Introducing the Electric Imp
What’s most notable is that it does it securely… very securely. You may remember the October 2016 Mirai malware attack that crippled large segments of the net. Mirai took control of millions of unsecured IoT devices and turned them into cyber weapons. The security structure of the Imp gives it immunity to such an attack. The Imp OS gets updated automatically, which means that you don’t have to worry about what the next clever malware attack might be. The folks at Electric Imp stay awake nights worrying about security so you don’t have to. Imp security is so good that it’s the first device to be certified by Underwriter’s Laboratories under UL® 2900-2-2 (Standard for Software Cybersecurity for Network-Connectable Devices, Part 2-2: Particular Requirements for Industrial Control Systems). Notice that it’s UL certified for Industrial Control systems where cyber-attacks have grave consequences. You won’t find that in a Raspberry Pi or Arduio (and besides, they cost more).
For our WxImp project we’ll be using a developer edition Electric Imp that comes as part of the Imp Explorer. As of this writing it’s about $25 on Amazon. It’s a wonderful base for all sorts of IoT projects. It can be powered by 3 AA cells or through a USB mini connector. There are built-in sensors for temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure as well as a 3-axis accelerometer, an LED and connectors for Neopixel LED arrays. There are also four Grove connectors for the full range of IoT add-ons that Arduio and Raspberry Pi fans are so fond of… but I digress. For this project we’ll be using one of the Grove connectors for our anemometer rotor sensor (a small DC motor), I have plans to try using another for a wind-vane sensor to capture wind direction, but that’s phase two of this project.
To learn how to put the WxImp code on an imp explorer see the page about Loading the Code.