Sensordrone: Sensor-app gateway device turns to Kickstarter (w/ Video)

June 12, 2012 by Nancy Owano, Phys.org

(Phys.org) -- A Kickstarter project aims to launch one keychain-fitting device for hundreds of sensor applications, a kind of “Swiss Army Knife of sensors.” Called Sensordrone, this is a device that turns your smartphone into a sensor-measuring device as well. Sensorcron is the company behind the Kickstarter project, which is inviting pre-orders now. The concept is to provide just one sensor accessory that can deliver data including temperature, humidity, and color intensity. Sensordrone will communicate the information it finds to the user’s handset via Bluetooth, at which point a Sensordrone-enabled app takes over.

The backers say the information can be accessed in three ways, in call-respond fashion, where you get only the most recent data; streaming mode, or data logging mode where the information is stored in memory until called upon.

The applications already running with Sensordrone include for use as breath analyzer, infrared thermometer, carbon monoxide measure, humidity, and light intensity meter.

The video promotion invites its use to check for gas leaks on a summer grill, for measuring carbon monoxide anywhere, color and light intensity, extremely local weather information, as in the user’s garden, monitoring humidity in a baby’s crib, of if you need an adjustment to the humidity in the kitchen fridge.

"In addition, there are plenty more in development, by us and independent developers,” says the company team. “More developers are welcome and will be supported.”

The company says it intends to open up the software; they will make application-level software for the device open source. They say that in turn anyone can combine a suite of new sensors with mobile devices to create new apps. They note an API and sample code will be made available.

As for platforms, according to the Kickstarter project site, the company is offering Android compatibility and, “if this project is successful, we will port to iOS and Blackberry platforms, and possibly Windows.”

The Kickstarter page lists the Sensordrone retail price at $199, but Kickstarter participants are invited for special pricing at $175. The estimated delivery date for the production release is this October.

“Let’s start a sensor revolution, and for something that is made in America,” the video team says.

Sensorcon started out doing sensor R&D for DARPA at MIT and is now a small manufacturer producing toxic-gas monitors. Sensorcon’s mission is described as also wanting to make sensor products that are simple and affordable. “We are a bunch of nerds who have been working hard for several years to make great sensor products. We're already in production of portable gas detectors, but now we want to offer something really unique that the market has never before seen.“

The project goal was to realize $25,000 but at the time of this writing they collected a little over $35,000 with 39 days to go.

More information: www.kickstarter.com/projects/4 … our-smartphoneand-be

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