Cylon.JS in action Cylon.JS website screenshot

Cylon.js is a JavaScript framework for robotics, physical computing, and the Internet of Things using Node.js. It provides a simple, yet powerful way to create JavaScript robots that incorporate multiple, different hardware devices at the same time.

Cylon.JS

JavaScript robotics, by your command

Creating software for the Internet of Things seems to get easier every day, as new development tools make popular programming languages work with more and more connected devices. One of the latest additions is Cylon.JS, an open-source JavaScript framework designed for controlling robots, embedded sensors and IoT devices.

JavaScript is already hugely familiar to web developers and other programmers because it runs in just about every web browser and is used to make websites interactive (think of the chat boxes on social media sites that let you send and receive instant messages with friends, without reloading the page). It’s also fairly easy to learn the basics, even for amateurs.

Cylon.JS is built on Node.JS, a JavaScript framework used for many web apps that provides common ground for IoT applications—such as the ability to simultaneously send, receive and process many messages from many sources. Named for the science fiction cyborgs of Battlestar Galactica, Cylon.JS supports a wide variety of drones, robotic toys, wearables, smart home devices, IoT prototyping and embedded computing modules, and cloud-based analytics and messaging platforms. It lets programmers create powerful interactions between users, devices and services with just a few lines of code.

For instance, you can set up a Pebble smartwatch to act as a controller for “robots” (connected devices) like a Nest thermostat or Phillips Hue lightbulb. Or you can build your own projects by wiring physical sensors to development boards like Arduino or Tessel, and program them with Cylon.JS to interact with other devices independently.

Cylon.JS was created by The Hybrid Group, a Los Angeles software consultancy, with input from an open community of developers around the world. The first stable version of the framework was released last week, and you can find the source code on GitHub.

Related: JavaScript and the Internet of Things

By
Ted Burnham

Professional Combobulator

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