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      • EFM32 Zero Gecko starter kit with environmental sensing board

        Vincent_van_Bev | 10/300/2014 | 03:27 PM

        Hi Nari,


        You said there would be another contest for the EFM32 zero with expansion board. Is this still in the pipeline. I would love to try it out.




      • EFM32 standalone programmer

        amenleung | 10/290/2014 | 05:17 AM

        This project implements a standalone programmer for EFM32, details are described in readme.txt file and source code (IAR) is attached.


      • Game Tin

        shifthack | 10/282/2014 | 10:12 PM


        I've wanted to do a project built around an ultracapacitor for a while now. I finally decided to do it and the Game Tin is the result. The Game Tin is a handheld gaming device that is designed to mount inside of an Altoids Smalls mint tin. I incorporated solar cells to augment the limited energy capacity of the ultracapacitor. Given the limited energy available, I needed good low power solutions for the LCD and microcontroller. I was drawn to the Sharp Memory Display and eventually found AN0048, SlimWatch, and OTM-02. With all these great references, I decided to go with a Silicon Labs microcontroller.


        Here is a picture of a Game Tin prototype unit put together and mounted in the Altoids smalls tin.






        • Fully charge in 30 seconds via USB
        • Stay charged indefinitely outdoors via solar energy
        • Hours of runtime on a single charge when no solar energy is available
        • Download and store games and applications
        • Eco-concious design
        • Open source hardware and software

        Here is a picture of the Game Tin prototype PCBs with parts populated.




        Tech Specs


        • 128x128 pixel Sharp memory display
        • EFM32GG332F1024 microcontroller
        • Silicone gamepad buttons
        • USB Micro B port
        • Solar cells (total 44.6 mW power @ Maximum Power Point in 1 sun conditions)
        • 10F ultracapacitor with 9 mWhr capacity

        Current Status


        The Game Tin is still a work in progress but I have some data to share. So far I've ported one game to the platform that was originally targeting the Hackvision Arduino platform. The game is Poofy Adventure and it is a platformer style game. It will serve as a nice test bed for making power optimizations as it is fairly well suited to taking advantage of the memory display. The game is running at 20 frames per second. Most of the time only 8-16 lines per frame need to be updated until the screen scrolls once the edge is reached. Currently it is not optimized to take advantage of that or other things mentioned in AN0048. Given that, it has a 1.5 hour runtime off of the ultracapacitor alone with no solar contribution. Outdoors in good sunlight, it will run indefinitely and actually charge the ultracapacitor. I'm looking forward to see what I can get after optimizing it.


        The following video talks a little bit about application management and runs through a short demo of Poofy Adventure.



        I have more information on my website including a blog talking about various aspects of development and testing. Check it out if you are interested.


        Game Tin Website

        To make things easy, I'll also include a link here to the source files. The schematic capture and PCB design is being done in KiCad. Here is where you can find links to all of the repositories.


        Source files