Build Your Own Linux Powered Pda
Build Your Own Linux Powered Pda
Jun 5 2006, 08:00 PM
Joined: 22-December 04
Member No.: 6,002
I've had the idea about rolling my own Linux powered PDA for some time, but I've been busy with another project of mine. So, I haven't posted about this idea, but recently Da_Blitz posted:
the iMX3 is a custom PDA idea as the 2700G chip is VERY hard to get. dont want to hijack this thread anymore so if you want more info then contact me direct or make another post
Definately looking for some more info on that!
Here's some interesting ideas to get the thread started:
GumStix ( www.gumstix.com www.gumstix.org ): Very small, proprietary, stackable modules. Very hobbyist friendly, but current models are still based around the Intel PXA255.
Colibri Module : PXA270 with most of the needed chips built in, and connections for most of the rest, in a formfactor of a DDR SODIMM. Moderately hobbyist friendly, with boards only 119Euros for the 520MHz version, but with a fixed handling fee for Hardware of 100 EUR and shipping of 45 EUR. You'll want to order more than one to be price effective with this supplier.
CM-X270 Computer-On-Module: I stubbled on to this site last night. No idea about this supplier's ablity to handle hobbyists, or even the cost of the module. However, you can configure a pretty impressive COM on that page. Up to PXA270 520Mhz, 128MB of RAM, Intel 2700G with 8MB of its own RAM, audio codec, and 512 MB of NAND flash!
Take a look at the Google Ads when you do a search for 'Arm development board', as quite a few Ads hit the mark for what we would want, if they could be had cheap, and single unit quanties (which most aren't ).
Jun 20 2006, 07:15 AM
Joined: 7-April 05
From: Sydney, Australia
Member No.: 6,806
actually i did mention a virbrater when talking about quake and the trackball
me persanally i have home on its own dedicated partion and / on another, but there pin compatible so just buy as much as you want.
backlight i like the logitech g-15 (what i am using to type with right now under linux) where the letters are the bit that lights up, i dont care between hard or membrane but membrane will be easier as the hard keys sit on the membrane anyway, take your point about it bieng impracticle however it is less of a challenge than finding someonu to make the membrane (unless we use actuall switches)
i thoght SD was slow because of the driver as far as i know its in 4 bit mode, btw the xscales have built in mem stick support
I like the finger print reader and want to keep it as a tribute to Z4CK and digital force, but i dont like it how he had it on the outside but it did make sence because thats how you opened it.
client is a toss up but some people use it, i am happy to stick with a miniusb jack and 2 full sized jacks but it seems obvios to me that one will be on the expansion bourd for IO use and the other for internal parts (bluetooth perhaps) we could add a hub but thats more power and space so i am happy to ditch it as i use a real ethernet dongle anyway as bridging causes me problems (ip on the interface , not the bridge problems)
i tempted to put bluetooth on usb due to bluetooth 2.0s speed (3Mbit) and wifi an the mem bus as mem mapped SRAM (freescale has a chip that will do CF+ SDIO or SRAM), the 3G thing for me is a nice thing but the 3G stuff is really about data, CDMA and GSM arent going anywhere soon so a quadband is fine and can be hooked up to a seriel port but i am willing to put more effort into 3G than i am for Wifi (let someone else on the taem worry about finding a good WiFi chip Madwifi is good but they have a binary HAL (but the do support ARM as a HAL target))
Touchsreen will be somthing like SPI or analog resetive (which can be wired up to a sound chip), i know people want it so i wont leave it out
EMP wise i can do it but it will drain your bat and posible fry your Z, Requires fingerprint reader (truley i am not jocking) consider it a "saftey" feature to prtect you data, but i am a big fan of magnesium encased flash chips as it works better (EMP dosent really affect flash)
for the fingerprint it would be nice with the secure boot feature i mentioned as you can have the key in ROM and do 2 factor authentication (i truley dont belive we have real triple factor authentication because somithng you have and somthing you are are basically the same thing)
not sure were to put the camera or the Rez so ill leave that to someone else, i thoght it would be easire to chuck it on the bottem but its not good for VOIP (unless you rotate the screen) if its on board we can use higher res chips, but keep in mind the camera interface is 60Mhz max (must check how much data it transfers per clock) so if you want 30fps keep that in mind
headphone jack i thoght someone wanted 2? i am very happy to comply as if we use the 4 ring sockets we acn convert it into a full 5.1 setup with external cables or have multichannel input or stereo output and mono input and so on.
