Gertboard


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by Grumpy Mike » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:52 pm
Let's hope that the Raspberry shop is fixed before the boards come back.

Is this an open source project are the Gerber files and schematics going to be available?
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by Gert van Loo » Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:58 pm
the_summer said:


Gert said:


Sorry no, there is no 2-wire interface.  Neither is there an I2C interface.


Is it possible to reprogram the pins of maybe the DAC on the avr to work as a TWI/I2C?
The reason why I ask is, that we have quite some sensors (e.g. magnetometer, gyroycope) which work via TWI.



I don't know as I don't know the specification of TWI. As soon as I have some time I will read up on that an give an answer. For now I am a bit busy getting 1000 PCBs produced.
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by Gert van Loo » Mon Mar 19, 2012 3:02 pm
Grumpy Mike said:


Let's hope that the Raspberry shop is fixed before the boards come back.

Is this an open source project are the Gerber files and schematics going to be available?



I have thus far spend >£500 of my own money on prototype boards and various parts, that is excluding the order for a 1000 PCBs which I am working on and a £300 AVR debug kit which I still have to buy. (The one I currently  use is borrowed)  I hope the community will understand that I will try to get some of that money back before I give all the data out for free.
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by RaTTuS » Mon Mar 19, 2012 3:43 pm
Sure Gert , that's fine

more power to you [regulated]
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by bill » Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:41 pm
Gert,

Well done, and thanks from this aging hardware hacker.  Looking forward to getting this board as much as the Raspberry Pi.

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by Golem » Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:59 pm
Best news since the manufacturing of RPi!

Many ``GeRPi`` projects on the horizon.

Congrats!
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by Nestor » Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:12 pm
Hi, we're a Toronto-based online tech magazine (ITBusiness.ca).

we've been following the Raspberry Pi and we wanted to know what people are doing with the device.

Please tell us about your Raspberry Pi experience at: https://www.facebook.com/itbusiness

or at http://blogs.itbusiness.ca/201.....-new-ipad/

thanks

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by Gert van Loo » Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:45 pm
I just spend some time cleaning up the code a bit. I added a copyright notice** and a GPL 3 header to every file so everybody can use it. I have it all wrapped up in a zip file. I am new to releasing code so where should I put that?

** I could not find any GPL example saying: "No copyright at all. Do with this code what you like, just don't restrict it. You don't even have to keep my name in the code and please don't contact me if you want to have anything changed (or not)."   I assume you first have to claim copyright before you can give it all away again.
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by Frank Buss » Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:53 pm
I like Google Code, Sourceforge is nice, too. Both provide a version management system (SVN is easy with TurtoiseSVN for Windows and other tools for Linux), which makes it easier, if more than one works on the project and if you want to compare your code to old versions, if you deleted or refactored something. With both platforms you can release zip files. Another system: GitHub. I never tried Git, some people says it has some advantages compared to SVN.

I don't like the GPL licence, because it is a viral licence: anything you do with source code under this licence needs to be GPL, too. If you really want everyone to do whatever they want with it, even without noticing your name, you could just write this and use no licence. Usually I use the BSD licence, which allows others to do anything with my software, but they should mention my name.
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by dom » Mon Mar 19, 2012 7:40 pm
Yes, GPL is not good if you want people to use your code freely.

We're using Apache (http://www.apache.org/licenses/) for ARM userland code which is a lot less restrictive.

However I don't think there's anything wrong with just claiming "This code is public domain", which I believe is your intention.
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by aprice2704 » Mon Mar 19, 2012 7:43 pm
Gert said:


I have thus far spend >£500 of my own money on prototype boards and various parts, that is excluding the order for a 1000 PCBs which I am working on and a £300 AVR debug kit which I still have to buy. (The one I currently  use is borrowed)  I hope the community will understand that I will try to get some of that money back before I give all the data out for free.


Hey Gert!

May I suggest you look into http://www.kickstarter.com/ for financing.

Also, I repeat my suggestion to talk to adafruit.com and/or sparkfun.com and/or http://www.evilmadscientist.com/ . I think they could be helpful.

