GPL Source code and SDE for Archos Gen8 Devices

Right at the end of November, Archos released the first version of their Android 2.2 firmware (2.0.54). They now have also released the GPL code for this firmware. http://www.archos.com/support/download/software/sources/gen8-gpl-froyo.tgz In this package, you’ll find the following: Linux Kernel 2.6.29 buildroot – Set of tools to generate the cross-compilation toolchain, the kernel and the root file system A directory called “external”  with the following libraries, tools and drivers: alsa-lib – Audio library blktrace – Driver debugging tool elfcopy –  Tool to generate executable binaries grub – Bootloader iptables – Firewall Tool liblzo  – LZO Compression Library webkit – Web Browser Engine alsa-utils – Audio Tools BlueZ – Bluetooth Protocol Stack elfutils – Tool to manipulate executable binaries hostapd – For Wifi Authentication jdiff – Java Code Analyzer openvpn – VPN Client/Server wpa_supplicant – Wifi tools for WPA/WPA2 bison – Parser Generator dbus – Libray and daemon for IPC (InterProcess Communication) genext2fs – Tool to generate ext-2 images iproute2 –  TCP/IP Tools […]

Google Chrome Notebook Cr-48 and Chrome OS Update

After unveiling Google Nexus S and Android 2.3, Google lifted the lid on its reference notebook codenamed “Cr-48″ and provided updates about Chrome OS. This notebook features a 12.1” monitor and runs Chrome OS on an Intel platform. The Cr-48 Chrome Notebook is only designed for Chrome OS pilot program and will be distributed free of charge to selected organization and users in the United States. Here’s an excerpt from Google Chrome OS website: Each participant in the Pilot program will receive a Cr-48 Chrome notebook; in return, we’ll expect you to use it regularly and send us detailed feedback. Sound interesting? Please note: Chrome OS is for people who live on the web. It runs web-based applications, not legacy PC software. The Pilot program is not for the faint of heart. Things might not always work just right. The Pilot program is open to individuals, businesses, schools, non-profits and developers based in the United States. If you think you’ve got what […]

Google Nexus S and Android 2.3 (GingerBread) Unveiled

After much speculation, Google and Samsung finally lifted the lid on the Nexus S, the successor of Nexus One. It will be available for sale (unlocked) in the US on the 16th of December (Best Buy – 529 USD)  and the UK on the 20th of December (Carphone Warehouse – 549.95 GBP) Samsung/Google Nexus S runs Android 2.3 (gingerbread) on a processor based on cortex A8 (Hummingbird) clocked at 1 GHz, with 512 MB RAM, 16 GB internal storage. The full specs are available on Google Nexus S page. One interesting new feature is Near Field Communications (NFC) that will allow the device to read RFIDs (e.g. for Interactive Advertising) and behave like a contact less card. So the phone might be used to make payments in the future and replace your credit/debit card. It could also be used as a contactless stored value smart card  similar to the Octopus card in Hong Kong and EZ-Link card in Singapore. At […]

Resources for Intel Atom CE41xx: CE4100, CE4130, CE4150

Intel Atom CE4100 (Codename: Sodaville) is a System-on-Chip (SoC) media processor designed for use in set-top boxes, media player and internet TVs such as D-Link Boxee Box and Sony NSX-24GT1 Google TV. The Atom CE4100 is a 45nm-manufactured SoC running at 1.2 GHz. The Atom CE4100 supports hardware decode of up to two 1080p video streams (H.264, VC-1, MPEG-4/Divx..)  and advanced 3-D graphics. It is also able to handle Adobe Flash 10 and 3D gaming as well. For further details about the processor, please refer to Intel Atom CE4100 Product Brief. [ad#Google Adsense – Wide Banner] The Atom CE4100 custom linux kernel and SDK are not publicly available, and you’ll need to contact an Intel FAE if you want to develop on the platform. However, some development tools for Atom (i.e The Intel(R) Embedded Software Development Tool Suite for Intel(R) Atom(TM) Processor) including a C++ compiler (GCC compatible), performance primitives (optimized multimedia functions), performance analyzer, application debugger ans JTAG Debugger […]

