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Some books you just cannot put down and we are hoping that our new Signal K App for the Kindle will have the same effect. With their perfect sunlight readability, low price and extremely large user base, we thought an Amazon Kindle would make a great low power instrument display for a boat.

Every Kindle has an “Experimental Web Browser”, which although pretty poor for normal web browsing, does support Javascript which is the language that most modern HTML5 web pages use. After some positive initial tests to see if it would be good enough for our needs, Digital Yacht developed a simple Instrument Display Web App that would read Signal K data from our new iKommunicate gateway and display it on your Kindle.

Every second, the App “grabs” the latest instrument data from iKommunicate, which is connected to the boat’s NMEA2000 or NMEA0183 networks and displays it as either individual “jumbo” displays or a dual line or quad view (see image) display.

In keeping with the “Open Source” nature of Signal K and to encourage other developers to take what we have done and expand on it, we are releasing the source code of the Kindle Web App on our iKommunicate GitHub pages. For existing iKommunicate users, who would like to use this new Kindle App, you can download the new SD Card image and install it following the instructions here.

NOTEBy default a Kindle will check the wireless network it is connected to see if it has an internet connection and if it does not, it will disconnect from the wireless network. This is not great behaviour on a boat that may or may not be connected to the internet and so a little tweak needs to be made to the Kindle to disable this internet check.

Simply connect your Kindle to your computer using a Micro USB Cable and it will appear as a USB Disk Drive (mass storage device). Then you need to create a file in the USB root folder called WIFI_NO_NET_PROBE which does not need a file extension and can be a completely empty file, it just needs to be in this folder, as shown below.


Once you have copied the file on to your Kindle, restart the device and it will now connect to your wireless network even if there is no internet connection.


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