Ya: expansion bay idea

Carlos Camargo cicamargoba at gmail.com
Mon Jul 12 15:45:39 EDT 2010

I have been thinking about this idea. There are two types of users, SW and
HW, right now, is hard to use the BEN HW for another application, the TPs
are very smalls and are located around the board. So, Is important for YA
make some important signals available for HW hackers.

The first step will be choice which signals are useful for HW hackers. Then,
we must choice the best way to provide them.

As Wolfgang said Ya will have the same case than BEN, maybe with an
aditional USB host port. so, My proposal for YA expansion is similar to
Werner's idea, but include more signals, like data, address & control buses.
I like the NINTENDO's cartridge format, you ca use this interface to plug
any HW like cameras, GPS, etc. If we place a footprint under the battery,
the HW people can use it, and for the commercial product we don't populate
this component.

Best Regards


On Mon, Jul 12, 2010 at 1:21 PM, Bas Wijnen <wijnen at debian.org> wrote:

> Hi,
> I like the idea.  If you just make a connector with some interesting
> pins (serial, some unused gpio), you can turn the ben into a mini-SAKC.
> :-)
> Adding boards inside the Ben doesn't sound very useful to me, as I would
> probably want to change what's connected all the time.  But of course
> that may be just me; I do see the beauty of having it inside, and can
> imagine that some people only connect one thing anyway.
> Removing the speaker sounds like a big sacrifice, though.
> Also, the modifiable case is a very good idea IMO. :-)
> Thanks,
> Bas
> On Mon, Jul 12, 2010 at 03:33:53AM -0300, Werner Almesberger wrote:
> > 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
> > http://en.qi-hardware.com/wiki/File:Hwmod_serial_1.jpg
> >
> > or for adding the Ben variant of IDBG:
> > http://www.almesberger.net/misc/ben/idbg-v1-pcb.jpg
> > http://www.almesberger.net/misc/ben/idbg-v1-case.jpg
> >
> > 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
> > speaker.
> >
> > 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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Carlos Iván Camargo Bareño
Profesor Asistente
Departamento de Ingeniería Eléctrica y Electrónica
Universidad Nacional de Colombia
cicamargoba at unal.edu.co
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