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Ben Heck Uses Google's ADK to Mod Baby Car Seat Motion Simulator

Tue, 08/23/2011 - 6:01am

Ben Heck In the latest episode of the “The Ben Heck Show,” sponsored by element14, the first collaborative community and electronics store for design engineers and electronics enthusiasts, modding guru Ben Heck employs Google’s Android Open Accessory Development Kit (ADK) to fulfill a viewer’s request to create a baby car seat that simulates the calming motion of riding in a car. The kit’s Open Accessory standard allows enthusiasts and developers alike to build accessories that can interact with an assortment of Android-powered devices.

“Smartphones are chock-full of applications and capabilities, but few users actually get the chance to unleash their full potential – using software development to go beyond in-phone applications,” said Ben. “The car seat motion simulator is a great way to showcase how creative integration with the ADK can perform real world tasks – in this case, calming a fussy baby without emptying your gas tank!”

Ben walks viewers through the preliminary steps of loading the ADK software and code onto his computer and smartphone. Once programming is completed, a quick how-to and demo of the platform’s I/O functionality prompts Ben to put his new gadgets to work as he recruits programmer and friend Chris Kraft to create an Android application that senses car motion using an accelerometer. After a cruise around the block to collect motion data with his smartphone, Ben uses the ADK to build a mock-up of his simulator design to test servos that will simulate car motions for the car seat.

“Ben’s latest quest gives viewers a glimpse at the design power of Open Source technology and collaboration,” said Kevin Yapp, chief marketing officer, Premier Farnell. “Modders, developers and even parents will enjoy watching Ben turn a piece of technology into something that has practical, real world applications.”

Fans of the show are invited to join the element14 community to send Ben a challenge for a future build, engage with community members, and enter for a chance to win one of Ben’s builds.

“The Ben Heck Show”

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