OBDII cable with WiFi built in.

    If you want to control an XM Direct, you'll need an XM Direct with WiFi built in.


    This is a lot of cash plus, except for the Rev product with OBDII WiFi, these products don't exist.

    The only way I can think of to interface with external devices is to use another computer. But I don't want to break the bank installing a computer system. If I do that, I might as well settle for the existing system I already have in the car and discard the iPhone.

    The Sheeva plug represents an inexpensive ($99) embedded computer system that I can control from the iPhone if I connect it to an old router I already have. I don't need a display - I need it to control my hardware. Relays, XM Direct, OBDII and so forth.

    Since there are Linux solutions for these devices, I don't see why I can't run the hardware I already own off of a cheap 'helper' PC and access all of that data from the iPhone as if it were out there on the web somewhere.

    If I'm missing something as far as a solution for controlling external stuff with the iPhone is concerned, somebody clue me in. I'd appreciate it.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

  4. #154
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    That would be so cool if you can roll up/down windows with the itouch. For me I would just use the itouch for music. Not really into the other stuff.
    Good luck!

  5. #155
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    Well, the iPhone interface is really not very suitable for in car use. It's a way small screen that you have to look at to operate. Not good for driving at all.

    What you really want is a way to either touch on a larger screen or use a Griffin Powermate controller to operate a custom frontend app.

    I've already figured out video and audio. That only take $49 for the Apple iPod Video cable and a jailbroken iPod running Screenspliter or TVOut. Fairly straightforward. It's the other stuff that is more difficult.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

  6. #156
    Sheepdog rdholtz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bugbyte View Post
    The only way I can think of to interface with external devices is to use another computer. But I don't want to break the bank installing a computer system. If I do that, I might as well settle for the existing system I already have in the car and discard the iPhone.
    While the original point of your effort was to use the iPhone to replace the carPC, you've seen a brick wall and, instead of abandoning the project, simply modified the approach -- temporarily. You're taking the tools available and moving ahead.

    But even if you were starting with no system in your car, you won't spend so much more on a complete PC system that you'd break the bank and have to "discard the iPhone."

    Cheap Server vs PC
    That $99 SheevaPlug is really nifty. It trumps an XP unit in size and cost, but they still aren't miles apart. A comparable, but more powerful, PC based on the Atom chip is only $80 (board) + $25 (memory). Add a 4GB USB stick ($25), and buy somebody's old dead PC for the XP license on the case ($20?). The result is a fairly powerful system that will run Windows XP, for $50 more than the SheevaPlug. If we spring for a nifty case and a nice hard drive, we still only have $300 in it.

    The XP system needs clean 12V power, and the SheevaPlug needs clean 5V power, so we'll end up spending money on a PSU. Let's go overboard and use an M2-ATX ( $75) to power the PC or server plus the screen. And let's add an 8-inch Lilliput 889GL LED-backlit touchscreen ($220).

    Then add an iPhone. Depending on the iPhone cost, the total is $1000 or so for the PC and $800 or so for the SheevaPlug system. When we get done, the XP system is maybe $200 more than the SheevaPlug system. That's not going to break the bank.

    The XP system is a better deal for me because I know next to nothing about Linux; I really don't want to climb that learning curve, and will pay the extra $200 to avoid it.

    The iPhone Makes the Difference
    Either way, the iPhone opens up a new realm of possibilities; its capacity keeps moving ahead, and software vendors rush to write programs and utilities that take advantage of it. Apple's leading the pack, profiting handsomely, and building the best brand name in the business.

    ". . . and discard the iPhone"? Absolutely not. That's where the majority of us will be headed, soon. You're in front of the pack, and we're playing catchup. We may not all follow you down the Linux path, but we'll be tracking parallel with PCs. Maybe you can lead the way to using only the iPhone.

    No matter how we use it, the iPhone is a stunning but incomplete work of conceptualization, engineering, design and marketing. I appreciate its capabilities, moan at its shortcomings, and decided to use it because it's the best in its class and improving faster than anything like it. (I'll get mine as soon as the new version comes out.)

    Paradigm Shift
    I suspect the iPhone is a paradigm shift similar to the advent of aviation in this country. When airlines started to grow, the railroads still acted as if they were in the railroad business, the trucking companies still acted like they were in the trucking business, and bus lines still acted like they were in the bus business. They all ignored airplanes, even as evidence mounted that their business models were in danger. But the airlines didn't act like they were in the airline business. They shifted the paradigm, decided they weren't so limited, and went into the "transportation" business. They took huge chunks of business from rails and trucks and buses. Railroads and bus lines have never recovered.

    Most phone manufacturers -- and their software-providing partners -- still act like they're in the communications business. Apple thinks it's in a much broader business, and has moved beyond being a fancy phone to being a "lifestyle support system" or something like that. Despite the fact that I don't have a good name for where they're headed, that's a paradigm shift. The Apple market share numbers indicate consumers think so, too.

    For now, whether I run a Linux SheevaPlug or an XP PC in my car, I want the iPhone to be its playmate.
    .
    If just enough is really good, then too much ought to be perfect.

    2006 Scion xB with in-dash Atom & Lilliput 889GL -- Worklog at http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/work...res-links.html
    .

  7. #157
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    New Apple A/V Cable coming out..... What does this mean for us?

    http://i.gizmodo.com/5219803/retaile...apple-iphonetv

  8. #158
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    nothing.

  9. #159
    Mac Car Moderator kandyman676's Avatar
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    Read up on this thread. It has been several years since my last CarPC, but been eyeing the scene for too many years :-)

    Great work Bugbyte for pioneering this venture! I heavily agree that the iPhone (in due time) will REPLACE our CarPCs. We are in a point now in technology where everything is becoming more integrated, smaller, smarter, and faster. The iPhone is a Darwin port like Mac OS X, severally stripped down. read up here:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPhone_OS

    The june "refresh" of the iPhone will make it nearly a netbook between processing power, memory, speed, and functionality. External screen, touchscreen control (or even a trackpad..hint hint), and dockable to the two is the real key. It would *not* surprise me someone comes out with a special dock to make your iphone into a mini desktop computer....everything is there, its a mater of interfacing it.

    Key items for the OS include:
    • Peer to peer network via Bluetooth
    • Control of the device via Apple's API (seems to be the ipod to device, not the other way around...but only a matter of time to reverse hack)
    • Turn by turn (big upgrade for GPS/nav)
    • Access your music from applications (at least this starts to get around to playing your music at the same time your nav is running)
    Source: http://gizmodo.com/5171796/iphone-30...u-need-to-know

    Another LARGE thing to consider is Android from Google..its also is making some steam, but not as much as iPhone/iTouch. The biggest thing about its OS is that some overseas manufactures, HP, and Dell are starting to tinker with the OS running on netbooks/tablets...
    http://www.computerworld.com/action/...icleId=9132109

    Thus it could be the perfect candidate for your "dock" OS for a reduced footprint.


    I may throw my hat into the ring in June when this new phone is out. Been considering it for a year, just finances have been tight and got some extra $$'s from selling some of my unused stuff to stockpile for the next car integration.
    "If it works this good why F with it?" -KMFDM "Intro"

    Strive for ethical wardriving: http://faq.wardrive.net/

    My CarCPUs: v1 - 2000 | v2 - 2004
    Mp3Car Meets: http://detrimental.org/eyecandy/MP3CarMeets

  10. #160
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    Thanks, Kandyman. I'm even more sure of this as time goes by. Right now, not all of the pieces are in place, but I expect that the 3.0 software release will expand the solution space. If you get the cash, we'd love to have you join in on the fun. As a group, I think we can probably get to some solutions.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

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