the external video would show up as a second independent frame buffer that can be sit to mirror OR use Xinemeria OR as 2 independent heads
I dont mind internal CF i just hate the thoght of external and internal, its one or the other for me and most likly mem only (it will have wifi bluetooth and gsm what else do you need to plug in
yeah it looks like high density low profile sockets (perhaps joined by ribbion cable as everyone dose this in PDAS due to it bieng paper thin, the trackball uses it as well), for the docking connector the laptops i have had in the past have all had high density low depth sockets that would work well, slap that on the side or the back and we should be fine (the side would mean a side loading docking station but it makes sense for backpacks as it means they wouldnt make it any deeper anly wider and taller (better on pockets for this monster)
the trick for the external screen is to get a serial one or use an 8 pin uC
the trackball i see as bieng seperate and on the oppiste corner to the direction pad (direction pad over the battery as the trackball consumos depth, your right this woould be the ultimte setup for quake 3 now that the source has been released, plug in 5.1 sound and video out plus a keyboard and mouse and youve got a kick arse gaming setup that fts in your pocket (someone pinch me)
at the very least i want rounded corners, extra screen if i have the budget for it (space time cash)
man i can see this thing going comercial just from one flash moive of this thing playing quake, then plugging into a monitor and more quake while being posted to slashdot, i would like to see that!!!! espesially if its 8 people on wifi playing quake in the same room, due to this i shall rate its sucsess on its ability to play quake and moives as this gives us a nice benchmark for multimedia
the auxillary display is low on my list and the finger print reader is trivial to add (its mainly a software thing) but if thats what you want then i will add it to my list of things that i will drop if i need space, in reality it uses SPI and a bit of board space, the reason i like the slider one is that its smaller, not for the extra security (as your fingerprints are all over the thing), i like it as it can be used te prevent network attacks as you phisacally have to be there so with pam you say require fingerprint and username unless user is logged on then only require fingerprint, gerat for sudo as then you can have a timeout of 2 seconds (my passwords are 20+ chars even on my Z)
the funny thing about this is its a laptop taken to the extreme in size like the Z an a larger scale, makes it very easy to chuck it in a laptop case and get 5x the battery life and more HD using the one design (or make the laptop a docking station)
i want LEDS as i am a blikenlights fan and use them for feedback alot, i was hoping 2 on the hinge that are 2 color and 2 or more) on the keyboard (i use the cal, notes whatever buttons as VT changing and an led above each one to tell me which VT i am on would be heaven)
im taking some time off in about 1-2 weeks so expect alot of pics and data sheets then, basically where posible its BGA and 4 layer boards with buried vias, if that means anything to you, not to mentian its a stacked design like the Z's but we have an extra pcb or 2 (c300 has 3 layers, keyboard, mobo, SD), the chips may be samall but these things can be hard to route
i can just imagine my Z acting as an ansewring machine when i m busy;)
so who wants to do what, i need someone on bluetooth chips, mem chips, flash chips, wifi chips, GSM (i might do that as i seem to want it the most), sockets, connectors, pcb anufacture places. and of course anything else you think of, we also need someone on case design (prefrebly with an intrest or backgorund in design espesially industrial or bulk manufacture design, i might know a cheap factorey or 2 in china but i would need high quality design and where to buy the parts from (ie injection material/aluminium) as they do tend to skimp if you leave it up to them, keyboard membrane is also a worry
need to get a wiki up, oh well there should be a site up next week
keyboard wise anyone object to dvorak and qwerty on the same design with qwerty in onu color and Dvorak in another?
as a base Ferret-Simpson seems to have a good idea of what should go in it and i think i will follow the eairler post where he explained ech section, for the moment thats what we are aiming for (post #69)
speculatrix is close but ferret-simpson got there first , no firewire (needs chip) and we think we might drop client as there are better ways to connect (a usb host to host cabel will suffice if you need usb at both ends plus it means driver less install as every lin machine i have plugged into a winbox asks or drivers
M1 is not worth the effort it screams incompatable, hdmi is in most new equipment and you can get dvi to hdmi and vga to hdmi converters and a hdmi to componont i belive so its fairly universal
as far as i can see this chip is very power efficent but we wont be able to tell till we have one sitteng in our hands, most devices can be turned off and the thing consumes about 15mW in deep sleep (apm -s)
math co-pro/ssl accelerator/dsp = fpga but this has simd in it as well so be happy as well as floating poit
printer/floppy drive/geiger counter/microwave oven (just checking if you read this far :-) = see ion cannon i do read every post
accelerometer= yes definetly (hooked to sound card), its about 2mm by 2mm
ethernet is a mabey the magnetics are huge and we are running out of space alond the outside of the pcb, but i would like to see it, or you can get a gigabit usb ethernet card and get 400Mbps on it
i verify that its a 256MB max however i am unsure if its 4 chip, will have to double check as it said banks, the chips have banks internally and several chips connected to a chip select is also commanly known as a bank, will download the freescale implementation and double chek against there refrence design (thank god they have one)
