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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #1
Jaak, I believe you said you didn't get the Nav, is that right? If so, that's too bad. I was hoping to hear if anyone has tried to hack the nav software by reverse engineering a reprogramming CD.

I ordered the updated DVD to prepare for an upcoming cross country tip, and found that they use a CD to update the NAV software before you can use the updated DVD. They even publish a big warning that you should not attempt to play the reprogramming CD on an audio CD player because of risk to damage to your speakers and ears.

If the NAV software is flashable, I'd love to replace it with a tiny instance of Linux that runs open source navigation software, assuming of course, that the DVD flash is running an OS and the application. Beats paying $185 a year for a new DVD with improvements that basically only reflect changes that **I** report to zenrin (being the only one geeky enough in my neighborhood)

They should really institute a method for earning a free update by reporting a certain number of verifiable inconsistencies. I had to beg them to get rid of an airport near my house that had been gone 5 years before I bought the car! Next year I hope they include the new highway that was finished 3 years ago :11:
 

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I agree the data is less than complete, but is very good for high density areas. Certainly a case of pleasing most of the people most of the time.

I have no idea what the processer is in the Nav system, and since Linux is focused mainly on Intel platforms, there is no way of knowing if this is even feasable, without having one to tear apart.

It might be easier to replace the Nav system with an Intel based system, keeping the display and it's controller, but adding a touch screen.

Certainly a great idea, but one that would require a fairly large investment to achieve.

While a lot of it is "half-baked" there are some really good ideas as well on www.mp3car.com, if you want a taste of what's already being done. You might want to have a look, at least for interest sake.
 

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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #3
jaak said:
and since Linux is focused mainly on Intel platforms
Actually, I'm an IT Architect at IBM, and I specialize in Linux. Linux runs on over 25 chip platforms, including ARM (my guess for the NAV CPU). One of the reasons IBM loves Linux so much is because it lets us sell more across our entire hardware line -- from Intel to Power to mid-range to mainframe. That, and the fact that once you get software to compile under Linux on one hardware platform, its usually just a recompile away from running on any other platform. Finally, Informix was widely quoted years ago when they ported their Solaris version to Linux on Intel. They were asked how difficult it was, and a Vice President of something or other replied "We just typed 'make'."

Any questions about Linux? ask me :)
 

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EasternPA said:
I ordered the updated DVD to prepare for an upcoming cross country tip, and found that they use a CD to update the NAV software before you can use the updated DVD. They even publish a big warning that you should not attempt to play the reprogramming CD on an audio CD player because of risk to damage to your speakers and ears.
Eastern PA, after using the CD to update the Nav Software, did you notice any new features in any of the trip computer settings, or in the Nav settings? If so could you list some of the changes here and let us know if you think the update was worth the money? Did you get it directly from Zenrin?
 

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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #5
Re: Re: Hack the NAV?

lnichols said:
after using the CD to update the Nav Software, did you notice any new features in any of the trip computer settings, or in the Nav settings?...[do] you think the update was worth the money? Did you get it directly from Zenrin?
Hi, yes I bought it directly from Zenrin. Around $180 shipped, I believe. I didn't notice any functional updates to the operation, but their website does show updates to the navigation data. They have various levels of navigation data quality, and their website shows what kind of functionality you can expect while in each area. The data varies from full door-to-door routing, to only routing on county roads, to only routing on interstates.

Something that was good for me was that they upgraded navigation quality in both of the carolinas (helpful when driving to florida a couple times a year) and also a few states I plan to drive through on the way to cali.. mostly new mexico and arizona.

Worth it? Hmm.. I'll tell you when I get back from Cali around June 14th. As I opened this thread with, there would be no question if I could flash it to run Linux and use open source navigation data. In the meantime, if you really want to MAKE IT worth it, go to zenrin.com and fill out data error reports as much as you can to help them keep the data up to date.
 

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Hey, just found this forum. I am another geeky guy in Warminster. I'll start reporting stuff to Zenrin too. I don't know what version of the DVD I have in my car but its 1 year old now.
 

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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #7
jtemail said:
Hey, just found this forum. I am another geeky guy in Warminster. I'll start reporting stuff to Zenrin too. I don't know what version of the DVD I have in my car but its 1 year old now.
Hey jt.. welcome.. long time lurker (god I hate that word) new poster, here. It'll be good to know more folks from E.PA will be helping to flesh out navigation details for Zenrin. I like to believe I played a role in finally getting rid of the old Buehl Field airport in Langhorne for this year's edition. :) Unfortunately, I kept forgetting to tell them about the new Route 29 tunnel by the Trenton Thunder, and didn't get it in in time for this year's release.

