Phant is a modular Node.js based data logging tool for collecting data from the Internet of Things (IoT). It is this open source software that powers data.sparkfun.com, an actively maintained free service by SparkFun Electronics.
I have been playing with the services at data.sparkfun.com with some of the IoT devices that I have created and must say the services are robust and reliable. Even streaming data from IoT hardware like Electric Imps and Arduinos is a cinch using Phant.
What is the technology behind Phant?
How is it different from any other data storage mechanism for IoT?
The Phant server is meant to handle large data sets of key-value pairs with very high efficiency differing from a conventional database mechanism. It also makes sense, since IoT devices push or pull very small amounts of data. Also unlike other database servers Phant is completely open source, by developers for developers. This enables hacking right from day one, with a little knowledge of Node.js.
The way to IoT bliss
There are two approaches to leverage Phant.
- Create an account at data.sparkfun.com
- Deploy Phant for yourself (It’s easier than you think!)
Can’t wait to get your IoT device talking to the cloud? Well, data.sparkfun.com has got you covered. It is a secure, robust Phant server provided by SparkFun Electronics and you can host your public/private data stream there.
It’s a two-step process
- Create a stream at data.sparkfun.com
- Push your data to the stream
Yes, it’s really that simple!
Once your stream is created you’ll get the following parameters:
- Public URL
- Public key (used to authenticate your data while streaming)
- Private key (sent through the URL to authenticate the request)
To send data from your device, just the hit the service with the parameters below.
Where the URL parameters after the private key are defined while creating your stream.
To get the data-stream back for reading, just visit the URL with your public key (JSON, CSN, RSS, Atom).
There you go, your IoT is now connected to the cloud. DOT
Deploying Phant yourself
$ npm install -g phant
Start the server:
Connect to the telnet manager:
$ telnet localhost 8081
The code and documentation can be found on GitHub at https://github.com/sparkfun/phant.