actually it supports 1 ATA and 1 CF/PCMCIA slot, but the PCMCIA slot can be switched to ATA to give you 2 ATA slots (thats how i interpret the data sheets high level over view, can some one verify this, you can make a secon slot take over and i will try this the tradeoff is that it tokes up a bit of room (1 transitor) as i just divert the chip select line BUT the first slot is still powered unless i add anothe transistor (good idea will do that)
bluetooth audio is a software thing, you can get chips that do it in hardware but they are larger so we dont need a chip that explicitly supports it
Heads up display is a primary motavation, it was this project or buy a heads up display for my Z and build a cf card with VGA out, you can see which one i chose (see tekgear.com, i like ther nomad but i was going to get the pda display they had)
the ethernet in CF is depricated as i dont think we will have a IO capable CF slot (it is connected to the mem bus for onec), i am a user/abuser of the usb ports and am trying to make everyone use them hahahhahahhah, seriosly try getting usb stuff rather than CF for this pda as then you can use it with your PC as well (DVB for example, run mythTV on your PDA, MPAG2 encoding/decoding acceleration included)
Super caps good but wouldnt you charge the batt in the PDA, it takes alot of space and remeber we wont be using ram for storage (unless you use tmpfs) so batt loss dosent matter (think cxx00 sereis or a laptop
But it sounds like you guys want to build a ultraportable laptop and not a PDA. If I can see some good drawings, I'd be much less concerned.::: next week trust me
audio is a big thing, i mant 6 input channel and 6 output over 2x 4 ring headphone jack with 3 of each ring switchable as an input or output, its most likley we weill need to sound chips on board but they are small to begin with or you can get a usb audio kit, i use a audigy 2 NX 24Bit @ 96Khz with optical out/in
size is limited by the size of my pockets, but consider i buy my pants to fit my electronics not my electronics to fit my pants
Bottery life is king and everything can be turned off independently, however nothing can stop someone from turning everything on (i can show you the door you must be the one to walk throgh it)
OZ is good however i do have some concerns about the quality of the packages and the consitency of the packing, but thats beacuse they dont have the number of people that package for edra or debian for example, that said it would be my choice unless pdaXrom wants to port to it, they seem to do a gerat job
OESF is surely the most exciting forum on the web for computing enthusiasts, you said it to bad we cant walk throgh a wormhole and all meat up easily as it seems everyone here is quite lively
integer wise i would expect these to be close but i cant say before hand, however its the the other stuff like openGL that make this chip better, i would expect its probelly worse than an xscale running from cache buh the advatage is that the bus an this thing is F****ing carzy, it can do mulptiple transactions at once and the DDR makes this a killer combination, at 100% load i belve this chip would be 30% faster than an Xscale, but keep in mind these are gousses bassed an what i know about cpu arcitecture, i will say with great acuracy that this should easily get 2x vide playback performance of an xscale due to the mem bus and CF being independent, the multiple transaction bus and the DDR 266 ram as well as the large amount of RAM
IR is CIR and it should charge off up to 12V if i have anything to say, as well as it wont matter what type of charger as long as its below 12v and fits in the socket (dont care about polarity)
sodimm soket is nice but laptop mem is 64bit not 32 bit as well as not being low power chips, i will look into as we can make dimms, this would mean you can plug in more ram without having to change anything (diffrent mem sizes require diffrent settings) however i think i might just say "256MB only, you want less you hack the boottloader youself" the only problem is i can fit PCB in the space that sodimm takes up
there is a small loop hole so we dont have to get them aproved, basically i dont sell them 2 you, you buy them from the manufacturueer as a prototype, thats why i release the design as GPL you send the board off they send it back and you buy he case seperatly, no FCC aprval required (or AUS or EU aproval as well, just cant remeber the names)
i see the point about a mobile phone bieng seperate but i hate acrying the 2 aroundand it allows us to do some nice things and means 1 battery as well, the remote control is done by putting DC on the headphone jack, this is then split with a capcitor and an inductor, the inductor only allows DC and the capacitor only AC, the inductor feeds into one input and the cap another meaning you can get sound and the buttons seperatly, else you can pull it all from bluetooth
a 1Mhz ossilascope isnt posible, try a seperate usb osiclascope (look up fsf software radio, it apeared on slashdot), mak sampling freq would be 24Khz at the moment so a sample rate of 48Khz, i micht be able to push that sampaling freq to 96Khz or 192Khz depending on the chip but you will have 6 channels so use quadreture decoding to improve that, dont forget there may be a FPGA and there will be an expansion port
i agree with dhns i woul however put a cf slot on the ATA pins for internal CF/Microdrive storage as there are 20GB microdrives coming out and i do like having a swapfile
bluetooth as GPS in my opinion, we need a wiki as some points are comming up again that have been resolved, i blame my long post... which leads me to:
LONGEST POST EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!
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