Does the puck support mesh networking over Bluetooth?
Not 'standard' BLE meshing, no - although you can still create your own mesh network using BLE advertising if you wanted to.
Until recently I'm pretty sure there wasn't any standard form of meshing, which makes it basically useless (sure, your Pucks can mesh, but if they won't talk to your phone or PC...). I think that may have changed now though.
It's still potentially a big tricky as meshing will probably hurt battery life quite a lot.
I forgot about the battery life :-(
Bluetooth LE: mesh standard is now announced:
I'll have to look into it at some point - assuming it is supported by Nordic's softdevice it could definitely be added, but would possibly have to be a separate firmware.
But until it's supported by routers or will work with existing Bluetooth LE devices like phones and PCs, there's going to be an extremely limited market for it, and it's definitely not a priority for me...
Although obviously that doesn't stop anyone from playing around and implementing it themselves, or if it's needed for a business I'm open to consultancy work around it.
Hi Gordon, there are Firmware Updates including mesh functionality from Nordic. Maybe the firmware for the pucks could also be updated for BLE 5 mesh?
Do you mean this? https://www.nordicsemi.com/eng/Products/Bluetooth-low-energy/nRF5-SDK-for-Mesh
It's still an Alpha release - and I'm wary of putting too much effort into targeting those. In the past, it's been very difficult to change code written for one Nordic release for another because what's in the example applications seems to change a lot and the changes aren't easy to follow when you've integrated it into your code - so I'd rather wait for something more stable.
The required softdevice is the one Puck.js uses, so it would be possible to compile a firmware - however as far as I can tell it's not a small change at all... It basically involves throwing away all Espruino's existing Bluetooth LE code and starting from scratch.
Also, as I said above - until some other device supports mesh, I think it's of limited use. You program Puck.js wirelessly - so if the only other device that can talk to your Puck.js is another Puck, it makes it quite difficult unless you're willing to physically solder a USB-TTL converter to your Puck, which I doubt most people will bother with.
Hi yes, we have the new BLE5 Pre Eval Kit from Nordic and will start first testing with Mesh in 1-2 weeks. If you like i can keep you updated.
I think there is a hell of opportunities with BLE Mesh. And if the pucks would fit into a heterogen mesh topology the use cases for them will increase.
There's no reason why the Pucks wouldn't work, but I do wonder what the impact on battery usage will be - I guess we'll see.
The private key for the Puck's firmware updates is in the repo, so once you're set up building code for Nordic it'd be trivial to copy the key over and then build some of Nordic's examples to work on Puck.js
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