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Embedded Graphics Development Platform?

Thu Sep 20, 2018 6:16 pm

I am finding my overpriced project clock is not meeting my needs. I wanted to develop an internet based time/weather ceiling projection system using a $30 LED projector from China and a Pi.

I am wondering if there is a stripped down OS/development platform that lets me build a full screen simple graphics interface without having to worry about windowing systems, reboots, etc. I can build it with the full (or lite) os and scripts but I was hoping maybe somebody built a stripped down OS/graphics environment for building appliance like a clock.

Python would be the preferred language.

Thanks for your suggestions.

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Re: Embedded Graphics Development Platform?

Fri Sep 21, 2018 12:10 am

I would suggest you start by developing on Raspbian Lite, maybe using PyGame or Kivy ( )

When your software is finished (or at least a working prototype ) you can come back and maybe evaluate how your application can be installed and will run on even smaller distributions.

My point is.. if its a clock and probably will probably run for months without a reboot if programmed properly, does it then matter much if the boot time is 15s or 30s ?

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Re: Embedded Graphics Development Platform?

Fri Sep 21, 2018 7:12 am

You can build full screen graphic application with Qt that use the frame buffer directly no need for X Windows or any disk top system.

Last time I did this I had to build the Qt 5 libraries from source as per these instructions ... spberry_Pi
There are newer similar instructions here ... spberry_Pi

With this set up the Qt app can be as complex as you like and also include hardware accelerated 3D rendering using OpenGL.

Qt 5 is now available as a package in Raspbian Stretch, I don't know if it can be used without X Windows though.

The Qt 5 API can be used from Python. I have never tried that.

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Re: Embedded Graphics Development Platform?

Fri Sep 21, 2018 8:52 am

$30? hmm, a few YouTubes around.
$52 Ozzie dollars plus shipping?
Xmas is coming will add it to my Santa list.

Baremetal OpenVG Clock etc ... 9&start=30

For graphic code testing I use USB boot mode on a Zero ... boot#p6192
It is faster than burning SD card every time.
Others have updated via Ethernet etc as Ultibo has kernel update functions.
I'm dancing on Rainbows.
Raspberries are not Apples or Oranges

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Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2018 5:42 pm

Re: Embedded Graphics Development Platform?

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:11 am

Kivy looks interesting. Wasn't so much worried about minimal OS--more interested in ease of booting to a single app (which I usually do with scripts) and ease of full screen graphics development.

The projector is here: ... &ID=47184]

Its closer to $40 but I tend to round down talking to the CFO (wife) :)

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