sep 022019

Ik moest vandaag met de auto, dus ook tijd om naar de radio te luisteren. Dus hoorde ik bij BNR radio vanochtend ook het item langs komen over het afschaffen / uitfaseren van ISDN door KPN. Compleet met expert aan de lijn die vertelde dat er nog bedrijven waren die hun brandmelder of alarmsysteem aan een ISDN-lijn hadden hangen (zonder dat ze het wellicht wisten) en die zou dan niet meer werken.  Het was allemaal naar aanleiding van het bericht erover op de NOS-website. Op mijn plek aangekomen zag ik op Twitter ook de nodige verontwaardigde reacties (ISDN was een tijdje trending): hoe durfde KPN het aan om zomaar zo’n dienst uit de luscht te halen.

Tja, ze hadden het al in 2017 aangekondigd, en de kortstondigde ophef van vandaag laat zien dat dit (zeggen dat ze het echt uit gaan zetten) beter werkt dan het bericht van toen, want blijkbaar zijn er nog 10-duizenden bedrijven die er gebruik van maken.

Ik wist niet eens meer dát het nog gebruikt werd, het is/was echt een technologie uit de tijd van de inbelmodems, niet meer uit de tijd van vaste internetverbindingen (via ADSL, kabel of glasvezel).

Wél van deze tijd is de oproep van Minister Van Nieuwenhuizen (Infrastructuur en Waterstaat) aan werkgevers om met hun werknemers afspraken te maken over het zakelijk MONO rijden. Dus niet reageren op app-jes en al helemaal niet terugschrijven. Nee, kan ik me iets bij voorstellen. Leek mij heel logisch dat je dat niet doet tijdens het rijden. Al zul me mij nooit horen zeggen dat ik MONO rijdt.  Komt wellicht ook omdat ik wél handsfree bel tijdens het rijden. Tenminste, korte telefoontjes. Geen telefonische overleggen van een uur waarvan ik weet dat ik mijn hoofd helemaal bij het overleg moet houden. Dan kun je niet ook nog rijden.

Ik vind het ook zo’n heerlijk Nederlands ding weer: handsfee bellen in de auto is toegestaan in de wet maar we gaan mensen oproepen om het tóch niet te doen want niet bellen is nog veiliger dan wél bellen. Verbieden willen we het niet (daar is geen draagvlak voor) dus stoppen we heel veel geld in campagnes.

En in beide gevallen is het vandaag een deel van de dag nieuws, terwijl het morgen alweer vergeten is.

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LoRaWAN with LoPy and KPN + Loggly

 Gepubliceerd door om 15:49  Hardware, LoRaWAN
mei 202017

In the Netherlands, KPN was the first to offer nationwide coverage of a IoT network based on LoRaWAN. You can read about my first tests using their Network in combination with the Marvin node in this post. Unlike with the IoT network that for example is currently being rolled out by T-Mobile, which uses NB-IoT and different hardware than The Things Network (TTN), switching a device from the TTN network to the KPN network is simple: just change the DEV_ADDR, NWK_SWKEY, APP_SWKEY values in the of you Pycom LoPy to the values that are provided in the management environment of KPN (see image left). No changes in the microPython code needed. You could even have a device connect to both networks and switch between them (although you probably don’t want to do that when you’ve got a battery powered node).

KPN offers a free test period where you can test your nodes on their infrastructure without having to pay. It is what I used for my train trip last month where I used both the Marvin node (connected to KPN) and the LoPy (connected to TTN) as a way to get a feel for coverage while moving in the Netherlands.

Besides the fact that KPN offers a commercial solution, the free test version (don’t know about the paid version) has a number of differences: unlike TTN where they provide a number of integration options (Cayenne, Data Storage provided by TTN, HTTP integration, IFTTT Maker), KPN only offers HTTP integration. This means you have to provide a destination URL for an HTTPS endpoint where the data is stored. In the Marvin workshop they use as a free and easy to setup endpoint. But endpoints created there only store data for a limited time. That is why I now use the free version of to collect the data. But of course, the data is only useful if I manage to get it from Loggly to my own local system.

A second difference is a bit of a mystery. If I used the Marvin to send data over the KPN network, the data gets encrypted by the Marvin, but automatically is being decrypted again on the KPN server. But if I use the LoPy to send data over the KPN network, the data shown in the debug console at KPN and the data received by Loggly is still encrypted.

I managed to get both challenges resolved and in this post I’ll do a write-up not of the (lengthy) process of getting to the working code, but of the end result. All code is available on Github.

Lees verder….

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apr 072017

What happens if you take a LoRaWAN node with you in a train while you travel across the Netherlands for about 2,5 hours? I did not know and wanted to find out today because I had to be in Zwolle for a meeting.

So I charged a big external battery (with 2 USB ports), drilled a couple of holes in a plastic container to guide through the micro-USB connectors, and put in some bubble foil inside for safe transport. I drilled another hole to connect the external antenna for the LoPy node. Besides the LoPy, I put the Marvin in the box, with the temperature/humidity sensor on the outside of it. Not that it really mattered, today was going to be about finding gateways while I was on the road.

Things did not look good for the experiment though in the morning. The Things Network (TTN) backbone was acting up again. That was a bummer, because I still had to change the code on the LoPy. It had the code installed for the Circuit Playground and I wasn’t planning on bringing that also. So I changed the code to a simple “send a number every 30 seconds” but was not able to test it before leaving for the train.

To make matters more balanced: I decided to have the Marvin connect to the KPN network (still got 60 days left on my free trial), but the server decided that today was a good day to refuse to work. And I needed a place to store the data sent by the Marvin. Luckily I found another site that you can use as a destination for KPN nodes. I think it is better than Hookbin btw because it keeps more records and even the free plan should be enough for most people. Another nice thing was that Loggly also can act as an HTTP-integration for TTN, so I could collect both the data sent via KPN and the data sent via TTN in one single place. Quick tip: Loggly provides you with an http:// url for the endpoint, KPN doesn’t accept http:// but you can simply change the provided url to https:// and then it works.

OK, into the train. I wasn’t really sure what to expect. A train means lots of metal and a fast moving object (and nodes).

Lees verder….

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mrt 272017

I will do this post in English because the number of potential readers will increase, and because I do have some additional questions that are more likely to be answered this way.

So, last weekend I played around with my Pycom LoPy boards. A while back they announced that it would finally be possible to setup a LoRaWAN Nano Gateway with TTN (The Things Network) using the board. Now, I know there are fierce discussions about this, yes, I do realize that “There are no true or half true LoRaWAN (or even π % true) devices. There are LoRaWAN devices and non LoRaWAN devices“. In my case I simply want to be able to experiment with LoRaWAN and get some nodes connected for testing. Without TTN coverage in my home village that is not going to happen. Now, I might pay for the 300-400 euro for a simple “true” gateway, but it means I will have to have a working setup first. Otherwise I am not sure that it will ever work. But this post is not about The Things Network, nor about Pycom and the Lopy boards. There is a webinar scheduled this week, hopefully after that I will be able to set things up.

It is just an introduction as to why, when I unboxed the Marvin board that got delivered earlier this week, I was not that hopeful about actually getting it to work. And I was wrong. 🙂

Lees verder….

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