Frank's 2007 VW Golf
Welcome! My name is Frank and I am a Software Engineer / Car Nut. I've been thinking about doing some custom computer work in my '07 Golf for some time now, and have finally committed.
My initial starting point is going to be the creation of a .NET based library that can be used for doing communications on an OBDII bus with ELM327 chipset based scan tools. I JUST ordered my OBDII to USB adapter on E-Bay on the advice of Jon Oxer (see Jon's RX-8 in the project cars section!) and saved myself $100 by not buying something like what is available from ScanTool, LLC. One thing to note, some scan tool manufacturers also make software available with their hardware, and that software sometimes is coded to only work with their hardware, so something you buy from E-Bay may not work with other manufacturers scan tool software (once again, thanks Jon!).
Decision Making - What sort of system should I use for this?
Aside from reading and recording various telemetry available from the vehicle and controlling various powered systems, I also plan on providing a beefed up multimedia system complete with a 7" touch screen to go in the dash. Currently, for initial development, I plan on using one of my laptops for initial development of the OBDII .NET library that I want to put together, but I will end up buying a smaller form factor PC to use in my car as the permanent solution. I have been looking into the Pico ITX build kits available from VIA. These can be purchased on E-Bay for a decent price, and are very small (100mm x 72mm). I am considering mounting the PC somewhere up inside the dash, and as such, this small solution would probably be my best bet.
That's it from me for now. Check back in a few weeks when I have my scan tool and am communicating on the OBDII bus in my car!