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Message from zachary.mcgibbon@mcgill.ca

Last year there was some discussion on this list as per setting up Wifi on Inter-Campus shuttle buses and here at McGill we were in the middle of doing our tests for our 4 shuttle buses between our downtown and remote campus.
 
As of January this year, we now have Wifi on all four of the buses.  We are using a setup of:
 
  • Aruba AP70
  • Bluetree BT-6801EB Modem (3G)
  • Axis T8122 DC 30W Midspan (to power the AP)
  • Oberon 1025-00 NMEA enclosure
 
We chose the Axis POE injector since the Aruba AP only has a 5v input and we are running directly off the alternator of the bus which gives us 12vdc.
 
One of the next parts of the project we would like to do is to add GPS tracking to the bus so students would know how close the bus is (as it gets quite cold here in Montreal during the winter!).  Since there is a second Ethernet port available on the AP70, we thought of using this for the GPS, however I can’t find any Ethernet GPS’.
 
Does anyone have any ideas of what we could use?  I had thought about getting a Garmin OEM GPS with a serial port output connected to a Lantronix Serial to Ethernet box and sending back the NMEA strings to a server, however I wanted to find an all included Ethernet solution and not have to worry about powering and configuring two devices.
 
Also, if we did use the OEM solution with NMEA strings, I’d have to find some way of plotting these on a map (Google Maps would be preferable) and this would probably require a lot of in house programming, or of course we could just use APRS.
 
Thanks
 
Zachary McGibbon
Network Specialist / McGill NCS
Email:  zachary.mcgibbon@mcgill.ca
Office: (514) 398-7388
 
 
 
********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.

Comments

This sounds fun. On our end, we found that the bus provider wasn’t real interested, and then they ended up doing it themselves. Go figure.

 

What about leveraging the USB port on the modem, for the likes of the USGLOBALSAT or Garmin GPS that connect via USB? I don’t know that it could be done, but it’s another interface to consider.

 

-Lee

 

Message from babell@pacific.edu

My first instinct would be to try to do this with old iphones.  They have GPS and WiFi.  It would be easy enough to wire them to 12v with a cigarette lighter charger.  And if none of the apps on the appstore will work for tracking, it shouldn’t be too hard to roll your own.

 

B.

 

 

----------------------------

Brandon Abell

Library Technical Specialist

University of the Pacific

McGeorge School of Law

 

E-Mail: babell@pacific.edu

Phone:  (916) 739-7029

Office: Library 151

----------------------------

 

 

Message from dwcarder@wisc.edu

Thus spake Zachary McGibbon, Mr (zachary.mcgibbon@MCGILL.CA) on Wed, Feb 01, 2012 at 04:27:37PM +0000: > > One of the next parts of the project we would like to do is to add GPS tracking to the bus so students would know how close the bus is (as it gets quite cold here in Montreal during the winter!). Since there is a second Ethernet port available on the AP70, we thought of using this for the GPS, however I can't find any Ethernet GPS'. > > Does anyone have any ideas of what we could use? I had thought about getting a Garmin OEM GPS with a serial port output connected to a Lantronix Serial to Ethernet box and sending back the NMEA strings to a server, however I wanted to find an all included Ethernet solution and not have to worry about powering and configuring two devices. This sounds like a perfect application for an Arduino connected to a Parallax GPS. http://arduino.cc/playground/Tutorials/GPS Maybe you could find some electrical engineering students to build it as a project :-) Otherwise, as you mention something based on APRS could work too. Dale ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.
Message from me@mpking.com

I haven't followed this in awhile, but the geograhics lab at Bridgewater State University looks like there still doing this:


I they were using custom built equipment to do this, but were thinking of transitioning to off the shelf stuff the last time I talked to them.

Mike

You could always contact Blirpit, which was developed here at UVM (where is it also very cold in the winter!)

