Sep 22, 2016, hellekin
On our way to
proto_v2 layout! Schematics are rolling with Eeshow.
Reaching out and European hacker events.
Recently we received 15+ BeagleBoard-xM to serve each as a virtual
proto_v2. As soon as
the layout and PCB
manufacturing & assembling of
proto_v2 is done, we expect to have
10+ working prototypes that Neo900UG will ship to its team members and
selected Free Software developers.
Since we moved to KiCad the schematics work has taken pace: our engineering team already updated the BOB (μSD, flash, hackerbus, etc.), some LEDs (including a component change, and a design omission for which Joerg found a nice solution), much improved IR design, sensors (eliminated two chips and replaced/upgraded two others), a complete redesign of the SIM Switch, plus smaller changes on a few more sheets.
More schematics updates are upcoming: WLAN, ECI, IO expanders (new), keyboard matrix, BB-xM interconnect, LOWER-UPPER interconnect pin assignment, etc.
Since we moved to KiCad the schematics work has taken pace, and our engineering team is slowly but surely going through the redesign of the SIM switch and the numerous details that need attention (including making the automatic design checking (ERC) not cringing so much on known issues and false alarms like missing connections in order to show the real issues.)
At some point we're likely to call for a public review of the schematics, before moving on to the layout phase. If you're interested, please let us know.
Werner announced Eeshow, a set of programs to visualize
differences between version of schematics produced with KiCad's
Eeschema. It's free software released under the GPL, and you can read
more about it, including a walkthrough of the GUI,
Eeshow's code lives on Neo900's git repository.
To break even, the project needs to produce and sell 800 Neo900 devices. Currently, we have around 350 pre-orders, and sourced a bit more than 100 N900 units to refurbish.
While we're moving on with EE, we still need to acquire hundreds more of N900 in a good shape. So, keep looking!
We also need to reach out to more people. Another visit at the Chaos Communication Congress can offer some visibility. We're also considering FOSDEM. Are you going to these events? Here, again, if you have ideas and motivation to bring in more people, you're welcome!
The Neo900 project aims to provide a successor of N900 Nokia Internet Tablet™ device, with faster CPU, more RAM and LTE modem, basing efforts on an already existing, mature and stable free platform - the OpenPhoenux GTA04, following the spirit of freedom known from Openmoko devices.