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JavaScript-powered prototyping platform speeds IoT dev't

23 Oct 2014

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Marvell has unveiled a JavaScript-powered Internet of Things construction kit that aims to power the next wave of connected device prototyping. Kinoma Create is a pro-developer experience that combines hardware, software and tools geared particularly to be approachable and fast, stated the company.

Developers, designers and makers need to be able to explore ideas and iterate fast. The crowdfunding community recognised the potential to transform prototyping, with contributions to Kinoma Create's Indiegogo campaign from 26 countries exceeding the fundraising target by more than 500 per cent.

Kinoma Create

Marvell took to crowdfunding to build the kind of community that can realise the fullest potential of its innovations. Thanks to their support and input, all aspects of Kinoma Create have been designed to give developers the time, inspiration and flexibility to make truly great products through prototyping:

Touchscreen

Touchscreens are common in consumer products, but not developer devices. Kinoma Create bucks the status quo, arriving ready to go with an integrated touchscreen. The screen is a powerful debugging tool, allowing developers to see and change what's going on inside their prototype. The screen is a canvas where developers can quickly mock up buttons, lights and other controls without the time needed to build the hardware. And the screen is essential for prototypes of products that require a screen or interactive interface.

JavaScript: Scripting the future of device development

JavaScript has the most momentum of any programming language in the last 20 years because it is a high-level professional language that is easy to get started with. Meanwhile, makers are still working in low-level languages and obscure scripting environments. JavaScript is the programming language for prototyping with Kinoma Create. Kinoma Create supports the JavaScript 5th Edition standard, which is optimised for IoT devices by the XS virtual machine.

KinomaJS is the latest JavaScript framework for building apps for connected devices and the mobile devices they work with. With KinomaJS, developers quickly connect the fundamental building blocks of any IoT device: user experience, network communication, digital media and hardware. The unique pins service in KinomaJS allows scripts to manage, interpret and filter data from hardware on digital, analogue, I2C and serial interfaces.

Just make apps, forget about firmware

Apps fuelled the personal computer and mobile revolutions. Now, Kinoma Create adopts apps as the building block for hardware projects, replacing firmware, file systems, drivers and daemons. Built-in touch apps deliver the functionality of command line tools, making common development tasks more accessible including configuring hardware pins, viewing and managing files, installing apps, and scanning for network services.

Fast, web-like development

Kinoma Studio is the integrated development environment for building KinomaJS apps. It is architected to speed and simplify the development process so programmers have more time to experiment. Edits made to code in Kinoma Studio are deployed and launched on Kinoma Create in as fast as two seconds. The integrated debugger automatically discovers Kinoma Create devices using WiFi, making it possible to debug devices without having immediate access to them. When designing, implementing, debugging and testing an application for a mobile or embedded device, it can be more convenient to work on a computer rather than on the target device. Kinoma Studio includes a built-in simulator, to quickly run and debug KinomaJS using just a computer, stated the company.

Very well connected

By definition, IoT devices are connected. KinomaJS enables devices to communicate using several established and emerging protocols simultaneously. SSDP and Zeroconf are available to both discover other devices and broadcast KinomaJS authored services on the local network. HTTP, HTTPS, WebSockets, MQTT and CoAP clients and servers are available to communicate data between Kinoma Create, other devices and the cloud.

Cloud services for data rich apps

wot.io, a data service exchange for connected device platforms, announced an agreement with Marvell to provide Kinoma Create customers free access to a rapidly growing set of data services. The wot.io open operating platform brings together all players in the IoT ecosystem to connect and share data regardless of device, standards or connectivity.

Early adoption of Kinoma Create

The Association for Computing Machinery's User Interface Software and Technology Symposium selected Kinoma Create as the development platform for its prestigious 2014 Student Innovation Contest. More than 30 student teams used Kinoma Create to build projects that included a hands-free gesture and voice recognition-based recipe organiser, a location-based reminder system for the home and assistive technology that tells visually impaired users if appliances are on.

Kinoma Create is available as a pre-order through SparkFun for the suggested retail price of $149. Kinoma Studio is available as a free download for Windows and Macintosh computers at kinoma.com/studio.




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