Ya: expansion bay idea

Werner Almesberger werner at openmoko.org
Mon Jul 12 02:33:53 EDT 2010

The Ben has a bit of free space near the speaker that can be put
to good use. E.g., for adding a connector for the serial console

or for adding the Ben variant of IDBG:

This got me thinking of whether it would be possible to turn
this into a general area for small extension modules.

If removing the speaker, there would be a lot of space, about
400 mm2. Even better, there would be holes for mounting screws.
Sufficiently thin boards could also be mounted directly on the
speaker, although removing them may also mean to remove the

This leaves the problem of making a hole into the case for any
connectors the board may add. There are two issues here: 1)
making complex holes can get messy and you only have one try,
and 2) if using different boards, the case would have to have
holes for all of them.

However, there may be a solution: if the case would have a
large opening covered by a removable plastic piece, one could
just modify that piece, without having to touch the case.

The piece could even be part of the board. Since the pieces
should be very inexpensive to make, Sharism could just sell a
bag of them to people who want to make this kind of additions.

People could of course also build their own covers from other
materials or with a 3D printer.

How does this sound ?

- Werner

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