96Boards Hikey Development Board is Now Officially Supported in AOSP

Hikey is a one of the first 96Boards compliant development board manufactured by either LeMaker in China and CircuitCo in the US, and while the hardware requirements of 96Boards specifications are rather easy to meet, the software requirements including “bootloader (open source), accelerated graphics support (binary or open source), a Linux kernel buildable from source code based from mainline, or the latest Google-supported Android kernel version” are much harder to comply with. Linaro had a very good news for Linaro Connect Bangkok as they announced Hikey board was supported in Android Open Source Project (AOSP). So that means Hikey board will run the latest version of Android like Google Nexus devices, with the advantage of also getting more recent devices. If you want to build an Android image from AOSP just retrieve the source code: Grab & extract vendors binaries for Hikey from Google.com. and complete the build: And you can find the instructions to load the resulting image to …

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MinnowBoard MAX Schematics, Board layout, Gerber, and BoM Released

MinnowBoard MAX (aka MinnowBoard2) is an embedded board powered by Intel Atom Bay-Trail-I E3815 (single core) or E3825 (dual core) processor, with 1 to 2GB RAM, SATA II, USB 3.0, Gigabit Ethernet ports, and more. The board currently officially supports four operating systems: Debian GNU/Linux, Linux built with the Yocto Project, Android 4.4, and Windows 8.1. One of its main selling point is the price as the single core version sells for $99, and the dual core version for $129, rivalling in price with equivalent ARM based development boards. It’s also an open source hardware board, and as it’s now about to ship, CircuitCo released all hardware files under a Creative Commons CC-BY-SA license, allowing anybody with the right skills to create a clone, or their own hardware. Here are the files that have been released: Schematic (PDF) Schematic (Orcad DSN) Board Layout (Allegro BRD) Gerbers Bill of Materials Schematics and PCB layout have been designed with Cadence Orcad and …

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The BeagleBone Black Turns Blue with BlueSteel-Basic, Loses HDMI and Flash

CircuitCo has just introduced BlueSteel-Basic, a development board based on the Beaglebone Black but with a Blue PCB, no HDMI output, and no eMMC flash that’s destined to be used by OEMs in their products. LinuxGizmos also reports that BlueSteel-Basic is to be followed by BlueSteel-IT, an industrial temperature grade (-40 to 100°C) board based on the Beaglebone Black, and Bluesteel-Core, a computer-on-module (CoM) based on Ti Sitara AM335x that are scheduled for July 2014. Let’s checkout BlueSteel-Basic specifications: SoC – Texas Instruments Sitara AM3358BZCZ100 @ 1GHz (2000 MIPS) with PowerVR SGX530 3D GPU (20M Polygons/S) System Memory – 512MB DDR3L @ 800MHz Storage – micro SD slot Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet (RJ45) USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port, 1x mini USB 2.0 port Debugging – Serial header and optional on-board 20-pin CTI JTAG Expansion Connectors Signals: Power 5V, 3.3V, VDD_ADC (1.8V) 3.3V I/O On All Signals McASP0, SPI1, I2C, GPIO (69 max), LCD, GPMC, MMC1, MMC2, 7 AIN …

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BeagleBone Black Gets 4GB Flash, a Price Increase, and Better Availability

The BeagleBone Black has been launched about a year ago, and this low cost ARM Linux board has become pretty popular with hobbyists, robotics courses at universities, and even people making products. The downside is that it has been difficult for CircuitCo, the manufacturer, to keep producing enough boards to match the demand while keeping the price at a low $45 with very little margin, and there are currently about 150,000 boards on distributor back-orders. To improve availability, Beagleboard.org has announced Revision C of the BeagleBone Black with a 4 GB eMMC, which may be easier to source over time than the original 2 GB eMMC, and that will sell for about $5 to $15 more than the previous version, or between $50 and $60. The rest of the hardware specifications remain identical. There’s also a change on the software side, as the board will be pre-loaded with Debian, instead of Angstrom, in order to lower the learning curve for …

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Embedded Linux Conference 2013 Schedule

The Embedded Linux Conference (ELC 2013) will take place on February 20 – 22, 2013 at Park 55 Hotel in San Francisco, California. ELC consists of 3 days of presentations, tutorials and sessions. There will be over 50 sessions during those 3 days. I’ll highlight a few sessions that I find particularly interesting, and that did not get presented at ELCE 2012 (AFAICR). February 20 11:00 – Anatomy of the arm-soc git tree by Olof Johansson, Google We are now two years into the new maintainer model for ARM platforms, and we have settled down into a workflow that maintainers have adjusted well to. Still, when new platforms arrive, or when maintainer ship changes hands, there’s sometimes a bit of ramp-up in getting used to how we organize our git tree and how we prefer to see code submitted to fit that model. This presentation will give an overview of how we have chosen to organize and maintain the arm-soc …

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Supporting 200 Different Expansions Boards: The Broken Promise of Device Tree – ELCE 2012

Koen Kooi, software engineering manager at Circuitco Electronics and lead developer of the Angstrom distribution, explains that device tree does help with the ARM Linux kernel, but brings all the complexity to the bootloader(s), taking the variety of Beaglebone capes as example, at the Embedded Linux Conference in Barcelona, Spain, on November 6, 2012. Abstract: Devicetree is marketed as the one ring to rule them all when it comes to non-discoverable hardware for Linux on ARM. The problem with devicetree is that the complexity gets removed from the kernel and put into the bootloader. Koen first gives an overview of device tree, and provides an example (am33xx.dtsi) to show device tree data structure. Then time for some Beaglebone and capes promotion overview,  before moving to the core of the problem: Pinctrl Resource tracking EVM/bone split uboot/uimage/dtb lockstep pdata only Keycodes and other non-hardware bits You can also download the presentation slides for this talk. Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc started CNX Software …

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