October 30, 2015

271 words 2 mins read

Quick First Look: Onion Omega

Back in April I backed a Kickstarter for the Onion Omega. It’s another new hardware development platform centered around the Internet Of Things. While I’ve already got Raspberry Pi and Arduino aplenty, the Omega caught my eye as being a really nice blend of both worlds. Arduino is actually very hard to use for standalone IoT because it’s not fast enough to support SSL; it also requires you program in C. Raspberry PI is designed to be a full computer; it isn’t “cheap” ($40 times a number of devices adds up in cost) and is battery intensive (comparatively). The Onion Omega picks up a lot of strengths from both sides of the spectrum as it’s a full Linux machine (meaning I can write in NodeJS), fast enough to support SSL, tiny, AND has built-in WiFi.

The unit I ordered just arrived today which was exciting to see. However I had selected the battery dock and GPS add-on rewards, in addition to the Omega, both of which were delayed for various reasons. Not the end of the world, but it will limit the tinkering I can do for some time. As a random tip for anyone considering running their own hardware-related Kickstarter: Please include some instructions on how to get started. There was nothing in the shipping envelope other than what you see to the left and I couldn’t even readily find the instructions on their website. Eventually I googled up the answer and found the Onion.io Get Started guide, but that seems like an oversight for something so important.

Next week we’ll have some code! Maybe even an AWS Lambda integration?