This document covers the usage and technical details of the Motion Sensor platform developed at the Alexandra Institute during 2008-2010 by Jesper Nielsen and Jacob Andersen. The document is comprised of two parts: a user guide part containing an introduction to the platform including basic information on how to program the microcontrollers, and an in-depth technical reference part.

Jacob Andersen, Alexandra Instituttet A/S, © 2010
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Wireless sensor board top
side   Wireless sensor board bottom side   The USB stick

The wireless sensor board top and bottom view, and the USB stick.

The Platform Hardware

The Motion Sensor platform is made up of two device types: a wireless sensor board and a USB stick capable of forming wireless networks. This following sections introduce the two device types.

Wireless Sensor Board

The sensor board is basically a tiny computer with sensing capabilities, a wireless networking device, a couple of buttons, and LEDs. All of this has been designed with low-power technology, in order to keep the power consumption as low as possible.

The sensor board's power supply is a single coin cell, and a well-designed application may be capable of running for months or even years on a single battery.

Checking the state of the battery

A battery test can be performed by pressing both buttons and releasing the "Reset" button first. In case the battery level is (still) OK, both LEDs will light up for a couple of seconds. If the battery level is low either one or no LED will light up. Furthermore, the LED intensity will provide a hint about the battery level. A clear bright light indicates a fresh battery while a very dim light will indicate a battery approaching the end of its life.

USB Stick

The USB stick is used as a bridge between an ordinary computer and the wireless network of sensor devices.

User Guides

The guides and manuals listed below introduce the Motion Sensor platform at a level of detail appropriate for the new user.

Technical Reference

The hairy technical details of the platform can be divided into the following main themes:

 All Data Structures Files Functions Variables Defines

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