Simply put, they have replaced the 'radio-wave' transceivers that we are used to with conventional 'radio-controlled' toys with 'micro-wave' transceivers. So rather than send signals on a specific frequency they were using a their own iDEN telecomms network. The mobile phone is running a Java app that provides the user with choices for Forward, Reverse, Left, Right, Move arm etc. This was used to demonstrate the 'always on' idea and how Java can be used on mobile devices to control appliances such as coookers, televisions etc. Not really any major trickery. Being able to turn on your oven whilst travelling home, or close the curtains whilst 200miles away has always be something that we have been striving for.
The follwoing link goes in to it a little more, but not too a great depth.
Sys Eng Internet Services
Originally posted by Drew Lane:
I was reading an article the other day that said something about
a demo that someone set up a JavaOne 2001, where the Motorola
i50 was used to remotely control a robot?
Does anyone know anything about this?
How would the commands be sent?
Over the Network?
I actually saw this very demo. (Maybe it was a different company, rather than Motorola, but the idea was the same.) There were two demos. The first simply used the IR port of the phone to convery commands to the VCR. The latter had a chip in a keychain preprograming with some radio station information. Pressing certain buttons on the keychain send statation and volume signals to the radio. Both the radio and TV were modified, and aren't what you would get today at RadioShack.
Sun also has the "Java Den" showing the use of Java in the home. There was also a talk on Java in the Home Gateway. The slides for the talk should be out after JavaOne.
You could also simply hook up an IP address to these devices and then send command over the network. But that's not what these demos were about.