Using the Aardvark I2C/SPI Host Adapter, How Can I Best Communicate to an I2C Device in Binary Code Format?

Question from the Customer:

I am using the Aardvark I2C/SPI Host Adapter as an I2C master. I am trying to send a read request to an I2C device sensor, which communicates in binary code. Is there a simple way to send a command in the binary format? I am using the Control Center Serial Software GUI, which only seems to accept hexadecimal (hex) inputs.

Response from Technical Support:

Thanks for your question! When using the Aardvark host adapter and Control Center Serial Software, data messages and the load data files can only be done in the hex format. However, other software applications are available - you can read and write I2C/SPI data with the Aardvark host adapter using the Control Center Serial Software, the Flash Center Software  or the Aardvark Software API.  In your case, we recommend using the Aardvark Software API,  which can be customized to interface with specified data formats, including binary.

Aardvark Software SPI Can Be Customized for Multiple Data Formats Figure 1: Aardvark Software SPI - Customize for Multiple Data Formats

Summaries of the key features of the software applications are listed below:

  • The Aardvark Software API is used to control the Aardvark adapter, and to write a custom program for your specific requirements. The API comes with support for multiple operating systems (Windows, Linux and Mac) and multiple languages (C, Python, Visual Basic and C#), and includes software examples. We recommend using the Python bindings as it is a simple language, and is a good option for scripting.
  • The Control Center Serial Software provides full access to all of the Aardvark adapter functionalities, and eliminates the need to write custom software to control the Aardvark adapter. It has also the batch scripting capability when used with the Aardvark XML Batch Script Language.
  • The Flash Center Software provides mechanism to quickly erase, program, and verify I2C and SPI based EEPROM and flash memory Chips. It has an extensible XML parts library with built-in support for EEPROMs and serial flash chips from major manufacturers. Supporting new devices,  we continuously create and add new parts to the library. The Flash Center Software has options to use hex, S-Record or binary data formats, but only for how data is stored; the data formats do not apply to communicating with devices.

For additional information, please refer to the following documents:

We hope this answers your questions. If you have other questions about our host adapters or other Total Phase products, feel free to email us at sales@totalphase.com, or if you already own one of our devices and have a technical question, please submit a request for technical support.

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