File Submitter: etc6849
File Submitted: 21 Jul 2010
File Updated: 6 Aug 2010
File Category: Premise
Author: 123 and etc6849
First, a special thanks to 123 for all his help! Attached is a new driver for Premise that works with the BetaBrite signs by Adaptive.
New additions from the previous version posted by 123:
1. Now includes support for the multi color (blue, grey, white and purple) when using the BetaBrite Prism model. NOTE: the BetaBrite Prism must have RS232 on board; if you have the Sams Club version, it will only work with USB and is not supported in this driver. The RS232 version is available through ebay or an adaptive dealer. I prefer the BetaBrite Classic in terms of speed, but the BetaBrite Prism in terms of looks as I really like the blue LEDs.
2. Added support for two way communications. The driver grabs the firmware revision, speaker status, serial address and memory status from a BetaBrite. It also uses polling to periodically ensure RS232 communications are working (set interval using the PollingInterval property). The driver will automatically reset the sign and serial port should communications become unresponsive after a poll is sent.
3. Uses the "Two-Byte Protocol" found in Adaptive's literature to eliminate the use of escape characters (NUL, SOH, STX, EOT and etc). This greatly improved communications for the BetaBrites I have. In my testing of this new driver, I have sent 20000 commands with no port resets required.
What do I use a BetaBrite for?
A BetaBrite is a single line LED indoor sign that uses RS232 communications. It's capable of displaying more than one line at once via files (implemented as File A, File B... objects in the driver). The classic model supports red, yellow and green in various levels while the Prism model is full color!
Some uses I've thought of include:
1. Using the built in buzzer for weather alerts, door reminder, alarm clock buzzer etc....
2. Using the LED display for weather summary (via one of the XML based modules for Premise), volume levels (assuming you have two way RS232 communications with a receiver or amp), brightness levels, system status messages (i.e. motion detected in room x), title of current song or movice selection (via mSense, Sony DVD changer module or UPnP module) and anything else you can think of.
Import the module, then create a new BetaBrite device by right clicking under Devices.CustomDevices using Premise Builder. Set the BetaBrite's type and select the RS232 port where the BetaBrite is installed. Next, place some text to display in one of the file object's (aka File_A, File_B...) message properties and click display. Not the file objects are found under the BetaBrite device object after you create the device. If you want to turn the signs buzzer on/off toggle the beep property.
If you are going to install the sign in a home, the plexi-glass on the Classic verion is very easy to remove and tint. Tinting the screen reduces its brightness dramatically and improves the signs appearance. The Prism version has no plexi-glass, but you can add it to the front with velcro if you get creative.
Link to pictures of a tinted BetaBrite Classic:
Note you may want to use a WIFI networked based RS232 port server such as the Lantronix WiBox or Global Caches iTach WF2SL. These should work well in Premise; I use a Lantronix WiBox on one BetaBrite and a Lantronix MSS4 with the other.
Please post any issues or comments.
Version updates: 3.2 now uses the instr function to better detect memory size, serial address and speaker settings. BetaBrite Classic models return a different number of characters compared to the Prism model so this is an important update as the old driver would not work correctly with BetaBrite Classic signs.
Version updates: 3.3 uses modified onChangeBeep code that differentiates the beep type for BetaBrite Classic and Prism signs. As it turns out, Prism signs support constant or momentary beeps, but Classic signs only momentarily beep.
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