Battery-less embedded devices with Power Harvesting

Embedded systems without batteries nor connection to the mains, is that possible ? The answer is Yes!. For ultra low-power devices, Power Harvesting (aka Energy Harvesting) may be an option. By harvesting the energy from vibration from people walking or cars crossing bridges, automobile heat, broadcasting waves, light, wind, etc.. it is possible to capture enough energy to power very small devices such as wearable electronics and wireless sensor networks. The illustration below show the multitudes of tiny sources of energy around us. Please refer to the table below to see what amount of energy might be harvested depending on the source. Energy Source Examples Energy per unit area Vibration Walking, motors, bridges 10-3 to 10-4 W/cm2 Light Lighting, sunlight inside rooms 10-4 W/cm2 Heat Body heat, vehicle waste heat 10-5 W/cm2 Electromagnetic waves Broadcasting, wireless LAN emissions 10-6 W/cm2 The two main advantages of devices that can be powered without battery are The cost (By eliminating batteries and battery […]

Sony NSX-24GT1 Google TV Tear Down

Nikkei Electronics has recently teared down Sony Google TV as seen at IFA 2010. They used Sony NSX-24GT1, a 24″ internet HD television powered by Google TV, for this little exercise. They found three boards: Power supply board at the upper left. Main board (“Android board”) at the lower left. TV board at the right. The SoC mounted on the TV board is Renesas Electronics Corp. EMMA3TL2 (MC-10157), an image processing SoC designed for digital TVs supporting ATSC (USA), DVB (Europe) and ARIB (Japan). Finally, they disassembled the TV to access the main board. It turned out that Sony NSX-24GT1 Google TV main board is based on Intel Atom CE4100 (center) and Foxconn is the manufacturer (lower right). Eight Samsung K4B1G0846F DRAM modules are mounted on the board (Right of Atom CE4100) and since each of the DRAM has a capacity of 128 Megabytes, the total memory capacity is 1 Gigabyte. The “Android” board receives the video data from the […]

Webtube HD Casing, Hardware and FCC Approval

WebTube HD – one of the first Android set-top box – now commercialized in Germany, Austria and Switzerland (Retail price: 249 Euros), just passed FCC approval. The interesting part of the FCC Approval is that we do get the external and internal pictures, so we can get a better look at the hardware. First let’s have a look at Webtube HD Casing. As we already knew, this media player is designed and manufactured by InnoDigital Co. Ltd. The news is that it will be distributed by Yonsei Corporation Ltd, a rather recent Japanese Company apparently only setup to promote Webtube HD. (Japanese name: ブラウザBOX) See Webtube HD internal pictures for FCC approval below. We already knows the following HW specs from Webtube HD website: OS : Android Memory : 512 Mbyte DDR / 2 Gbyte Flash Memory USB(option) : 1 port (for option) Audio : MPEG-1 layers 1,2 and 3(MP3) Video : MPEG4, H.264 High Definition(720p), NTSC/PAL RCU : 15keys […]

ARM Techcon 2010 Proceedings and Presentation Slides

A lot have been covered at ARM Techcon 2010. I’ve blogged a few articles about ARM Techcon 2010, but there is a lot more to discover. A full set of documents and presentation slides shown at Techcon 2010 are available at http://vault.eetimes.com/armconference/proceedings/ The documents are divided in 2 main parts: Day 1: Chip Design Conference Day 2-3: System & Software Design Conference which are then divided into sub-directories with really (hmm) good names such as ATC-100, ATC-101… to ATC-165 so that everybody can clearly see what the subjects are. You’ll also have the Keynote and Industry addresses. Since this blog is more related to “System & Software Design” I’ve been through the pain of downloading all documents of this section and checking the subjects. You may do it for “Chip Design Conference” if you wish, I’m sure you’ll enjoy it. You’ll have one or two documents in each folder. If you have two, most of the time there will be […]