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iButton internals

I’ve written in the past about iButtons and my attempts to waterproof them. Although iButton temperature dataloggers are fairly well sealed, they are not waterproof. But if you know an old person that used iButtons in the late 90s or early 2000s, they might claim that iButtons are absolutely waterproof.

It turns out that iButtons are one of those rare things in life that really were better when you were a kid. In the old days they could be put out in the ocean for weeks or months, completely bare, and most of them would survive … Continue Reading

Waterproofing iButtons, and reading waterproofed iButtons

iButton temperature dataloggers are tiny, long-lived temperature sensors that are great for all kinds of environmental and biological monitoring, but they’re a long ways from waterproof. Old farts will regale you with tales of a bygone era when you could leave a bare iButton submerged in seawater for months at a time without problems, but those days are long gone, due to a re-design in the early 2000’s. Nowadays you can’t even get away with leaving them in moist soil without eventual water intrusion, component failure, and data loss. But given their tiny size and relatively low price … Continue Reading

Another R + iButton script

Previously I’ve detailed R scripts that automate the launching and downloading Maxim iButton thermochron data loggers. I’m typically doing the launching and downloading at separate times in my workflow, since I have duplicate iButtons to swap out, so separate scripts work for me. Ryan Knowles recently contributed a combined version of these scripts that downloads and immediately re-launches each iButton. This is useful if you want to retrieve iButtons and then stick the same units back out in the field as soon as possible. As usual, … Continue Reading

R scripts for downloading iButton Thermochron dataloggers

Last time, I posted some R code to help quickly launch many iButton Thermochron temperature dataloggers with the same mission parameters. The R code makes use of a publicly-available command line utility released by the iButton’s manufacturer, Maxim.  Of course, Maxim also has a command line utility for downloading the data from those iButtons that you launched already. The code below will make use of that program to download an iButton, give the file a unique name of your choosing, parse the data out into a simple comma-separated-value file (for easy opening in R or Excel), and then … Continue Reading

Launching iButton Thermochrons with the help of R

Maxim’s DS1921G iButton Thermochron temperature dataloggers are little silver doo-dads the size of a large watch battery that can record up to 2048 time-stamped temperature values. The internal battery is usually good for a few years of use. Maxim supplies a Java-based application for talking to iButtons to start recording or to download results. This program, coupled with a USB-based iButton adapter, works fine when you’re just dealing with a few iButtons. But I have more than a few iButtons, so I used R to write a script to launch multiple iButtons quickly.

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