Anyone have any experience or insights into this hardware / driver combo? Once connected, can I use UNIX commands to start sending text to the display? Any "Hello World" tutorials out there that can help me get started?
Loc: Stoughton, WI USA
That is a good question. I looked over their site and they don't have any programming examples, just the raw "this is what this is" programming stuff. Have you tried contacting their support for assistance, or a "Hello World" example to work from?
MacBook 2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo w/ 2GB DDR2 RAM & 120GB SATA 5400RPM HDD Canon Rebel XTI Google Cr-48 Beta Laptop
The http://www.ftdichip.com/Drivers/FT2232CDrivers.htm%3Cbr%20/%3E driver they have reccomended appear to be a USB to serial device driver, after reading through the PDF installation file on that site its bascially a way of adding a serial port to a Mac. I'm guesssing that the matrix orbital uses a similair chipset as the USB to serial adapter from that page and once installed you would have a standard serial interface to your VFD display. However at that point I think you would still have to create somthing to output data to the display over your newly created serial port. I'm sure its possible, but its not going to be easy.
Just found http://www.wildrice.com/BlueCabbie/ which may be of some help, a guy built a carMac using iTunes and a matrix orbital display, he also has the source for his control system availble as an Xcode project.
So hooking it up won't be a problem. But in the pdf for that product, it says the following:
A standard B type USB header is provided on the display for USB communication. The USB cable provides power and data to the display. There are two ways of communicating to the display. Under Windows, the user will have direct access to the display drivers or create a virtual COM Port (VCP). With the VCP, a new COM Port gets created in Windows. Under the control panel the user can set all the options for the USB device, including speed. Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows 2000, and Windows XP drivers have been tested. VCP drivers are also available for Apple OS-X, OS-8, and OS-9. Linux drivers are available as well, but have not been tested by us, nor will Matrix Orbital be able to provide any support for them. For more driver information please visit http://www.FTDIchip.com
So once I hook it up, sending data becomes my problem. Any ideas?
Basically however your display is connected to your mac either directly via USB or via a usb to serial convertor once you have installed the drivers your going to get an serial communictions port availble to send the data you want displayed through. That seems to be the way that most of these VFD or LCD screens work, whatever operating system you are using.
Your options as I can see them are: Use the blueCabbie project and be content with the itunes information. Take the source to the BlueCabbie project and adjust it to your needs. (ie learn objective c) Start from scratch using the Apple tutorial and create your own interface. (again learn objective c)
Keep searching for somone else who has done the hard work allready.
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