:)
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by Blars » Mon Mar 19, 2012 7:52 pm
Gert said:


** I could not find any GPL example saying: "No copyright at all. Do with this code what you like, just don't restrict it. You don't even have to keep my name in the code and please don't contact me if you want to have anything changed (or not)."   I assume you first have to claim copyright before you can give it all away again.


I think one of the Creative Commons licences is closer to what you want -- possibly CC0.  GPL is by intention a viral licence.
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by Gert van Loo » Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:27 pm
Andrew Price said:


Gert said:


I have thus far spend >£500 of my own money on prototype boards and various parts, that is excluding the order for a 1000 PCBs which I am working on and a £300 AVR debug kit which I still have to buy. (The one I currently  use is borrowed)  I hope the community will understand that I will try to get some of that money back before I give all the data out for free.


Hey Gert!

May I suggest you look into http://www.kickstarter.com/ for financing.

Also, I repeat my suggestion to talk to adafruit.com and/or sparkfun.com and/or http://www.evilmadscientist.com/ . I think they could be helpful.

:)



I don't financing. I have the money. I just want some of it back :-)
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by rurwin » Mon Mar 19, 2012 9:02 pm
I think you want the BSD three-clause license.

What you may want to do is put it in the public-domain, but that is not possible under UK law. To get around that I have used the following:


# (C) Richard Urwin 2011
# No rights reserved
# You may treat this program as if it was in the public domain


But having the disclaimer of warranty is probably a good idea, and the knowledgeable minds have said that writing your own licenses is a bad idea; it makes it difficult for others to understand how your license interacts with others.

The Creative Commons licenses were not designed for code, and I would not use them for such.

I would argue with the characterisation of the GPL (certainly v2) as viral. However it does limit how your code can be used. It cannot be combined with commercial software, and other "fairly open" licenses don't work with it either. For what you want, I'd agree it was a bad choice, especially the version 3 variant which can have a viral effect with regards to patent licensing and DRM circumvention measures.
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by Neon22 » Mon Mar 19, 2012 9:17 pm
Gert said:


I just spend some time cleaning up the code a bit. I added a copyright notice** and a GPL 3 header to every file so everybody can use it. I have it all wrapped up in a zip file. I am new to releasing code so where should I put that?

** I could not find any GPL example saying: "No copyright at all. Do with this code what you like, just don't restrict it. You don't even have to keep my name in the code and please don't contact me if you want to have anything changed (or not)."   I assume you first have to claim copyright before you can give it all away again.



Hi Gert,

long running issue with BSD and GPL variants. Of course you could use the WTFPL license :-) (seriously you could)

For your research:

WTFPL and history, WTFPL on wikipedia, gpl vs BSD a viewpoint

YMMV, good luck
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by rurwin » Mon Mar 19, 2012 10:24 pm
BSD vs. GPL is simple to understand.

BSD says do anything you like so long as you respect my rights.

GPL says do anything you like so long as you give everyone the same rights as I'm giving you.

GPLv3 says it in much more complex legal terms that are necessary in this sneaky and patent-encumbered world in order to make it stick.

The MIT license says the same as the BSD license, but takes more words to do so.

The WTFPL says the same as mine, but more colourfully.

Unless you really care deeply,  there is no point using any other long license, so use one of those.
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by aprice2704 » Tue Mar 20, 2012 12:57 am
Gert said:






May I suggest you look into http://www.kickstarter.com/ for financing.


I don't [need] financing. I have the money. I just want some of it back :-)


Well, the issue you are contemplating is how to do that, which is a financing decision. You could either use kickstarter to start a whole 'gertboard' effort/company and thereby recoup your investment ... or talk to manufacturers/distributors who can do all the fulfilment for you. The ones I mentioned, though for-profit entities, share the values of both you and the RPi foundation imo, and so might be suitable partners.

You can always sell the things directly yourself of course, but that is likely to end up taking a lot of extra time and effort that other people are better equipped to do. It seems to me that your time would be better spent dealing with technical/design issues than processing billing, mailing things out and being driven insane by courier companies.

