The official Electronic Tour Guide project blog

The Great Firmware Update

Electronic Tour Guide, the GPS City audio companion, Great Firmware Update

Bleep-bloop dear friends. Creaky on the Air! I’m glad to introduce you our new firmware that we have been polishing and debugging in the last six month. There are a lot of changes. Most significant of them:

  1. Algorithm of directional prompts improvement
  2. Smart narrative focal level shifting
  3. Improvement of narrative branching algorithm and content structuring
  4. RFID implementation out of the box
  5. Cross-branching conflicts resolution
  6. Removing number of annoying bugs as well

Welcome to Prague and other cities of our partners (the common map in progress, yeap). Be ready for new unforgettable experience!

Posted at 7am, December 15, 2015 | no comments; | Filed Under: Devices | read on

Fake voltage regulators

I’ve heard before about the fake ICs but never seen it in real life. Here is a first of them was captured accidentally in our new butch. The real magic that not all of them are bad. I was found one during the routine test, which is really noisy. But after that the more detailed analysis showed that there is just about 10% of them are problematic. Though, I didn’t check the voltage drop yet and thinking it would be better to resolder all of them for originals, to make sure that everything will be fine during regular operation.

Fake voltage regulators
Real one on the right. Be careful!

Posted at 8am, October 12, 2015 | no comments; | Filed Under: Devices | read on

New hardware including additional options released

Electronic Tour Guide, the GPS City audio companion, new hardware including additional options released

Good news everyone! We are happy to announce the official release of the new hardware version of Electronic Tour Guide. There is completely renewed hardware including new processor, embedded RFID option and interface for additional modules like indoor positioning system and radio broadcaster. Please feel free to send questions and inquiries. We’ll be glad to have new partners and clients in other cities and see people walking with our devices all around the world.

Posted at 9am, September 7, 2015 | no comments; | Filed Under: Devices | read on

NFC and positioning extensions for museums and exhibitions

Today is a great day. Because we’re finishing the great stage of developing of new version of ETG hardware. It is an magical NFC and indoor positioning system feature is coming. Soon, my dear readers, you will be able to equip your museums and exhibitions with tags and beacons, which radically extend experience of visitors of your exhibition / museum / city.

Imagine, you’re walking around the city and listening stories about everything around. One moment, being closer to museum that equipped with our tags, you are prompted like “this museum has ETG tags installed and ready for your visiting”. You’re getting in and listening the story about each object demonstrated inside. Isn’t that fantastic?

Electronic Tour Guide, the GPS City audio companion, RFID and positioning extensions for museums and exhibitions
This is how Electronic Tour Guide RFID tag looks like (blue version). It can be placed near exhibits that you would like to tell.

Posted at 9am, August 21, 2015 | no comments; | Filed Under: Devices | read on

The night testing story

You won’t believe me. After the 3 month of preparation and polishing of the new add-on for our little gimmicks me and my robo-friend Creaky found the most stupid and ridiculous bug I ever seen. To make the story short: some days ago, when everything was done and new shiny version of PCB layout was ready for fabrication, I decide to go to test device outside, like I did before hundreds of times. That was night and I went to the street romantically surrounded by the shades of trees to make couple of circles around the house and enjoy the night breath… suddenly after couple of minutes of walk I heard the message “battery is down, device going to sleep…” a-a-a what the hell?

I start digging it and have been checking practically everything, without any result. At home everything works just fine, outside — nope! I was repeating this procedure several times invariably with the same result. Only with the advent of the first rays of the sun I’ve got idea to try it in the fridge. And viola, it start switching off :) Attentive re-reading of data-sheets gave me the answer: the ATtiny, which a was planning to use as a co-processor, is a very temperature sensitive. If you don’t use external crystal oscillator, most probably you will get significant changing of frequency, which is a deadly when you need to sync anything.

Electronic Tour Guide, the GPS City audio companion, rejected module on testing breadboard.

It is always pleasure for me and my robo-friend Creaky to fund solution or learn something new. Eventually the whole life is a permanent process of learning. However, the worst side of the story is that looks like I need to redesign the whole beautifully created module form scratch :( and it was so elegant…

Posted at 9am, June 24, 2015 | no comments; | Filed Under: Devices | read on

He is dead, buddy

Hi kids, it is Creaky on the air again. It is a MAX1555 LiPo charging ICs. They are dead. It start to be obvious that it was a mistake to choose them for the first version of devices. Most of them just fried by the charging current, which is, surprisingly, not exceed parameters given in data-sheet. Besides, it is the most yummy and delicious things I ever try! Nyammmm

Electronic Tour Guide, the GPS City audio companion, dead max1555 from the older version of device
Bon appetit!

P.S. Actually we was switched to MCP73831 two years ago. This units from old devices that we’ve got for service.

Posted at 9am, March 22, 2015 | no comments; | Filed Under: Devices | read on

Various color versions of audio-guides for our partners in other cities

Every potential partner form other cities asking me, whether we have a color options of our magic GPS audio-guides? Eventually, once and for all to close this topic and to explore opportunities for expanding device’s aesthetic solutions at once, we have made five additional color species.

Electronic Tour Guide GPS city audio-guide, new color versions for our partners in other cities

Henceforth, our partners could choose not only the technical aspects, but also make their version of device more original. In accordance with the symbols and spirit of the city.

Posted at 9am, June 29, 2014 | no comments; | Filed Under: Devices, News | read on


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