Funded! This project was successfully funded on March 23, 2012.

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World, meet NODE. With this modular, bluetooth enabled device, Variable Tech puts the power of practical sensors in your hands.

New Pledge options for Radiation sensor module and Carbon Monoxide module.

The radiation sensor module is a PIN diode radiation sensor with adjustable sensitivity levels. It is only meant for low levels of radiation ranging from 0.1uSv/h to 10uSv/h

The Carbon Monoxide module is an industrial grade electrochemical gas sensor with a 0 - 400 ppm concentration range.

NODE is iPad 3 compatible.

Compatibility list and other specs in FAQ (go to the bottom of the long page)

If you have any thoughts on how this future product can be improved, don't hesitate to send me a message.

Variable Technologies is proud to introduce our newest product: NODE. This device allows everyone, from the code-literate techie to the simple homeowner, to explore the fun and power of sensors. 

Bluetooth 4.0

A modular device, NODE communicates with smartphones via Bluetooth. Bluetooth requires less energy than Wifi and can send information directly to your Bluetooth enabled device. With new Bluetooth Low Energy, NODE can communicate with iPhone 4S and some Android phones at up to 50 meters with even less energy than conventional Bluetooth. With multiple NODEs networked in your home or office, you can control the different devices by your location.

Modules

Here are the basics of each NODE:

  • Arduino compatible
  • Lithium Polymer battery (650 mAh)
  • 12-14 hours battery life with continuous Bluetooth use
  • 2 MB memory
  • 3-axis accelerometer
  • 3-axis magnetometer
  • 3-axis gyroscope
  • Audio buzzer
  • Bluetooth 2.1 or Bluetooth Low Energy
  • 2 module ports
  • 2 dimmable blue LEDs
  • micro-USB for charging and firmware programming

But, we wanted even more from this device. We wanted to make a tool with endless uses. So, we made a handheld sensor device that's easy to carry, attractive, and modular. NODE comes fitted with three standard sensors, but can run two additional sensor units, or modules, when attached to either end. Since these modules are interchangeable, you can tailor your device to suit whatever situation you run into. 

Open API, Open Firmware, Open Source Code

The hardware of NODE is fixed, but we've left the firmware and API open and compatible with the Arduino platform. We'll also provide you with the free NODE demo app source code. At Variable, we're really big on making awesome tools and gadgets, but we're also big on collaboration. We have fantastic imaginations, but we can't imagine everything. That's why we've left lots of room for you to control the behavior and applications of these quality sensors. We want to see how you would use them. 

Kore

Each NODE comes stock with Kore. This is our fancy way of saying that the core of every NODE consists of three triaxial sensors: gyroscope, magnetometer, and accelerometer. You can use NODE as a level to hang pictures or a motion-based remote control. Use it to map motion or set it up to notify you when your dryer stops moving after finishing a cycle. NODE can tell if it's simply being jostled or if it's flipping from end to end. 

The first two interchangeable modules available from Variable are Clima and Luma. 

Clima

Whether you spend a lot of time on the trails or just want to manage your greenhouse better, Clima allows you to measure the climate around you. Sensing barometric pressure, wind speed, temperature, and humidity, NODE allows you to find your elevation while hiking up a mountain, determine windchill when you take the kids to the park, or see how well the landlord insulated the attic.

Luma

A state-of-the-art flashlight, Luma uses 8 LEDs to light the space around you. With the NODE app from Variable, you can select how many of those LEDs you want to turn on or off and even assign a flashing pattern. Use NODE as a simple compact flashlight around your car. Power outage? Turn on Luma from your smartphone instead of stumbling around your kitchen in the dark looking for that other flashlight.

Coming Soon

In the near future, Variable will be rolling out more modules, including infrared thermometers, infrared transceivers, radiation detectors, and chemical sensors. The fun, and usefulness, of NODE is just beginning. 

Oxa

After Kickstarter, we'll be releasing our line of gas sensor modules, called Oxa, perfect for many professional and scientific settings. Each Oxa module will detect and measure one of the following:

  • Carbon Monoxide (0 - 400 ppm)
  • Carbon Dioxide (500 ppm to 90%)
  • Chlorine (0 - 10 ppm)
  • Nitric Oxide (0 - 40 ppm)
  • Hydrogen (0 - 20 ppm)
  • Sulfur Dioxide (0 - 10 ppm)

Apps and Beyond

With NODE apps for iPhone and Android, we got the ball rolling. But trust us, we’ve barely skimmed across the surface. At Variable, we aim to give you the tools, then learn how they might be used. We put the challenge to you: what can you imagine? With the freedom of open API and the toolbelt that is NODE, what could you build? Anywhere you can imagine it, you can use it.

Imagine away.

FAQ

  • I believe the design is solid, but if there are any problems within 1 year of ship date, I will be happy to replace that unit.

    Last updated:
  • It is very expensive to produce something like this in small batches. $50,000 is the minimum to break-even on producing this (assuming I work for free).

    $20,000 will go to tooling to make the plastic enclosure and aluminum end caps

    $15,000 will go to circuit board, sensors, electrical components, battery, and packaging

    $10,000 will go to FCC and CE certification process

    $5,000 will go to Kickstarter and Amazon for fees

    Last updated:
  • Yes, each phone or computer can support simultaneous use of multiple NODE at once. The limitation is in the data rate that can be received by the phone or computer.

