Nanonote End of life

Ron K. Jeffries rjeffries at
Tue Feb 11 19:07:24 EST 2014

The Ben Nanonote was (and is) a very cool device. For several reasons less
than 1,500 were sold over the entire life of the device.
The world has changed a lot since the Nanonote was launched.
Instead of looking at how to tweak that design, a more productive approach
might be to understand what this NICHE market wants that can not be
purchased elsewhere. And how much will these enthusiastic, dedicated
(almost fanatical..) people pay?

We live in a world drowning in very nice small computing devices with great
screens and great specs. These mainly run Linux with Andorid on top. They
do not meet the desire many have for hardware that is open in specification
and design, and by and large the software is more closed than open.

Note that the Neo900 project is very interesting. However it want to be a
mobile phone, a HUGE challenge that is outside the scope of any attempt to
build son of Ben [Nanonote] (or SOB for short) LOL

The first question before investing time to discuss how one might do a next
device is to identify:

-- why people want an open device.

-- what are the main use cases

-- what are a FEW defining features:

runs linux (no closed BLOBS required for basic use cases)
fits in a front pocket,
clamshell design (?)
nice physical keyboard,
has wireless internet connectivity (can use in internet cafe)
8 hour battery life,
color display (resolution TBD)
1 x USB on the go
1 x microSD system
1 x microSD user filesystem
BT 4.0 (BTLE) for several reasons including anelok and larger keyboards etc

-- what RETAIL selling price is required to sell in volume? (needs to
support distribution)

I have some ideas I'll share if a discussion gets going.

Ron K Jeffries
I am not an engineer. But I do understand product management and teh
business side.
my on-line calling card (if you care) is

Ron K. Jeffries

On Tue, Feb 11, 2014 at 2:30 PM, Mark Tuson <markfptuson at> wrote:

>  I was thinking about this a little - but I don't think my thoughts could
> be done open-source: I was just thinking of a pocket-size successor,
> initial thought being a 640*480 resistive touchscreen and one of those Atom
> SoCs. But the SoC is non-free, and way too expensive.
> On 11/02/2014 21:58, James "Xakh" Lynch wrote:
> So. What, realistically, needs to happen to breathe a little gasp of air
> into this project? Not necessarily getting an nn factory running next week,
> but to get a design on the table?
> On Feb 11, 2014 4:26 PM, "Ron K. Jeffries" <rjeffries at> wrote:
>> Y do you make that mistake?
>> sorry, but I could not resist making a teeny, tiny, gnat-sized pun.
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