Just my 2p (or cents)
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by arm2 » Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:49 pm
rurwin said:


BSD vs. GPL is simple to understand.

BSD says do anything you like so long as you respect my rights.


I heard BSD described as: "No warranty, do what you want with it,  but credit me and don't sue me"

They also said saying something is "Public domain" has no legal definition so open to dispute.
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by gordon@drogon.net » Sat Mar 24, 2012 12:32 pm
Technical details:

I'm intersted in learning more about the GERTboard at the bit-twiddling level!

I've done a lot of work on Arduinos and I've just put together a little "remote control" system to poke data to/from an Arduino over the (USB) serial line - so any Linux PC can talk to an Arduino (nothing new there), but via my little Library which emulates most of the Arduino "wiring" system - so a program running on the Linux host (and that'll be an RPi when I get my hands on one!) can do stuff like:

pinMode (2,1) // Pin 2 to output

digitalWrite (2, 1) // Pin 2 on

x = analogueRead (4) // Read analog input 4

and so on. This mimics code running natively on an Arduino, but in my case, I'm doing it from C and my BASIC on a Linux host, talking via USB/Serial to the Arduino.

So the idea I have is to extend it to being able to use the same system to poke the GPIO directly and noddle bits and stuff on a GERT board - add in an abstraction layer and off you go:

arduino = drcOpen ("/dev/ttyUSB0")

pinMode (arduino, 2, 1) // Pin 2 on the Arduino to output

digitalWrite (arduino, 2, 1) // Set pin 2 ON on the Ardunio

gpio = drcOpen ("GPIO")

pinMode (gpio, 3,0) // Pin 3 on the GPIO to input

y = digitalRead (gpio,3) // Read the state of pin 3 from the GPIO

gert = drcOpen("GERT")

pinMode (gert, 5, 2) // Set pin 5 on the GERT to PWM

digitalWrite (gert,5,1234) // Set the PWM coutner to 1234 on pin5 on the GERT

You get the drift. (hopefully!) So the essence is that from one high-level language there is a common interface to Arduino(s) over the USB serial line (or in-fact anything over the serial line that talks my 'drc' protocol), or directly to the on-board GPIO, or via the GERT board (who's interface I've yet to find out about!)

So the stuff I'm interested in is knowing the low-level interface between the RPi and the GERT, and also the possibility of putting my own software directly into the Atmel chip on the GERT (since it's the same chip as Arduinos?)

An example in BASIC - my Arduino test board has 10 LEDs connected to pins 2 through 11 (pins 1 & 2 are reserved for the serial line):

  100 ard = DrcOpen ("/dev/ttyUSB0")
110 FOR pn = 2 TO 11 CYCLE
120 PinMode (ard, pn, 1) // Set to output
130 REPEAT
140 //
150 FOR pn = 2 TO 11 CYCLE
160 DigitalWrite (ard, pn, 1)
170 WAIT (0.2)
180 REPEAT
190 FOR pn = 2 TO 11 CYCLE
200 DigitalWrite (ard, pn, 0) // Turn off
210 REPEAT
220 END


So that lights up the LEDs, one at a time, then turns them all off more or less instantly.

When I get some time I'll be publishing all this (GPL), so someone can take the C libraries and apply them to Python or whatever they want to (Python's not really my thing) the actual protocol down the serial line is very simple - 2 bytes to set a bit, 4 bytes to set a PWM value and 4 bytes (2 out and 2 in) to read an analogue port, so super-fast it's not going to be but at 115200 baud, it's over 5000 bit set/resets a second and over 2500 analogue reads a second (which is actually faster than the arduino can handle)

So, GERT board technical details please :-)

Gordon

One of my Arduino test-beds:

Arduino test bed 1
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by Gert van Loo » Sat Mar 24, 2012 12:59 pm
It has an 28-pin DIL socket which can accept ATmega 48..328. I have tested it with a 328P and a 168A.  Al pins come out on headers. The UART headers are adjacent to the RASPi header so to connect them up you use jumpers.

I have been asked several times how the gertboard connects to the Raspberry-board.

