Microsoft MVP Azure | IoT Platform Architect | Maker
Auteur: Sander van de Velde
I started as an IT consultant in 1993. I like to get my hands dirty with software innovations and I try to implement these in my daily work.
Currently, I am involved in the IoT Platform part of Azure (eg. IoTHubs, StreamAnalytics, Azure Functions, Mobile Apps, EventHubs, Universal Apps) and Azure in general.
I've been presented with the 2017 Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) Award and I'm a member of the Microsoft Azure Advisory Board.
For me, it is important to share knowledge. And I am committed doing so by writing blogs, articles for magazines and giving lots of presentations.
When offline, I like cutting down trees using Gränsfors Bruks axes, sailing, motorcycling or geocaching with my wife and my sons.
I recently had to measure the number of products passing a light emitting sensor. I got this Photo Electric switch E3JK-DS30M1 which has a relais to indicate if something is reflecting the infrared light it emits or not.
The schema is pretty simple:
You just attach 24V DC to the BLUE (-) and BROWN (+) wires. Then the sensor device behaves like a relais where the WHITE and BLACK wires resemble the ‘normally open’ state. The WHITE and GREY wires are used for the ‘normally closed’ state.
I tested the relais with my multimeter (set to Ohm). The relais was truly indicating objects passing by the beam of the photo electric switch.
The measuring distance can differ. My device has a range from 5 to 40 centimeters (it is adjustable with a potentiometer). But white and shiny objects reflect the beam better than dark objects. And do not hold the sensor directly into the sun, you get a lot of false readings!
I used an Advantech Wise 4012E IO module to measure the state of the relais. Let’s check out the settings.
Azure IoT supports cloud-to-device messaging with Direct Methods. This is an important tool when you want to control your devices real-time or if you want to execute logic on the device real-time.
In the past I have written about Direct Methods a couple of times. like this blog. I then wrote about IoT Edge supporting Direct Methods too. To be more specific, Modules in an IoT Edge support Direct Methods.
But my colleague Heindirk pointed me at a little gem unknown to me.
The same logic used to communicate from Azure cloud to a module can also be used to communicate from one module to another module without IoT Edge routes!
I have always have had a sweet spot for GPS technology. Back in 2005 already, I did some projects with tracking vehicles using a ‘GPS mouse’ and smart phones with GPRS. A GPS was not built in by default in those devices. We used Bluetooth to connect. I still have warm feeling about what I managed to do back then…
Nowadays, GPS is available everywhere. Just count the number of GPS receives you have in your mobile devices, car or even your pets collar. Within my family we easily reach up to 12 systems with free and accurate global positioning.
I wanted to experiment with GPS over USB cable. So I was checking out this GPS receiver on Ali express with this promising title: “BEITIAN Auto-adapted baud rate USB GNSS GPS Receiver 1Hz 4M FLASH 5.0V Double-sided tape NMEA-0183 BN-85U better than BU-353S4”
I used a Sirfstar III chipset for GPS, fourteen years ago. I have no clue about the ‘BU-353S4’ or even the better ‘BN-85U’ 🙂
Let’s check out if this one just works OK as a reliable GPS receiver.
This year the new FutureTech event was organized for the first time. The focus is on innovative Microsoft technology. This event shows technology which you probably do not know off yet or which you do not use yet. But you will likely use within a year or so…
The CFS is available at sessionize.com and it closes december 31, 2019.
IoT is one of the major tracks. So drop your paper on Azure IoT Device provisioning, DigitalTwins, IoTCentral, AzureSphere, IoTEdge, workshops, hacks for makers, real world examples, architecture, ASAP
This event will not collide with the MVP summit 2020.
Testing IoT Edge at scale has some practical challenges. Where do you get all the hardware from if you want to test on two, or five, or twenty, or more devices?
The Azure cloud provides a simple solution: just spin up a bunch of Virtual Machines each running the IoT Edge Runtime. As long as you can provide the VMs access to simulated sensors instead of physical sensors, you are good to go.
Let’s dive a little bit deeper into the preconfigured VM that Microsoft recommends for these situations.