AMD G-Series based Digital Signage: Ibase SI-18

March 29th, 2011 No comments

Ibase announced a digital signage player – the Signature Book SI-18  – based on the dual-core AMD G-Series T56N running at 1.6 GHz.  The IBase SI-18 is currently sold with 2GB RAM and a 160GB 2.5″ HDD, but it can support up to 4GB of RAM and 1TB of disk storage. It also features DVI output, gigabit Ethernet, two USB ports, an audio jack, a serial port and a Mini PCI slot for Wi-Fi or Bluetooth support. The device weights 800g and just measures 125.5mm (W) x 125.5mm (L) x  36 mm (H). IBase claims it is the smallest x86 digital signage player in the world. Ibase SI-18 Digital Signage Player Here are Ibase SI-18 specifications: System Mainboard EB900 CPU Type AMD G-Series Dual-Core APU (Accelerated Processing Unit): T56N=1.6GHz @ 18W TDP CPU Package 413-BGA Chipset AMD A55E Controller Hub Memory DDR3-1066 Graphics ATi Radeon HD6310 series graphics processing system integrated in APU • DirectX 11 • Direct Compute 11…

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Installing Linaro ARM Cross Toolchain on Ubuntu

March 28th, 2011 19 comments

You can easily install Linaro arm cross-compiler on Ubuntu 10.04 (Lucid), 10.10 (Maverick) and 11.04 (Natty) as follows: sudo apt-get install gcc-arm-linux-gnueabi This will install Linaro cross-toolchain version 4.4 on Ubuntu 10.04 and 10.10, and version 4.5 on Ubuntu 11.04. You can check the installation worked by checking the cross-compiler version [email protected]:~$ arm-linux-gnueabi-gcc -v Using built-in specs. Target: arm-linux-gnueabi Configured with: ../src/configure -v –with-pkgversion=’Ubuntu/Linaro 4.4.4-14ubuntu4′ –with-bugurl=file:///usr/share/doc/gcc-4.4/README.Bugs –enable-languages=c,c++,fortran,objc,obj-c++ –prefix=/usr –program-suffix=-4.4 –enable-shared –enable-multiarch –enable-linker-build-id –with-system-zlib –libexecdir=/usr/lib –without-included-gettext –enable-threads=posix –with-gxx-include-dir=/usr/arm-linux-gnueabi/include/c++/4.4.5 –libdir=/usr/lib –enable-nls –enable-clocale=gnu –enable-libstdcxx-debug –enable-objc-gc –disable-sjlj-exceptions –with-arch=armv7-a –with-float=softfp –with-fpu=vfpv3-d16 –with-mode=thumb –disable-werror –enable-checking=release –program-prefix=arm-linux-gnueabi- –includedir=/usr/arm-linux-gnueabi/include –build=i686-linux-gnu –host=i686-linux-gnu –target=arm-linux-gnueabi –with-headers=/usr/arm-linux-gnueabi/include –with-libs=/usr/arm-linux-gnueabi/lib Thread model: posix gcc version 4.4.5 (Ubuntu/Linaro 4.4.4-14ubuntu4) You can also install the latest version 4.5 (recommended) on Lucid and Maverick: sudo add-apt-repository ppa:linaro-maintainers/toolchain sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install gcc-4.5-arm-linux-gnueabi If you are using an ARM platform running Ubuntu 10.10 or higher, you could also use the native GCC compiler. sudo apt-get install gcc-4.5 Source: https://wiki.linaro.org/Resources/ToolchainInstall You can easily install Linaro arm cross-compiler…

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Temperature Data Logging with TI eZ430-Chronos Watch

March 25th, 2011 7 comments

I wanted to record 24-hour of temperature data with eZ430-Chronos devkit and draw the result in a spreadsheet to see how the temperature evolves during the day. Here are the instructions to do so. 1. Update firmware to Chronos Datalogger. In order to record temperature data in your eZ430-Chronos development kit, you’ll need to update the firmware to use Chronos Datalogger. First start the Chronos Control Center, click on the Wireless Update tab, click on browse to select the Chronos Datalogger firmware file matching your hardware. In my case, I selected  C:\Program Files\Texas Instruments\eZ430-Chronos\Recovery\Chronos Watch\Applications\eZ430_Chronos_Datalogger_433MHz_1_5.txt. Then click on Update Chronos Watch.  On the watch, press the # button several time to enter rFbSl mode and press the down button to start the wireless update. 2. Configure the watch for temperature logging. Now start Chronos Data Logger software,  click on Start Access Point. On your watch,  press the # button to enter Sync mode and press the down button to enable…

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Categories: Testing Tags: msp430, texas instruments, watch

