[nycbug-talk] Maker Faire Today - a few embedded boards

George Rosamond george at ceetonetechnology.com
Mon Sep 23 12:02:55 EDT 2013

Isaac (.ike) Levy:
> Hi All,
> My first time at Maker Faire in Queens yesterday was a blast, some
> relevant things to post here.
> Along with a massive "Learn to Solder" booth- (oriented toward kids)
> there were loads of robots, construction kits and systems, aerial
> robotics/quadricopters, tons of 3d printers, there were also tons of
> bizarre independent vendors for embedded computers.  The EFF had a
> booth, the NY TOOL chapter was doing their thing, all good stuff.
> Apparently, the world of Aurduino is diversifying out to UNIX capable
> hardware- and massive expansion, on more powerful embedded
> computers.


Arduino?  Very much... the shields have been part of things since the
beginning, but blinky/blink or "hello, world" only goes so far.

> If your'e thinking of heading out to Maker Faire today, I think these
> booths will be of interest to NYC*BUG folks:
> -- UDOO
> http://www.udoo.org/ A new ARM board company from Italy- it's
> analog/digital pinout matches the Arduino, to take advantage of using
> Arduino shields- graphics card on board, etc…
> George R. and I spent some time Speaking to their developers about
> *BSD, about compilers, etc…  They brought one relevant thing- an ARM
> standard.
> http://www.secoqseven.com/ http://www.qseven-standard.org/ 
> interesting list of boards, 
> http://www.qseven-standard.org/index.php?id=43
> An ARM hardware standard?  I'd be interested to hear people's
> feedback on this.  Anything that makes it less cumbersome to develop
> for an architecture is good, no?

Definitely.  It's "just another arm board" in some ways, but not in
others.  There seems to be a race to have better specs though (CPU, RAM,
gigabit NICs), not cheaper.

GNN: they are the ones I mentioned.. seems like cross-architecture
compatibility hell is quite broad and deep, and their interest was
piqued by the Clang and PCC mentions.

> http://chipkit.net/ 
> http://www.digilentinc.com/Products/Detail.cfm?Prod=CHIPKIT-UNO32
> MIPS based embedded boards, again, pinouts to fit Arduino shields,
> apparently focused on being *tiny*.

So they are one of the manufacturers of retrobsd.org compat boards.
Interestingly, they will be releasing a board comparable to the RPi, but

> http://minnowboard.org/ The shiny new intel board- they've got some
> to look at, and one driving a tabletop robotic arm.

At $200 it's sort of out of the RPi space, but it's also a refreshingly
honest release by Intel.  Nice specs, like a lot of mini-ITX sort of boards.

A late response to the surge of RPi and arm boards, but will x86 become
relevant in this space again?

I'm still wondering about *who* they imagine using it.  Do the same
people want a gigabit NIC as those who want HDMI?  Is there an audience
for shrunken desktops as full desktops?

Why is POE such an alien concept?

> Unrelated to UNIX, I was delighted to find a Gieger Counter which
> plugs into an iPhone/iPad: http://www.radiation-watch.org/
> It's amazing that they produced a useful Gieger Counter for less than
> $50. (I think this guy sold out yesterday).

Yes, very cool stuff.

I have to say, a lot of the stuff for sale at the main tent is not only
overpriced, but getting junkier.  It's surprising.  I know the maker toy
scene for a while, but for $20 we give you a tin can and two cams and an
axle is just too much.


More information about the talk mailing list