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Interactions Across Multiple Devices & Hardware

ProtoPie Connect allows you to have prototypes communicate with each other across multiple devices, and have them communicate with hardware and APIs.

New to ProtoPie Connect? Learn more about how to get started.

Using Send & Receive

All communication between prototypes and ProtoPie Connect happens using the Send response and Receive trigger. When a message is sent, ProtoPie Connect relays that message to all prototypes added in ProtoPie Connect.

  • The message acts as the identifier to match the Send response and Receive trigger across prototypes. Only when a Receive trigger has the same message as the Send response (and vice-versa), communication between the two can happen.
  • Use ProtoPie Studio as a channel.
  • Sending a value with a message is optional and not required.
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The Send response and Receive trigger can be used for other purposes and without ProtoPie Connect. Learn more about Send & Receive.

Debugging Messages

In the debug view, see all messages sent among prototypes, bridge apps, and hardware. For debugging purposes, try sending a test message and value to see if they can be received properly.

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Creating Interactions with Hardware

Prototypes created with ProtoPie can communicate with any hardware. The underlying principle behind interactions with hardware is the same as prototypes communicating with each other across multiple devices.

  • Use the Send response and Receive trigger to send and receive messages.
  • Use messages (via Socket.IO) to communicate signals between hardware and prototypes.

There are three different ways hardware can communicate with ProtoPie.

  1. Directly via Socket.IO
  2. Via bridge app
  3. Via serial (USB) connection for Arduino
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Connecting Hardware Directly via Socket.IO

It is possible for some hardware to communicate via Socket.IO directly (without a bridge app).

  • Connect the hardware directly to ProtoPie Connect its Socket.IO server. This server is indicated using the IP address with port number 9981.
  • All Socket.IO messages sent, ProtoPie Connect will relay them to the prototypes.
  • Prototypes receiving these messages can respond to it. Some hardware supports bidirectional communication, meaning that prototypes can send messages to the hardware.

Learn more about Socket.IO.

Connecting Hardware via Bridge App

Connect any hardware via a bridge app as long as the signals can be converted to Socket.IO messages.

A bridge app converts hardware signals into Socket.IO messages for ProtoPie to interpret. Through Socket.IO, ProtoPie Connect can interpret events and data from the hardware.

  • Connect the bridge app directly to ProtoPie Connect its Socket.IO server. The server is indicated using the IP address with port number 9981.
  • All Socket.IO messages sent, ProtoPie Connect will relay them to the prototypes.
  • Prototypes receiving these messages can respond to them. Some hardware supports bidirectional communication, meaning that prototypes can send messages to the hardware. This is only possible if the bridge app can convert Socket.IO messages into signals the hardware can interpret.

Learn more about bridge apps.

Connecting Arduino via Serial (USB) Connection

For Arduino hardware, it is possible to have prototypes communicate—without a bridge app—via serial (USB) connection.

Learn more about connecting Arduino to ProtoPie Connect.

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