    Last updated:
  • Accelerometer: 3-axis

    +/-2g , 4g, and 8g ranges
    0.000061g resolution
    up to 120 samples/sec

    Max impact rating: 3,000g for 0.5ms or 10,000g for 0.1ms

    Magnetometer: 3-axis

    +/-1.3 to 8.1 gauss
    0.00004 gauss resolution
    up to 60 samples/sec

    Gyroscope: 3-axis

    250, 500, 2000 degrees per second ranges
    0.004 degrees per second resolution
    up to 120 samples/sec

    Maximum impact rating: 10,000g for 0.1ms

    Last updated:
  • for Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy the following devices are compatible:

    iPhone 4S, iPad 3, Macbook Pro (latest), Macbook Air (latest), Droid Razr, Asus Transformer Pad

    Bluetooth 2.1:

    Everything else with bluetooth

    EXCEPT for iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPod Touch, original iPad, and iPad 2

    Last updated:
  • just select the Clima + IR Thermometer pledge and add $25 for Luma

    Last updated:
  • Yes, NODE's bluetooth radio is FCC and CE certified and will be allowed to use in either market.

    Last updated:
373
Backers
$76,340
pledged of $50,000 goal
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  • Pledge $1 or more
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    77 backers

    Respect! And a big THANK YOU from George. Every bit helps bring NODE to the world.

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  • Pledge $20 or more
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    15 backers

    Get a Variable Technologies t-shirt that says "Gadgeteer". Show off your love for tech and new gadgets with this classy tee!

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  • Pledge $30 or more
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    8 backers

    For this level, you'll receive a unique combination flashdrive and miniature keychain tool with the Variable logo. This tool comes complete with the right size of screwdriver to remove the end caps on your NODE device when you interchange modules. Keep your files and your NODE tool stored on your keychain, ready whenever you need.

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    4 backers

    At this level, you'll be receiving the above mentioned "Gadgeteer" t-shirt and flashdrive keychain tool. Style? You got it.

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  • Pledge $175 or more
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    7 backers

    -FOR ALL SMARTPHONES- One NODE Kore with aluminum end caps (Bluetooth 2.1 version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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    5 backers

    -FOR iPHONE 4S- One NODE Kore with aluminum end caps (Bluetooth Low Energy version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $225 or more
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    26 backers

    -FOR ALL SMARTPHONES- One NODE bundle which includes Kore, one Luma module, and one Clima module (Bluetooth 2.1 version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $225 or more
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    32 backers

    -FOR iPHONE 4S- One NODE Kore bundle which includes one Luma module and one Clima module (Bluetooth Low Energy version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $225 or more
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    20 backers

    -FOR ALL SMARTPHONES except for iOS devices- One NODE bundle which includes Kore, one IR THERMOMETER module, and one Clima module (Bluetooth 2.1 version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $225 or more
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    37 backers

    -FOR iPHONE 4S and future iOS devices- One NODE Kore bundle which includes one IR THERMOMETER module and one Clima module (Bluetooth Low Energy version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $250 or more
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    57 backers

    -FOR iPHONE 4S and future iOS devices- One NODE Kore + one IR THERMOMETER module + one Clima module + one Luma module (Bluetooth Low Energy version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $350 or more
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    19 backers

    -FOR iPHONE 4S and future iOS devices- One NODE Kore + one RADIATION sensor module + one IR THERMOMETER module + one Clima module + one Luma module (Bluetooth Low Energy version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S. ***PLEASE NOTE THE LATER DELIVERY DATE IN SEPT. 2012

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  • Pledge $425 or more
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    4 backers

    Two NODE Kore bundles, both including Luma and Clima modules (specify bluetooth versions via message) + $20 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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    5 backers

    Two NODE Kore bundles, both including IR THERMOMETER and Clima modules (specify bluetooth versions via message) + $20 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $450 or more
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    1 backer

    Three NODE Kore only (specify bluetooth versions via message) + $20 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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    18 backers

    -FOR iPHONE 4S and future iOS devices- One NODE Kore + one RADIATION sensor module + one CARBON MONOXIDE gas sensor module + one IR THERMOMETER module + one Clima module + one Luma module (Bluetooth Low Energy version) + $15 for international shipping outside of U.S. ***PLEASE NOTE THE LATER DELIVERY DATE IN SEPT. 2012

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  • Pledge $599 or more
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    1 backer

    Three NODE Kore bundles, all three complete with Luma and Clima modules (specify bluetooth versions via message) + $20 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $599 or more
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    3 backers

    Three NODE Kore bundles, all three complete with IR THERMOMETER and Clima modules (specify bluetooth versions via message) + $20 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $799 or more
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    1 backer

    Get three NODE Kore bundles for some serious sensor fun and one prototype game controller module, turning your NODE into a motion-based joystick for gaming or a sophisticated remote (specify bluetooth versions via message) + $25 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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  • Pledge $1,999 or more
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    3 backers

    For the serious gadgeteers and tech developers, this is the super prize of Variable's tech! Two NODE Kore bundles with one prototype carbon monoxide gas sensor module, one prototype infrared thermometer module, one prototype game controller module, and one prototype radiation sensor module (specify bluetooth versions via message) + $30 for international shipping outside of U.S.

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Funding period

- (33 days)