The main point missing from my previous post was how to send anything to the gauges or the displays (well, and to the flash memory, but you’ll have to dig up the datasheet for that one, it’s very well explained).
Some people wanted a few more details about my previous experiment (Quirky Nimbus Hacking), so here they are:
Before starting, if you don’t know what I2C is, better check it out first. I’ll wait.
Update: Part 2 is up! Quirky Nimbus Hacking (part 2)
A bit of history
About two months ago, I became interested in a little device called the Nimbus, by a company called Quirky. Basically, it’s a little dashboard that shows different messages or values depending on the configured action. You can also configure it as an alarm with an annoying ‘beep’.
On itself, the device was a bit useless for me, as it was oriented for social media (you can show your tweeted messages for example) and some other uses I don’t care about (like the time it will take you to arrive at work depending on the traffic. I walk to work :P).
But my inner hacker was very curious, so I did some investigation in order to learn how this device worked and the customization possibilities.
I’ve decided to take a look at some of my existing and unfinished projects (basically everything, but that’s procrastination for you)
The first one I’m going to talk about is my Multi System Debugger/Emulator, AnouckGGMS, something like MESS but obviously way simpler and incomplete :).
Basically, I wanted to give emulation a try, and I decided to make my code extensible, so the common infrastructure can be used for multiple systems (what I call a system is a combination of CPU+GPU+peripherals). I started by implementing the CPU part of the systems, and implemented a Z80 and MOS6502 cores useful for different ones like the GameBoy or NES. Then I implemented the memory/IO structure of the different systems, so we have a way of reading our ROM and writing to RAM and to memory mapped peripherals.
For the past two weeks, and as part of a friendly challenge between friends, I worked on a remake (well, more like a port) of a game called “Dr. Drago’s Madcap Chase” (or in the original German, “Die Total Verrückte Rallye”)
If you don’t know the game, don’t worry too much, as from my sightings in forums, this is a relatively unknown game from BlueByte (you know, the guys from Albion… although you probably don’t know that one as well. However, The Settlers will surely ring a bell).
I discovered this game many years ago, and I thought it was very funny. Basically, it’s a Monopoly game with a few additions, but you really need to try it with a few friends to see all the little details they added.
What I did was create a few utils to convert the graphics from the game data files to PNGs, the map data files to Tiled TMX format, and the cities information data files to JSON.