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Dispatch is intended as an easy-to-use serial library that allows a simple exchange of multi-dimensional, multi-value data. Dispatch uses the concept of endpoints in order to get data from the sender to the receiver.

The form of Dispatch was largely inspired by Telemetry, which is described by the author as a publish-subscribe model.

Be sure to checkout the Dispatch How-To for full details on how to use Dispatch.

There is a sister project called SerialDispatch, which is a Python implementation for the PC-side. The sister project provides a Python interface useful for transferring data to and from the PC using the Dispatch protocol.

Project Maturity

The project now has solid unit test integration tests. In some cases, unit testing was skipped for a function that integrated the function, such as with the fletcher16 checksum.


RAM Requirements


Transmission can occur using a minimum of global RAM. I recommend at least 4 byes dedicated to the driver circular buffer, but that is your option. If you keep this buffer very small, then the processor will stall while waiting for data to leave the buffer. If you make it large enough to buffer your entire message, the processor will be free to perform other tasks while the driver sends the data via interrupts.


At this time, the entire received message must be buffered in framing before it is realeased to the higher-level dispatch. This is because the checksum must be verified. Once the checksum is verified, the message is ready to be read by the DIS_process() function. As a result, you should set the MAX_RECEIVE_MESSAGE_LENGTH (dispatch_config.h) to the longest number of bytes that you plan to send, plus 8. For completely safe receptions, you should set the RX_FRAME_LENGTH to twice that number.



A zip file containing Arduino-specific code and examples is provided in the releases. Simply unzip the contents of '' into file into '/sketchbook/libraries/dispatch/'. To run the example application, Open a new Arduino environment, File -> Examples -> dispatch -> dispatchDemo.

All Other Platforms

Setting Up

In order to set up the variables and functions internal to Dispatch, the following four functions MUST be called one time:




In order to properly execute received message, the DIS_process() must be called continually. DIS_process() may be called at reduced intervals, but the frequency of calling this function will correspondingly reduce response times to subscribing functions. In most microcontroller platforms, DIS_process() will be placed inside the infinite while(1) loop. If an RTOS is involved, it should be assigned as a task.

If the platform is only sending Dispatch messages and not receiving them, then DIS_process() may be omitted.

Publishing to an Endpoint

uint8_t myData0[] = {0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9};
uint16_t myData1[] = {10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19};
DIS_publish("foo:10,u8,u16", myData0, myData1);

All subscribers to the endpoint "foo" will be called when the above statement is executed. Spaces are permitted after the colon and comma characters.

Subscribing to an Endpoint

DIS_subscribe("foo", &mySubscriberFunction);

When an item is published to the endpoint "foo", then mySubscriberFunction is executed.

Getting the Data within the Subscriber

uint8_t myData0Received[10];
uint16_t myData1Received[10];

/* retrieve element 0, or the first element, into 'myData0Received'
    and save the array length into 'length' */
uint8_t length = DIS_getElements(0, myData0Received);

/* retrieve element 1 into 'myData1Received' */
DIS_getElements(1, myData1Received);

A more complete example may be found within the examples directory.


To make a contribution, simply fork the repository. Create a branch that is appropriately descriptive of your change and perform your development. When complete, create a pull request using that branch - DO NOT merge into master! Once the proper test coverage is added and passing on TravisCI, then we can merge into the master branch.

In some cases in which the documentation or examples are contributed, this process will be fast-tracked.