Well good day then! Some recent comments from the last Arduino GSM post has chimed me in to the fact that I still have this site out there, and after so I may as well make it useful :)

I had put the Car GPS Tracking project on hold for a while since I had a new group project I was devoting all my time on: Kwartzlab — Kitchener/Waterloo’s epic new Hackerspace :). We opened the doors on October 1st and have been running at warp speed ever since! If you’re in the area, you oughtta make it out to one of our Tuesday Open Nights to check us out!

Now, as far as the Libelium GPRS shield goes, not long after that post I actually switched to a new module .. the anniversary of my stolen vehicles was approaching fast and I didn’t want to get caught without being able to engage the ejection seats via SMS (hmm, do those void the terms of a lease?). Anyhow, the module I ended up using is the GSM Playground from HW Kitchen. It’s similar to the Libelium shield but has some additional nifty features such as having a built-in microphone, amp (to connect a loudspeaker), and the ability to receive and send SMS messages reliably (yay!). It’s also got a rudimentary objected-oriented library available for communication right out of the box. Now with that project on the go, I plan to go back to the Libelium shield and complete the library I was working on for that.

Aside from the now working SMS component, I’ve recently hit another hurdle — the GPS unit. So far I’ve been using an antiquated serial GPS called the Delorme Tripmate, (which was modded into a standard NMEA receiver). While relatively large (pre-modded version required four AA batteries), it worked well enough and happened to come enclosed in a waterproof case that could fit the Arduino and GSM shield in as well. Problem is, the thing died on me recently so I’ve been looking for a suitable alternative. I could hook up a USB-based receiver but I’ve been considering stacking a GPS shield of some sort to keep things nice and compact. Stay tuned!