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Propeller loader for Android? — Parallax Forums

Propeller loader for Android?

Sometimes I need to send a firmware update out to a customer but it's always awkward not just because they don't have the loader software loaded on their laptops but also because of the various security policies and restrictions that are in place in many large organizations. What I would like to be able to do is have a standard Prop loader for Android on the Play Store that they can install on their phone/tablet, plug the Prop's USB port into the device and press a button labeled "FLASH FIRMWARE" or something to that effect. So the loader would be standard but the firmware file I would send directly to them.

Has anyone done anything like that?
Otherwise I may have to update my Android SDK and write an app to load P1 and P2s, or maybe I can adapt an existing app.

Comments

  • As much as I hate a smartphone/tablet thing I'd happily get one just for the purpose described above.
    I'm one of the victims of such, on the other hand good, restrictive rcompany security policies so I understand perfectly what they're forced to go thru.
    I'm not an arduino user but I've seen my friend doing the code uploads to his board with the Android phone so such applications exist for sure for that platform. I don't know if it already exists in the Propeller world.

  • This is a cool post, but my dyslexia / dementia (?) must be getting worse, because I excitedly opened it because at first I read the title as "Propeller loader for Asteroids"...

    But heck, with Wuerfel's VJET and a 6502 emulator, maybe an Asteroids for the P2 is achievable?!

    I wish I was smarter and had a time machine, so I could act on all these ideas.

    Apologies for the interruption and take care!

    -joe

  • It would be very neat if an android app for loading proppeller was available

  • MicksterMickster Posts: 1,857
    edited 2021-02-26 07:53

    Would be even cooler over Bluetooth.

    As I have harped-on many times, Android is what I use to communicate with MCUs as a user interface. Been doing it since 2012 and it's a great way to go.

    One example: A suspected prox failure at the back end of the machine. I take my mobile device to the area of interest, manually trigger the sensor and see if the signal shows up on the screen.

  • I will update my Android SDK and have a crack at a serial USB/Bluetooth loader for P1/P2 and obviously have some preset function buttons and a terminal screen. I did a Bluetooth terminal with large fonts for a tablet a few years ago simply as an operator display and interface, and for electrical safety.

  • In order to use serial on android you need a special cable and a driver that can talk to the FTDI or CP21 type serial chip on the other end.

    Bluetooth or WiFi is much easier to setup as you don't need any special driver and can just use the software interfaces already built-in.

    I found this repository with code that might help you. usb-serial-for-android

    Mike

  • MicksterMickster Posts: 1,857

    There is also the option of using an on-device language such as DroidScript or RFO BASIC (my preference).

    This would allow others to customise/modify without the JDK hassle.

  • @iseries said:
    In order to use serial on android you need a special cable and a driver that can talk to the FTDI or CP21 type serial chip on the other end.

    Bluetooth or WiFi is much easier to setup as you don't need any special driver and can just use the software interfaces already built-in.

    I found this repository with code that might help you. usb-serial-for-android

    Mike

    I use serial terminal on android for debugging.
    It is just a OTG adaptor cable, and then it works with the normal parallax programming plug or even one of those cheap chinese TTL UART boards.

    I hope someone has the knowledge and time to make an android app. It would be very nice to have

  • Peter JakackiPeter Jakacki Posts: 10,193
    edited 2021-02-26 23:56

    Yes, there are no special drivers needed on Android for FT232 and CP21xxx chips and I have used my phone with a serial cable to talk to (and program) Tachyon on my Props for many years now. The other way of course is via Bluetooth.

    I have updated my Android Studio and starting off testing some old projects I did. Maybe I might use one of these or write a fresh one for the Prop loader.

    btw, I ended up using proploader.exe wth a small .bat file that I zipped up with the binary for my customer. However gmail doesn't allow zip files so I have to share a Dropbox link instead but it works without problems on a Win10 machine I checked it on. Hopefully their security policies and restrictions will allow them to use this in the meantime. Sometimes solving a probem is best handled by passing it on those who are more highly motivated by their bosses breathing down their necks :smiley:

  • Bluetooth is the way to go, imho. Newer BT protocol is fairly secure (much harder to sniff than proprietary ISM radio protocols) and no fiddling with the cables - you get a phisical separation as a huge bonus too. Pretty much every smartphone has BT these days.

    @"Peter Jakacki" said:
    .... Hopefully their security policies and restrictions will allow them to use this in the meantime. Sometimes solving a probem is best handled by passing it on those who are more highly motivated by their bosses breathing down their necks :smiley:

    There are always ways to deal with the security restrictions and bosses. Allways :) .

  • I hope You are able to make it Peter 😊
    I have always wanted to be able to make my own android apps, but sadly it is beyond my knowledge and awailable time.

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