Just how geeky is geeky? :cool:
 

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NO-MO-SNOW
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jaak said:
While a lot of it is "half-baked" there are some really good ideas as well on www.mp3car.com, if you want a taste of what's already being done. You might want to have a look, at least for interest sake.
Thanks jaak, I spent my whole lunch break thinking about integrating an xbox running linux into my car...updates coming soon.
 

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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #9
Snow MO said:


Thanks jaak, I spent my whole lunch break thinking about integrating an xbox running linux into my car...updates coming soon.
In the middle of hacking my xbox myself, but hadn't considered putting it in in the Mo. I guess if Jaak figures out the pinout for the upgraded LCD :2:, then I would most definitely consider running my hacked xbox up there.
 

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EasternPA said:


Actually, I'm an IT Architect at IBM, and I specialize in Linux. Linux runs on over 25 chip platforms, including ARM (my guess for the NAV CPU). One of the reasons IBM loves Linux so much is because it lets us sell more across our entire hardware line -- from Intel to Power to mid-range to mainframe. That, and the fact that once you get software to compile under Linux on one hardware platform, its usually just a recompile away from running on any other platform. Finally, Informix was widely quoted years ago when they ported their Solaris version to Linux on Intel. They were asked how difficult it was, and a Vice President of something or other replied "We just typed 'make'."

Any questions about Linux? ask me :)
OK, I don't normally respond without reading the rest of the thread, and I may have to go back and edit this, but...

1) Wow, it's been a few years since I've done any Linux, but I always thought that it should be processor portable due to it's design. But I didn't want to even mention that, because I had no idea on your background and it just seemed like a headache to even start talking about it.

2) You're my kind of guy!!!! Now I wish I had the system, I'd crack it open, and it would find itself with a Logic Analyser and scope on it before it had any idea what was going on....

OK, I better read the rest of the thread, but yeah, that would be awesome... Load Linux on there and trash the Nissan OS... Oh yeah...

I agree, I bet it's ARM based... Although I wonder how much of it is Nissan, how much is Clarion and how much is provided. It might be interesting to see if there's detail for OEM's on Zenrin's site.
 

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OK, Linux on an Xbox? Thats just too cool!!! I missed that, as I've not had the time to really wade through the other forum.

I have theories on how to connect to the colour LCD, but since I don't have one, it's tough for me to really work it through.

The other thing that's a hassle with hacking the car, is having to use it too. If I could pull the components and put them on my bench, it would be easier.... And my wife likes to put her car on the other side of the garage, so it's tough to kick her out so I can permanently set up a bench next to the MO.

Although, this does have me thinking. I've been wanting to get one of those tool boxes on wheels. I suppose it would look cool with a Logic Analyser and scope on top... (Geek alert!):D

Hacking an Xbox sounds like fun... I've also got an old HP ePC which has a CD drive in it, and I've been thinking of using it for the car as it runs off 12 volts and it's really small!
 

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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #12
How about a junkyard?

jaak said:


2) You're my kind of guy!!!! Now I wish I had the system, I'd crack it open, and it would find itself with a Logic Analyser and scope on it before it had any idea what was going on....
I've often thought (on your behalf) that one thing that's true about cars is that the day after the first one is released to the general public, totalled ones start showing up in junkyards. It might be worth your while to contact some junkyards and see if you can find any totalled Murano's with NAV. They may be willing to sell you the upgraded screen if you tear it out of the dash yourself.

I'd bet one week's salary (a catchy phrase around here) that if one of us mailed you an upgraded screen ripped out of a totalled car, you'd figure out the pinouts, drive levels, and maybe even devise an adapter to convert vga input to drive the screen.

My good friend has been restoring a 1984 RX-7 and we've gone junkyard hunting.
 

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I've thought about that too, but also figured most junkyards are savvy enough these days to know what this stuff is worth...

However, I'd like to be wrong!

Hmmm Maybe it's worth a poke around...

