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Offline GUI/Dashboard & eInk Displays - Python

Fri Feb 23, 2018 2:09 pm

I've been looking in to GUI design for my Pi project, my intention is to use Python 3 and I want to have a dashboard type display but not just read only, I need a few options, buttons, simple input fields / drop downs etc and find it a little confusing.

It looks like guizero / tkinter are the main options here but the interface they deliver looks to be pretty dated, is it possible to make a GUI look slick using these? Admittedly I've only just started researching, I don't know yet how much I can alter the appearance of the controls or if I can make it more graphical etc.

I'd have liked to have built an HTML display but while I have PHP and web experience I don't feel a web UI is ideal for my application, the display will be analogous to a car dashboard but focused on GEO tracking in one mode and timing in the other (0-60 times and maybe later lap times). As such I'd like it to look slick but also have buttons for control, ultimately on a small screen.

My plan is on startup I can either "start tracking" which would log position data to a file and display it on the screen (maps not really necessary) then have a button to prepare a timer, pressing it would wait until the accelerometer stabilizes then start a timer when I set off (based on accelerometer change) and time until the GPS reports 60mph.

I see a lot of pretty cool looking dashboards with things like but they seem to be more web based, is there anything that would give me the display quality and control as a Python GUI or am I stuck with tkinter/guizero?

Secondly... eInk... as I'll use this outdoors I'm interested in a eInk / ePaper display, it's hard to tell from my reading whether these work just like a regular display or if they're more specialized, does connecting an eInk display work like a regular screen or does it require more programmatic control?

Thanks in advance for any pointers!


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Re: Offline GUI/Dashboard & eInk Displays - Python

Fri Feb 23, 2018 2:59 pm

Maybe take a look at

What size / resolution display are you considering ?

An eInk display with touch and decent size does not sound cheap to me. They come in different sizes with different types on interfaces but what they have in common is very slow update rates so you should either way design your gui for that. The easiest integration is if they come with HDMI.

Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2018 1:34 pm

Re: Offline GUI/Dashboard & eInk Displays - Python

Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:07 pm

I get the feeling that if I want the display to be very interactive I'm better with a regular screen but if I make this more "device-like" I could go with eInk and buttons.

On startup I could display "start tracking" or "accel. timer" and choose with a button press, tracking would start immediately and a button be available top "stop", the timer would wait until it stabilized then show "Ready to launch" or whatever.

I get the feeling eInk may be more hassle than it's worth for now?

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