The missing link
Throughout the book, one frustrating thing was repeated references to the accompanying website, which made me go back and check every page I'd already read. With the simpler examples earlier on in the book, it's not so important, but as you get to longer bits of code, it's helpful to have some downloads.
However, despite references to a website throughout the book, none of them gives the URL, and in fact the downloads weren't made available by the publisher until some time after the book was published – something we waited for during this review. You can find them now here.
Code can be downloaded for the examples, and includes Java as well as Python
What you'll get is a zip file containing code organised by chapter, which, while helpful, is something of a disappointment. It would have been good to see a proper dedicated website with links to some of the resources mentioned in the book, to avoid typing in some of the very lengthy URLs. In some cases, with the code now available online, I would have preferred the book to explain the protocols and algorithms being used in more detail rather than just providing the listings.
Who's it for?
Though some of the projects in the book may not necessarily appeal to everyone – electric garage door openers are rather rarer here than in the US – the principles of interfacing the real world to a computer are important to understand. And this book does attempt to show how that can be done, from both a software and a hardware side.
Projects in the book start simple, and will hopefully inspire you to do more with your Pi
If you have a Raspberry Pi that you've tired of, or you want some inspiration to start playing with an Arduino, this book could well provide that inspiration. It won't, however, teach you to code from scratch, and sometimes the examples are perhaps a little too lacking in specifics for the novice who can't easily read code. Overall, though, considering the range of tools and techniques covered, it does a pretty good job, and at a decent price. ®
Title The Internet of Things: Do-It-Yourself at Home Projects for Arduino, Raspberry Pi and BeagleBone Black
Publisher McGraw Hill
Price £13.59 (Paperback)
More info Publication web site