Wysips Transparent solar charger built into displays

March 24th, 2011 No comments

Wysips, a company based in the south of France, developed a thin transparent photovoltaic film that can be used to charge smartphones, e-book, tablet and even laptop. They were at CTIA 2011 and were interview by laptopmag. Their transparent photovoltaic strip is 100 micrometer thick and can be used with touchscreen and 3D displays. It can provide 250mW for smartphone by continuously charging the device (6 hours of outdoor light) and possibly removing the need for charger. The cost for smartphones would be 1 USD, which could potentially be offset by a smaller battery. They are currently working with handset manufacturer and expect products using their technology to hit the market within 12 months. The next version due in 2012 should provide enough power for 30 minutes of talk time after one hour of charging. Wysips, a company based in the south of France, developed a thin transparent photovoltaic film that can be used to charge smartphones, e-book, tablet and…

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Archos Gen9 Tablets Coming in June 2011

March 23rd, 2011 No comments

During the investor conference on 18th March 2011, Archos announced they will release their Gen9 Android Tablets in June 2011 with 4 key differentiators compared to the competition: Plastic-overmolded stainless steel structure: Thinner, lighter and stronger tablet enclosure Better cost-effectiveness than competing solutions Patented techno used since Gen 7 in 2009 ARCHOS alone to use Hard Disks in tablets: Deep redesign of Android ARCHOS has a long experience in using HD’s for mobile devices Price: 250 GB HD = 32 GB Flash Memory ARCHOS 1st to use ARM Dual Core A9 @ 1.6 GHz Forefront competition limited to ARM Dual Core A9 @ 1GHz (iPad 2, Xoom All Gen 9 tablets targeted at 1.6 GHz All Gen 9 tablets targeted at 1.6 GHz New disruptive 3G modem solution for tablets Will allow ARCHOS to make headway into telcos Implemented in all Gen 9 tablets Patent pending Since Archos Gen8 were based on OMAP3, we could speculate that Gen9 will use…

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Texas Instruments eZ430-Chronos Wireless Watch Unboxing

March 22nd, 2011 1 comment

I’ve just received the eZ430-Chronos development tool I ordered last week (after 2 working days) by Fedex. Today, I’ll just post some pictures of the kit and provide some descriptions. There is a woman jogging on the box because you can actually buy a chest strap to monitor your speed, heart beat and calories consumption. If you would like to purchase one (49 Euros), it is available at http://www.bm-innovations.com/index.php/shop_products.html. Apparently there are only 868MHz (EU) and 915MHz (USA) versions, and they do not sell the strap for the 433MHz (international) version as I have. The watch is normally turned off the first time you open the box, it’s just turned on on the picture because I used it before taking the pictures. The content of the box includes: eZ430-Chronos wireless watch eZ430 USB programming and debugging interface (Bottom left) CC1111 USB RF access point (Bottom right on top of the screwdriver). Mini Phillips screwdriver CD containing documentation and development software…

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Cross compiling Berkeley DB for ARM and MIPS

March 21st, 2011 8 comments

Following my blog entry about Databases for Linux Embedded Systems, here are the instructions to cross-compile Oracle Berkeley DB. First download the source code of the latest version of Berkeley DB (version 11gR2 – 11.2.5.1.25). You’ll need to register on Oracle website first on the download page http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/database/berkeleydb/downloads/index.html to download http://download.oracle.com/otn/berkeley-db/db-5.1.25.tar.gz (with AES encryption) or  http://download.oracle.com/otn/berkeley-db/db-5.1.25.NC.tar.gz (if you don’t need encryption). Extract the source code: tar xzvf ../Downloads/db-5.1.25.tar.gz Configure and build the source code. I’ll use mipsel-linux-gcc, but any other cross-compiler could be used. cd db-5.1.25/build_unix ../dist/configure –host=mipsel-linux CC=mipsel-linux-gcc RANLIB=mipsel-linux-ranlib STRIP=mipsel-linux-strip AR=mipsel-linux-ar –prefix=/home/jaufranc/edev/lib/db-11g make make install The full berkeley DB package is 79MB: [email protected]:~/edev/lib/db-11g$ du –max-depth=1 -h 6.6M    ./lib 308K    ./bin 72M    ./docs 176K    ./include 79M    . However, you won’t need the include and docs directory in your embedded target. So you do not need to copy those. You may or may need the utilities in the bin file. The lib diirectory contains two versions of the static library (why?)…

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AMD G-Series SDK and Development Boards

March 18th, 2011 2 comments

Earlier this year, AMD announced its new Embedded processors G-Series aimed at set-top boxes, smart tv, digital signage, point of sales, media servers and more in order to compete with Intel Atom solutions as well as ARM based processors. Please refer to the link above for an overview and details about the 5 processors of the AMD G-series: T56N – Dual core @ 1.6GHz with Radeon HD 6310 GPU T48N – Dual core @ 1.4 GHz with Radeon HD 6310 GPU T40N – Dual core @ 1.0 GHz with Radeon HD 6250 GPU T52R – Single core @ 1.5 GHz with Radeon HD 6310 GPU Today, I’ll discuss about the development boards and software development kits available for this platform. AMD G-Series Development Boards and Reference Designs AMD Provide two reference designs and one development board: AMD Embedded G-Series Platform Mini-ITX Reference Design. No details are publicly available as this mini-ITX reference design requires you to sign an NDA for…

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