First, it’s incredibly exciting to see the enthusiasm for the Hub here on Crowd Supply and at the 2019 Teardown Conference last weekend.
Teardown was a great event and being able to launch this product at the conference was a treat. The sessions were excellent and it was a pleasure just geeking out with this awesome community of engineers, hackers, artists, and makers.
During the conference I did a presentation on how I’ve used Jupyter Notebooks to aid the electrical design and testing of this product. The video of the talk and source to all of the notebooks I demonstrated are on GitHub.
One of the example notebooks showed control and monitoring of the USB Hub from within Jupyter. A simple GUI allows downstream per-port and data pairs to be controlled, and live-graphs of per-port power draw.
Since the Conference, I’ve improved the notebook’s Data and Power Control buttons to mirror LED state of the USB Hub – meaning the buttons automatically change color based on Hub’s state. For the data buttons:
Here’s a short video showing this Notebook in action:
Demonstration of Hub control inside of Jupyter.
You may have noticed that the Hub’s power monitoring is sensitive enough to pickup on a power change when the IceBreaker’s USB data lines are disconnected. The FPGA is still running & blinking LEDs, but the IceBreaker’s FTDI Bridge chip enters a low-power mode which lowers overall power consumption.
This notebook uses the open-source USB Hub Python Driver for all communication with the Hub. This driver includes a command line utility with this same kind of functionality (power monitoring & control, and data monitoring & control) for folks who prefer that and will include a small standalone GUI tool in the future. This Python driver is also designed to be easy to embed within a larger testing, automation, or continuous-integration framework.
If you’re interested in learning more about the other products shown in this video, I invite you to checkout their respective campaign pages.
|iCEBreaker FPGA: The first open source iCE40 FPGA development board designed for teachers and students|
|Fomu: An FPGA board that fits inside your USB port|
Thanks again for your interest and support of the Programmable USB Hub! It’s amazing to see that the campaign has fully funded so quickly!