W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > whatwg@whatwg.org > December 2010

[whatwg] Bluetooth devices

From: Bjartur Thorlacius <svartman95@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 26 Dec 2010 18:12:58 +0000
Message-ID: <AANLkTi=On7EmV5k9c5-su8DYMQqBt10YdwG15oK65PAD@mail.gmail.com>
On 12/20/10, Stephen Bannasch <stephen.bannasch at deanbrook.org> wrote:
> I've been creating educational science applications which let users collect,
> analyze and share data from probes and sensors. It is a huge plus to be able
> to deliver this type of application and educational learning experience in a
> browser.
>
How so?

> For quite a while we've been deploying these activities/applications using
> Java Web Start.
>
> The code is open source and works with probeware interfaces from five
> different commercial vendors.
>
> However there are many problems deploying Java Web Start applications in
> schools and I'd rather deploy to an application running directly in the
> browser.
>
What problems do you face when deploying Java Web Start applications?
A former school of mine forbade teachers from deploying software for lack
of robust package management. The solution to that problem would be
improved package management, not masquerading applications as web
pages.

> In addition much of our current research is in exploring the learning
> benefits associated with collaboration -- this is much easier to prototype
> and scale-up using web technologies.
>
> Recently I've been able to create a demonstration in a browser that graphs
> data from a Vernier GoMotion USB probe (measuresdistance using and
> ultrasonic ranging device).
>
> If you have a Vernier GoMotion probe plugged in you can just open this page:
>
>  http://jnlp.dev.concord.org/goio-motion-graph.html
>
> and be graphing data from it within 30s.
>
> If you don't have this probe here's a screencast showing it working:
>
>   http://screencast.com/t/7mmYpknbgoSz
>
> The current implementation uses a Java applet which also includes os and
> arch-specific native libraries (totalling about 500k).
>
If I understand you correctly, your applet is OS and arch-dependant, and
depends on a JRE and a web browser. Why not just use the JRE?

> Almost all probeware requires a user to install a driver ... however the
> Vernier GoIO series of probeware interfaces do *not* require installation of
> a kernel driver because the devices register themselves as USB HID devices.
>
> the result is that opening and using the Motion Grapher page does *not*
> require a user to install a driver into the OS -- whichmeans that this can
> normally be run in a school without requiring a user to authenticate as an
> administrator. This is ahuge plus.
>
> Recently I've had interest in extending this system to support Aurduino
> devices.
>
> I'm also interested in having access to BlueTooth sensors so I could create
> a similar experience for systems like IOS and Android which often don't have
> a USB interface.
>
The OS will abstract protocols like Bluetooth and USB from your app and provide
you with the desired data.

> The <device> spec is hardly a spec at all ... really just a placeholder for
> conversations like this and I haven't yetthought much about how it could be
> built to better support these goals.
>
> But I think I can make a powerful case that being able to create
> web-applications that can integrate easily with I/O devices that extend your
> senses is a wonderful area for innovation.
>
Received on Sunday, 26 December 2010 10:12:58 UTC

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