[Arm-netbook] Lenovo To Offer $200 Budget Tablet

Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton luke.leighton at gmail.com
Sun Sep 4 22:39:57 BST 2011

On Sun, Sep 4, 2011 at 9:54 PM, Bari Ari <bari at onelabs.com> wrote:

> About a month or so later Asus changed their secure-boot-key. Is this the
> mess we want to deal with? If we want to build open designs we need devices
> with open docs. TI might be the only vendor with cortex a8 devices and newer
> with at least partially open docs.

 it's not just "open docs", it's competitive as well as desirable
devices with open docs.  i'm making progress in that area, with one
SoC vendor whose product is highly competitively priced _and_ they
have at least got the general principle.  i can't say more about it
right now.

 my main focus at the moment is therefore to tackle several things at
once, with a view to getting the following roadmap underway:

1) get a PCMCIA-form-factor CPU card designed and samples sent out to
interested people.
2) get a matching "engineering board" made (with suitable Cortex M3 or
other embedded controller)
3) free software developed such that
4a) the combination of 1+2 can act as an embedded replacement in a
RepRap (3D printer)
4b) it's possible to develop a laptop using 1
4c) it's possible to develop a tablet using 1
4d) it's possible to develop a low-cost desktop pc / PVR / IPTV using 1
4e) 1+2 can also other cool stuff.
5) a *better* CPU can be a drop-in off-the-shelf replacement for the card in 1

that's the roadmap, and i have a factory prepared to at least do steps
1 and 2, starting within the next few days.  so i need help selecting
ICs for the engineering board.  off the 68-pin connector is going to
be: SATA-II, 10/100 Ethernet, USB-2, I2C, 24-pin RGB/TTL, 10 GPIOs,
and the rest will be 3.3v and 5v power, and about 12 GND pins (mostly
separating the high-speed signals).

 so the engineering board is going to have an eSATA connector, an RJ45
ethernet connector, at least one USB2 port, and one 5v power
connector.  ICs so far include a GL850G (4-port USB2 hub), a 5v to
3.3v power regulator (any suggestions anyone?) and the all-singing,
all-dancing STM32F103RB6T or whatever it is (did i get that right from
memory? :)

 i'm thinking of advising them to wire up the GL850G to the PCMCIA
connector, so that the number of USB ports can be expanded to 2, one
of them can be connected to the expansion header, and then it's
possible to connect the STM32F to it as well.



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