A vision for the future - From Kinect hack to bootstrapped startup

I have a vision for the future.  I have a vision of a world where technology becomes so robust, it disappears into the background.  A world in which automated systems control lights, climate, and media, anticipating your every need, becoming an effortless extension of your mind and body.  I envision a future in which technology respects its users' privacy while providing all the benefits imagined by science fiction writers since Jules Verne.  When the time was right, I embarked on a journey to share this vision with the world.

Color camera support, ambient light detection added to Depth Camera Controller

Hello everyone!  I've added full-color video image support to the Nitrogen Logic Depth Camera Controller firmware, as well as ambient light detection within zones.  The controller's web interface now includes a Video tab, with ~2fps color video from the camera (browsers that lack WebGL support will show a black-and-white Bayer-encoded image).  So far, ambient light support is only available through the text-based interface on TCP/IP port 14308.

Curiosity's View of Mars in Pseudocolor 3D

GIMP and I spent a little quality time with the earliest full-size images from the Curiosity rover on Mars (artistic license was taken; this is not how the Martian sky actually looks — I know it's not blue):

View on Mars from Curiosity's Hazcam

To view in 3D, zoom out using your browser's zoom feature, then look through your monitor (not cross-eyed) until the red dots align, or you start to see 3D, sort of like a random dot stereogram.

Documentation for Nitrogen Logic products

I've put some basic public documentation on the Nitrogen Logic web site.  If you have a Nitrogen Logic controller and want to make the most of it, or you'd like to know more about how the controllers work, check it out at nitrogenlogic.com/docs. More stuff may find its way onto the documentation pages in the future.

Solving slowdowns in the Depth Controller web interface

Lately I've been working on adding some new features to the Depth Camera Controller. Unfortunately, I found that with these new features and xAP enabled, the controller's frame rate would gradually decrease, its responses would become significantly delayed, and eventually the entire system would grind to a halt.

With a bit of profiling I discovered that the controller's web server was spending all its time in the xAP support code, specifically the Treetop-based xAP parser.

HOWTO Video: Turn the Automation Controller into a Serial Port Server

I've created a new video demonstrating how to use a Nitrogen Logic Automation Controller as a single-port or multi-port serial-to-Ethernet adapter.  The Automation Controller's ability to handle multiple USB-to-RS-232 (or RS-422 or RS-485) adapters and TCP/IP network connections allows it to replace expensive serial port servers in new system designs and expand I/O on existing systems, while still leaving ample headroom for running custom automation logic.

New Automation Controller Firmware

I've just finished a new build of the Nitrogen Logic Automation Controller firmware.  This new version, 0.8.9, adds several fixes and new features.  There is a corresponding update for the Palace Designer software as well.