The Photon is an open source, inexpensive, programmable, WiFi-enabled module for building connected projects and prototypes. Powered by an ARM Cortex-M3 microcontroller and a Broadcom WiFi chip, the Photon is just as happy plugged into a hobbyist's breadboard as it is into a product rolling off of an assembly line.
While the Photon--and its accompanying cloud platform--is designed as a ready-to-go foundation for product developers and manufacturers, it's great for Maker projects, as you'll see in this book. You'll learn how to get started with the free development tools, deploy your sketches over WiFi, and build electronic projects that take advantage of the Photon's processing power, cloud platform, and input/output pins. What's more, the Photon is backward-compatible with its predecessor, the Spark Core.
Chapter 1The Spark Photon
The Internet of Things
Sparks in the Clouds
Other IoT Platforms
A Tour of the Spark Photon
The Spark Core vs. Spark Photon
Chapter 2Quick Start
Connecting to WiFi
Controlling Pins with the Tinker App
Project 1. Blink the Tiny Blue LED
Project 2. Control the Photon’s LED
Chapter 3Programming the Photon
The Web IDE
Coding an App
Project 3. Morse Code Flasher
How Breadboard Works
Attaching an LED
Project 4. Morse Flasher (External LED)
Attaching a Switch
Project 5. Morse Flasher with Switch
Chapter 5The Internet of Things
Project 6. Control an LED Over the Internet
Running Functions from a Web Page
Project 7. Control Relays from a Webpage
Project 8. Morse Code Text Messages
Project 9. Measuring Light over the Internet
Project 10. Measuring Temperature over the Internet
Dr. Simon Monk has a degree in Cybernetics and Computer Science and a PhD in Software Engineering. Simon spent several years as an academic before he returned to industry, co-founding the mobile software company Momote Ltd. He has been an active electronics hobbyist since his early teens. Simon is now a full time author and his books include 'Getting Started with IOIO', '30 Arduino Projects for the Evil Genius', '15 Dangerously Mad Projects for the Evil Genius' and 'Arduino + Android Projects for the Evil Genius'.
Comments about oreilly Getting Started with the Photon:
I have been able to follow most of the examples. The ones I haven't been able to follow are mostly due to my time limitations and not problems with the examples or the content.
The only negative I can think of is that I had to use my Cores for this book as I hadn't yet received my Photon. The Cores do work as explained in the book. The trouble was getting the cores setup. By following the instructions, I could not get either core to "shout rainbows" using the Tinker app. One of the cores would still respond to the Tinker app as it had been connected to previously. The other one, which had never been connected prior to this, would simply not respond.
I followed the extended instructions in the book to connect the cores using the USB connection. Again, the Particle software would simply hang when it tried to associate my cores to my account.
I found the solution was to simply not let the Particle software to make any assumptions. When it asked if I wanted to remain logged in, I had to tell it No and have it re-log me in. This same type of response was used for all responses. Then suddenly, both my cores were "Shouting rainbows". After that mess, everything worked as it should have.
Now I don't feel this difficulty was an issue with the book or its contents. But I can't be the only one having problems like this. I would have liked to have had a bit more troubleshooting for this part of the process. It was incredibly frustrating.
I hope this review proves useful.
Bottom Line Yes, I would recommend this to a friend