Onion, with the unveiling of Onion Omega, aims to radically simplify and democratize the hardware prototyping and development process for the Internet of Things (IoT).
The Omega is a hardware development board designed especially for web developers with limited experience in hardware development. It is a tiny computer (1/4 the size of the Raspberry Pi) with built-in WiFi and Linux. The Omega allows software developers to create hardware projects in familiar environments, tools (SSH, Git and npm) and using high-level programming languages they are used to, such as Python, Node.js, PHP, etc.
The launch of Onion Omega is the first step in creating “The Invention Platform For The Internet Of Things”. The next step, which is already in progress, is to create a comprehensive set of tools, learning materials and and an integrated hardware/software ecosystem in order to foster an open and thriving developer community. Onion’s stated mission is to create tools that allow inventors of all walks of life to realize their vision and bring their creation to life.
Already affordably priced at $25USD, Omega developers can also harness the free Onion Cloud service to manage and control their creations with the Onion Console (a mobile inspired app-icon interface; a first for this product category) on their phone or computer. With the Onion App Store, developers can easily find, install and share apps written for IoT devices. Apps can range from the practical (ie. home automation, security monitoring, etc.) to the fun & games (ie. robots, drones, etc.).
Boken Lin, co-founder of Onion, comments: “IoT is projected to be a multi-trillion dollar industry by 2020, we at Onion believe that everyone, and not just a handful of people (with full-stack hardware AND software knowledge) and companies, should be able to participate in this amazing opportunity. Only by simplifying and democratizing, will we see some truly ingenious and innovative creations.”
The Onion Omega was made available for pre-sale via a Kickstarter campaign launched on March 23, 2015 and has already achieved it’s funding goal in less than 24 hours.
The Kickstarter campaign will feature several real-time interactive demos (robot arm, thermal printer that you can Tweet to & more!) and the main attraction will be the “Onion Ping Pong Blaster 2000”. A hand-made ping pong cannon (made with love and powered by the Onion Omega) that you can take control and shoot ping pong balls at various targets and even a real person – an Onion team member (the poor soul tasked to maintain & monitor the demos).
For more information, visit https://Onion.io/kickstarter