I use male headers on both side and a short piece of flat cable as it makes it easier to get to all the signals whilst debugging. You can also use a female header on the bottom of the gertboard and plug it on top of a Rapsberry-Pi. In that case you will need to add some support underneath the board where it sticks out

The original idea was to plug the PI on top of the Gertboard but now the Pi comes with a male header at the top that is unfortunately no  longer an option.

Further status update:

I am have just send the Gerbers out for the third time. The first time there where problems with the format and the second time they could read them but the masks where not alligned. With a two-day turn around I have lost a week :-(

As soon as the  boards are in production I will start working on the technical manual: full schematics and assembly instructions. This evening I will change the GPL text in the example code to BSD and hopefull post full example code tomorrow.
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by gordon@drogon.net » Sat Mar 24, 2012 1:22 pm
Gert said:


It has an 28-pin DIL socket which can accept ATmega 48..328. I have tested it with a 328P and a 168A.  Al pins come out on headers. The UART headers are adjacent to the RASPi header so to connect them up you use jumpers.


Fantastic!

Does that mean that I can connect the serial output on the GPIO connector to the serial port on the AVR chip? If so, then woo hoo Pi-Duino here we come ;-)

(Or in Bristol, one might say; Gert Lush, so calling it the Gert Lush board would be cool, or maybe that's just my weird sense of humour after spending too many years living in Bristol! :-)

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by Nobody » Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:40 am
Gert said:


It has an 28-pin DIL socket which can accept ATmega 48..328. I have tested it with a 328P and a 168A.  Al pins come out on headers. The UART headers are adjacent to the RASPi header so to connect them up you use jumpers.


In that case you do have I²C/TWI (On the AtMega168 its SDA & SCL on pin 28 and 27).


The original idea was to plug the PI on top of the Gertboard but now the Pi comes with a male header at the top that is unfortunately no  longer an option.


AFAIK the Pi won't come with any header, but with holes. Only the prototype boards have (male) header pins.


Further status update:

I am have just send the Gerbers out for the third time. The first time there where problems with the format and the second time they could read them but the masks where not alligned. With a two-day turn around I have lost a week :-(

As soon as the  boards are in production I will start working on the technical manual: full schematics and assembly instructions. This evening I will change the GPL text in the example code to BSD and hopefull post full example code tomorrow.



Would it be possible to export to Eagle as well? Or is that not possible?
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by texy » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:06 pm
Can you confirm how the comms are carried out between the arduino chip and the pi?
Also earlier on it was stated that there is no i2c, but the arduino doe support i2c.
Are the gpio lines for the target project to/from the pi or the 328p or both?
Obviously we are keen to see the circuit, pi software and also the 328p software as well ;-)

T.
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by Gert van Loo » Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:36 pm

AFAIK the Pi won't come with any header, but with holes. Only the prototype boards have (male) header pins.


It seems the male header was left on the BOM (Bill Of Materials) in the first production batch. I am not sure if that was on purpose or by accident. Changing a BOM is always a nightmare so it looks like the first (X-thousand??) will have a male header in place.

My CAD tool can not produce the EAGLE format.
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by Gert van Loo » Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:18 pm
texy said:


Can you confirm how the comms are carried out between the arduino chip and the pi?
Also earlier on it was stated that there is no i2c, but the arduino doe support i2c.
Are the gpio lines for the target project to/from the pi or the 328p or both?
Obviously we are keen to see the circuit, pi software and also the 328p software as well ;-)

T.



All interface signals come out on headers. So you can connect the Atmel chip using any interface you like by making connections. The UART headers Rx/Tx of each chip are adjacent so they are the easiest to connect.

When I said noI2C I meant the Gertboard itself is not using the Raspberry-Pi I2C interface, nor does the board bring the I2C pins through any buffer/protection system. You can still access the GPIO0/GPIO1 lines directly to use them as I2C. Also you can use the Atmel I2C interface. If you want you can connect those headers and have the two devices talk to each other using I2C.

"Are the gpio lines for the target project to/from the pi or the 328p or both?"
Sorry I don't understand the question.

In due time all will be revealed. I think I should release a simple block diagram.
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