Arbalet Mesh project
A mobile and handy interface
The Arbalet Mash project is in line with others Arbalet Living Lab’s projects, which is being able to provide an introduction in computer science to everyone, this in a artistic and entertaining environment through large format “Pixel Art”
If you love in Bordeaux, maybe you noticed already the work of our association, such as our collaboration with the , or one the A1 building’s facade in the university campus
We are a team of 7 IT students from ENSEIRB-MATMECA engineering’s school whose decided to join Arbalet Living Lab project to help make the implementation simpler and cheaper to increase the accessibility of this learning tool to everyone.
“Pixel Art” is an art style which reminds the art style of old-school video game, when the screen resolution didn’t allow back then to show more pixels, thus the drawing were often very minimalists and pixels were very visible, like the drawing below :
Drawing found dribble and Wikipédia
Arbalet Mesh principle
In our case, we are displaying images on very large surface, it is necessary for every pixel to have a micro controller, and so, they need to be synchronize between themselves. Before, it was necessary to link every pixel to a central unit which was responsible to send every pixel the information they need to function. But they were some drawbacks, for instance, every micro controller had to be physically linked to the central unit, which restricted severely the area of effect and caused some infrastructure problems, not to mention the long time it took.
The Mesh topology, or network communication system in mesh, is an organisation thought so every dot in the network is connected to his neighbours, here, information will be sent from one dot to his closest neighbour, until every component of the network gets the information. Using this topology has two main advantages :
- If one the component were to be out of order, we can still communicate with the others components thanks to the re-routing principle.
- We are not forced to link every component to the main unit, which help reducing the amount of wiring necessary for proper functioning (no network wiring necessary).
The goal for us is to find an evolutionary and efficient implementation answering the needs of this project, in order to do this, we have to widen our knowledge about the different technologies and modules the more fitted for the project, from a software point of view (programming language), electronic (extension module and micro controller type) and material. We will have to realize a stable and robust software integration to produce in the end 6 connected pixels in real-time, and, hopefully show the final prototype by summer 2019.