Kris Kortright is at it again on the Adafruit forums. He originally brought us his awesome RiderScan I, and he is now going to upgrade the entire system to the droolworthy setup above.
Some of the key new features between RiderScan I and RiderScan II is that I replaced the Adafruit Wave Shield with an Emic2 Text-To-Speech module – which is a Fantastic addition to the Adafruit product line, as now I can generate all the voice I need without have to pre-generate all the sound files and calling them one by one. I also added the new Adafruit MAX98306 Class D audio amplifier to the rig, which is another Great addition as i was using the ancient, Huge Vellum amplifiers in RiderScan I, and these are so small I was able to join them onto the main proto shield! This reduced the height of the rig by loosing the Wave shield (which is a big deal), and got further compactness and greater voice functionality – so RiderScan II should be a Much more capable system.
The PN532 is the most popular NFC chip, and is what is embedded in pretty much every phone or device that does NFC. It can pretty much do it all, such as read and write to tags and cards, communicate with phones (say for payment processing), and ‘act’ like a NFC tag. If you want to do any sort of embedded NFC work, this is the chip you’ll want to use!
NFC (Near Field Communications) is a way for two devices very close to each other to communicate. Sort of like a very short range bluetooth that doesn’t require authentication. It is an extension of RFID, so anything you can do with RFID you can do with NFC. You can do more stuff with NFC as well, such as communicate bi-directionally with cell phones
Because it can read and write tags, you can always just use this for RFID-tag projects. We carry a few different tags that work great with this chip. It can also work with any other NFC/RFID Type 1 thru 4 tag (and of course all the other NXP MiFare type tags)