Series: Evil Genius
Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education TAB; 1 edition (December 6, 2011)
Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.4 x 10.9 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #601,859 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #66 in Books > Computers & Technology > Hardware & DIY > Microprocessors & System Design > Microprocessor Design #173 in Books > Engineering & Transportation > Engineering > Electrical & Electronics > Electronics > Microelectronics #246 in Books > Computers & Technology > Hardware & DIY > Single Board Computers
PROSInteresting projectsFour ways to interface Android to ArduinoGood step-by-step instructions for building hardwareCONSNo explanation for Android app codeThree of four interface styles require a wire connection between Arduino and AndroidInadequate explanation of workings of the overall projectHIGHLIGHTSThe projects in this book are more interesting than the predecessor, 30 Arduino Projects for the Evil Genius. Part 1 of the book has an assortment of interesting Android+Arduino projects on a variety of subjects. Part 2 is dedicated to home automation. I have the sense that the book was originally going to be dedicated to home automation, because one of the chapters in the home automation section refers to Chapter 7 as Chapter 1. For a full list of projects with a brief description, visit the book's site at [...] (change "spot" to "." and don't forget the www or it won't work).The most valuable thing about this book is four useful interfaces that allow an Android device to control an Arduino. They are: bluetooth, wired USB, wired sound port (you don't actually hear it), and wired ethernet. Realistically, Android as a controller is best in wireless form, and only the bluetooth interface does that. A TV Remote design that requires plugging the Arduino into the Android via a USB cable is just clunky. The author could have presented Wifi and Zigbee, both of which are wireless and should work with most Android tablets and Arduinos with additional hardware; Zigbee requires an IOIO plug-in for the Android.
Other books in this series, and others by Simon Monk, have been well received and received good to excellent reviews. I had high expectations when I bought this book.Its a serious disapointment. There is very little about Android in this book. It covers the Adruino side fairly well, but each project is a combination of part Android and part Arduino, and the Android side is essentially missing.The book stated repeatidly that covering Android is too complex and would take its own book. OK, but why then does this book's title claim to do exactly this? The body does not deliver. A typical project will show 30 lines of Java/Dalvik and say "download the rest" with little to no explaination as to what the code does.The author makes some strange engineering decisions, such as using an encoded audio format to transfer data between the Android and Arduino, but does not explain why this choice was made. The very first project uses Bluetooth to transmit data, and both the Andriod phone/table and Adruino boards have USB. One might expect a simple USB data connection rather than the strange audio encoding.The book appears to have been quickly written and sloppily edited. For example, the section about "temperature logger" talks about the IC for the ultrasonic range finder, which is the topic of the next chapter. Clearly a bit too much copy and paste of the text.The theory sections of each project, which is often a key part of each chapter in other books in this series, are very thin and don't discuss either theory or the rationale behind the engineering decisions in the book.The book contains only a small number of projects, and four of them use exactly the same Arduino controller board.
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