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[IoT Home Project] Part 2 - Visual Studio Code and the first node.js app

Previous post: http://vunvulearadu.blogspot.ro/2016/12/iot-home-project-part-1-initial-setup.html

In this post we will take a look on the initial setup of Raspberry PI, GrovePI and a sample code that helps us to check if node.js and GrovePI works as expected. Before we talk about the initial setup of the device.

Useful tools for Raspberry PI
I recommend to start with a fresh installation of OS. You can download the OS image from https://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/. I am a big fun of NOOBS, but feel free to use other versions of OS. To write the image on the memory stick you can use Win32 Disk Imager. A basic tools that do his job.

Once you wrote the image on a stick, don't forget to connect it to a monitor and activate SSH. By default SSH is disabled. You can do this from the console, but you can use raspi-config, a nice tools that allow you to do different configurations on your device
sudo raspi-config 
The SSH options is under 'Advanced Options'. From this tool, you can activate also VNC. A restart is needed after you do this change.
For VNC, the default resolution is not very high. This can be solved easilty if you run:
vncserver -geometry 1600x1200 -randr 1600x1200,1440x900,1024x768
From now, you can access your device using VNC Client or Putty. Default user is 'pi' and the default password is 'raspberry'.
The last tool that you should run is PI Finder. This tool will install the base packages, like node, vim, git and so on. It has a nice UI and it will search automatically for the raspberry in your private network. The default name of the raspberry is 'raspberrypi'.
Why I like at this tools is that it creates a file that can be accessed from PC or from any card reader where you can specify the WiFi SSI name and password. This is very useful when you end-up in a location where you don't have a network cable but you know WiFI password and name.
# hostname for your Raspberry Pi:
hostname=raspberryPI

# basic wireless networking options:
wifi_ssid=vunvuleawifi
wifi_password=radusecret

Visual Studio Code on Raspberry
In the last post I show you how you can compile your own version of Visual Studio Code. The good think is that others already done this. Headmelted offer us the package ready to be installed on our device. Thank you for that!
Once you downloaded and installed Visual Studio Code Package, the only think that you need to do is to run 'code-oss'

Initial Test Code
The code that I used for tests can be found on GitHub. Before running the code, froma shell, you need to run the below command that will install the GrovePI node package.
npm install node-grovepi
Once you done, you'll need to connect the humidity and temperature sensor on port D1 and the LCD on I2C 2. Now you are ready to run the code.
If in the future we will play more with the LCD, I promise that I will write a module for node that will help us to communicate with the LCD.

What's next?
The next step is to connect also others sensors for Raspberry PI and read all the data.

Next post: http://vunvulearadu.blogspot.ro/2016/12/iot-home-project-part-3-nodejs-module.html

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