Hey all, I need some help / ideas. 

We have a really old pro-lite led sign that has been great at collecting dust on the wall. A math teacher wants to turn it into a stock ticker. I was like yeah yeah, let's rig it to a raspberry pi. Here lies the problem. There is a serial port built into the sign to allow communication through a PC running win95.   : )
I had a serial to USB adapter that allowed me to connect to Linux. Here is where it gets tricky, I can connect and sometimes send text for it to scroll using dosbox.  However, it's super clunky win95 software and only works sometimes. 
We want to directly communicate from Linux to the pro-lite.  We want the pi to pull stocks in real time, which is easy, but sending that data to the sign isn't so easy.
The plan is to use mop to get the ticker fees, push it to a .txt with the right codes that the pro-lite likes in front of text...<ID01><PA> stock ticker text....<E><EOT>, again which a simple bash script will do. But sending that file is the issue. The machines aren't talking very well. 

So, long way around, does anyone have any ideas how to make this thing work? Anyone have any experience with sending info through serial ports via Linux? Anyone know how I can simply bypass the pro-lite motherboard and just hack the led display ?

In Linux the serial port is talking through /dev/ttyUSB0. I've used this site for help but it has been no help...http://www.instructables.com/id/Communicating-with-a-Pro-Lite-LED-Display-Cable-C/

Thanks in advance, I'm all ears. 

Mike Norkun
Science Teacher / Science Coordinator
Bellows Falls Union High School

"Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished."


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