I'd bet one week's salary (a catchy phrase around here) that if one of us mailed you an upgraded screen ripped out of a totalled car, you'd figure out the pinouts, drive levels, and maybe even devise an adapter to convert vga input to drive the screen.
And who would be foolish enough to bet against you...:p
 

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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #14
jaak said:
figured most junkyards are savvy enough these days to know what this stuff is worth...
True, and while a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, hopefully they could be convinced that the full NAV system is useless without the GPS unit itself, the GPS antenna, **AND** the VDC option.. I'd hope they'd give someone a break just for ripping the screen out alone, since there's no hope of ripping out the entire NAV system.

Of course, you are right in that even screen is worth a couple hundred $$. I think it can be done.
 

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Well, I'll have to poke around... We'll see!

Now if I put bluetooth on a Car PC, then it could talk to my iPaq and Phone.... :D
 

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NO-MO-SNOW
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I'm thinking we need a thread about all of the geeky stuff that we want to do to our rides. Obviously there are a ton of technologically resourceful people here and I think that if we all listed our ideas we would start seeing some pretty decked out high-tech rides here.

P.S. The girlfriend digs the idea of an x-box in the car! :29:
 

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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #17
jaak said:
Now if I put bluetooth on a Car PC, then it could talk to my iPaq and Phone
Yes bt would be incredible.. I drool whenever I see that ad for the Acura TL where the driver finds a nearby hotel by voice command in the nav and then dials the hotel also by voice command, but actually using his bluetooth phone to provide the dialing platform and speakerphone functionality. Talk about a SWEET setup.

But alas, I use Nextel, and they don't even have bluetooth phones in the pipeline. To them, bluetooth means connecting a bt headphone "server" to your headset port, using a bt headset, and then configuring your phone to auto answer after a certain number of rings. GIVE ME A BREAK.
 

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Here, I'm on Bell Mobility. While I believe CDMA is a superiour cellular technology, the selection of handsets available from this service provider, is terrible. Even the Motorola 270C I bought two years ago had the Bluetooth disabled, which really upset me.

So I'm switching to GSM so I'm not forced into any specific hardware.

I noticed the Xbox has USB, so I would think putting bluetooth in, wouldn't be tough, as long as someone's coded it for a BT USB module. I've got one that even allows my Wintel pc to be a bluetooth headset, so the capability for handsfree is there...

If only I didn't have so much work right now! Things will lighten up, come June.

I did have to laugh, I've been looking at Xboxs now....:)
 

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NO-MO-SNOW
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jaak said:
I did have to laugh, I've been looking at Xboxs now....:)
If you did buy one and didn't put it in your car, at least buy HALO and HALO2 when it comes out. Initially, HALO was the whole reason I bought the system and it was worth every penny.

A good XBOX mod site is http://www.xbox-scene.com/
 

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Major Geek
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Discussion Starter #20
My original post, or something like it: I can't believe it, but I never even considered the fact that it would be easy for Microsoft to work up a bluetooth adapter for the XBox to support wireless controllers or accessories. It could be nice and small and plug right into an open controller port like the IR receiver for their DVD playback kit. Yes, the ports are electrically true USB ports, but you would either a) have to somehow get a bluetooth driver from Microsoft patched into the XBox, or b) (probably much easier) connect any old bluetooth USB adapter to an XBox hacked to run Linux (http://xbox-linux.sf.net) using the XBox<->USB adapter cable from Lik-sang.


And your reply: I like the idea of attaching the SAT input connector to one from the Murano and using the radio controls and sound input. But I don't recall seeing a serial port in the Xbox. Hmmm... A USB to serial converter won't work, because it batches the serial data. At least the ones I've tried, do. And is there a navigation system for Linux?
A USB to serial converter won't work, because it batches the serial data

On a related note, I just ran my first wardriving session today, and found a serial<->usb adapter that works great at transmitting GPS data from my wife's Nextel phone. I also have GPS in my i730, but through a little research, I found out that Motorola disabled the ability to transmit NMEA data through their USB cables. Apparently, the NMEA standard requires NMEA data to be transmitted over serial lines. I either need to get the serial cable for my i730 or cut my USB cable open and solder a jumper wire to short pin 4 to the shell. (I'm also a ham radio op in another life.)

I ran my first session this morning without GPS just to make sure it works with the integrated WiFi on my new Thinkpad. Then, I did the research on getting GPS data from Nextel phones, and picked up the adatper at Best Buy. Took my wife back out with me for about 90 minutes in the afternoon, and SHE LOVED IT!! She absolutely can't wait to wardrive more neighborhoods.

And is there a navigation system for Linux?

Check out GPS Drive
 
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