When Andy Proctor, a truck driver and web developer in the UK, was dissatisfied with his company’s tracking system, he hacked his truck.
Called the iDataTruck, it tweets the status of his truck directly to his office. (Follow it at @iDataTruck.) “The company does have a tracker system,” says Proctor, “but we still have to phone up and say whether we’ve got our box on or off, when we’ve been unloaded or loaded at the customer’s premises.”
Proctor used a Raspberry Pi B+ with Tweepy, plus a Wi-Fi dongle and physical buttons on a spare panel in the cab to send the tweets, and lights to indicate power and operability. (It sends emails too.)
“This is just my way of learning about the Pi, and using some skills I’ve got to create a practical application,” he says. His next project will replace the buttons with bar codes for a wider variety of messages.
Want to do it yourself? Head on over to Proctor’s website, where he has detailed his story and even included the code he used. He also has a YouTube video (see below). The big rig is optional — try it with your car, or even your bike, and let us know how it goes. (Send photos to firstname.lastname@example.org.)