August 23, 2011 | by Andrew Kameka
The Android Accessory Development Kit was the forgotten son after Google I/O 2011. When Google is announcing free music services, handing out limited edition Android Honeycomb tablets, and promising major changes for televisions, it’s hard to remember that it has a toolkit for people to turn their lightbulbs on and off.
However, not everyone has forgotten about the ADK, an Arduino-based hardware kit that developers can use to create accessories for Android products. With the ADK, creators can do things like link a robot to an Android phone as a remote control or create home lightning and entertainment system a resident can manage on his or her tablets.
Or they can create a baby-seat car simulator like Ben Heck did. Heck, a geek-famous modder, used the ADK to simulate driving in a car so parents don’t have to get up in the middle of the night and do laps around the block until their crying child falls back asleep. (In case you didn’t know, this is a trick parents often employ because babies tend to calm down and fall asleep when driving in a car.)
The recent episode of The Ben Heck Show provides a walkthrough for setting up the Android SDK and ADK, and shows Heck providing some tips about conceptualizing possible projects with the ADK. It also shows the car seat rocker’s creation process, so head over to Revision3 and watch how it’s created (spoiler alert: the final product isn’t shown. That will appear in a future episode.)