To fine-tune your time managment skills you can use the Bus Line Information Retrieval Program, or Blurpit, a locally invented transportation-tracking service which allows students to track on- and off-campus buses in an attempt to increase efficiency and reduce waiting time at bus stops, both online and through their mobile phone! Find out where your bus is in 'real-time' and avoid standing outside in the blustery Burlington winters!

www.blirpit.com


Lynne Meeks
University of Vermont

On 2/1/2012 11:56 AM, Dale W. Carder wrote:
Thus spake Zachary McGibbon, Mr (zachary.mcgibbon@MCGILL.CA) on Wed, Feb 01, 2012 at 04:27:37PM +0000:
One of the next parts of the project we would like to do is to add GPS tracking to the bus so students would know how close the bus is (as it gets quite cold here in Montreal during the winter!). Since there is a second Ethernet port available on the AP70, we thought of using this for the GPS, however I can't find any Ethernet GPS'. Does anyone have any ideas of what we could use? I had thought about getting a Garmin OEM GPS with a serial port output connected to a Lantronix Serial to Ethernet box and sending back the NMEA strings to a server, however I wanted to find an all included Ethernet solution and not have to worry about powering and configuring two devices.
This sounds like a perfect application for an Arduino connected to a Parallax GPS. http://arduino.cc/playground/Tutorials/GPS Maybe you could find some electrical engineering students to build it as a project :-) Otherwise, as you mention something based on APRS could work too. Dale ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.
********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.

Dale beat me to it, as I was thinking of the exact same thing. With perhaps the downside being adding support complexity should it have an issue.

Sweet!  It seems like one challenge would be the devices would constantly be resetting every time the bus stops running if you are powered directly off the alternator? Has that caused any issues? On top of that it seems like you would be dealing with some environmental extremes that you wouldn’t normally have depending upon how it is all housed.

 

Pete M.

 

On 2/1/2012 1:11 PM, Peter P Morrissey wrote:

Sweet!  It seems like one challenge would be the devices would constantly be resetting every time the bus stops running if you are powered directly off the alternator? Has that caused any issues? On top of that it seems like you would be dealing with some environmental extremes that you wouldn’t normally have depending upon how it is all housed.


Our local metro service (CARTA) added WiFi on their buses several years ago.  It took several weeks and some co-incidental problem reporting to discover that when the buses drove through campus (we're bordered by several main city avenues) anyone on the bus using their wireless would be dropped.

We were doing rogue AP detection and mitigation at the time :)

Jeff
********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.

Well, at least you found out that the mitigation worked as advertised! :)

We do not have wireless on ouir bus system (contracted out). But the busses do have GPSs with Web access and a phone app. See http://ua.transloc.com/

 

If interested, I could drag up a contact for you.

 

-jcw                            

-------------------------------------
John Watters    UA: OIT  205-348-3992

 

  One of my old college buddies worked on a system like this, years ago now, in the Toronto area.  Their biggest recurring issue was with the vehicle maintenance manuals, which typically would begin each procedure with an instruction to the mechanic to disconnect "all electronic devices" and end with an itemized list of devices to be reconnected -- the latter of course not including the recently-added GPS unit....
 
David Gillett
 
 

Message from zachary.mcgibbon@mcgill.ca

We don’t’ seem to have any issues with the bus turning on and off, I was worried that maybe one day the Aruba might lose its config (as I’ve seen them do that sometimes).

 

As for environmental, we had thought about putting in a thermostat to turn on the power only when a certain temp was reached, but we decided to just have it power up when the bus starts.  So far this winter it hasn’t been very cold, but if it does get cold we’ll see how the equipment reacts.

 

The housing we’re using also should make sure that the equipment warms up pretty quickly.

 

Some pictures of our enclosures are on our Facebook page:

 

https://www.facebook.com/pages/McGill-University-Wi-Fi/130266517039196

 

Zachary McGibbon

Network Specialist / McGill NCS

Email:     zachary.mcgibbon@mcgill.ca

Office:    (514) 398-7388

 

Message from bosborne@liberty.edu

One of the network engineers I work with came up with this link for promising GPS products.

 

https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?cID=157&ra=true

 

It does not show any products for Canada – English, though. Canada French is not even an option to select. L

 

Bruce Osborne

Network Engineer

IT Network Services

 

(434) 592-4229

 

LIBERTY UNIVERSITY

40 Years of Training Champions for Christ: 1971-2011

 

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