I made a Raspberry PI Laptop


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by Jim Manley » Tue Mar 05, 2013 5:34 am
There have been multiple posts (some by me) about the Droid Bionic lapdock being identical to the Atrix lapdock, except that the micro-HDMI and micro-USB connectors on the dock cradle are rotated 180 degrees around their longitudinal axis from those on the Atrix model. The Bionic is the follow-on to the Atrix, which it has replaced, and so the Bionic lapdock has replaced the Atrix lapdock. Unfortunately, Motorola has discontinued manufacturing of all of the lapdock models, so get 'em while they're hot.

Connecting HDMI only to the lapdock only gets you the video and digital audio on the lapdock. The lapdock keyboard, trackpad, USB hub, and batteries can't be used without a connection between a Pi USB port and the lapdock micro-USB port. It's kind of a waste to not take advantage of all of the lapdock's capabilities you're paying for (albeit at a bargain-basement price).

The cable mod is "simpler" than the polyfuse shorting method for some people for the straightforward reason that it doesn't void the board's warranty or risk irreversible damage should something besides an intended polyfuse be desoldered/shorted. Neither is for the faint of heart or a first-time soldering project, but they pose vastly different risks.
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by timb » Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:13 pm
johnbeetem wrote:It's very difficult because the wires are tiny and fragile. But it's been done, e.g, http://andreiprojects.blogspot.ro/2012/ ... pdock.html

There's a section on Atrix Lapdock with links to other resources (such as photos) at the RasPi Hardware Wiki: http://elinux.org/RPi_Screens#Motorola_Atrix_Lapdock You might want to take a look there to see what you're getting into. Lots of 0.5 mm pitch connectors in there :shock:


Yeah, I've seen the first link. I know the wires are tiny, which isn't a big deal, just clamp and solder away. I'll physically tie the cable inside somehow, most likely with Epoxy and a strain relief made out of Sugru.
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by campsec » Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:49 pm
I have a Motorola Droid Bionic Lapdock, with similar issues. I have carefully tested all my cables and made sure power on the pi was up to spec. Using the 'Y' cable I built I see 4.87 volts at the GPIO pins.

The problem I was having was that my Pi did not see the Lapdock keyboard and trackpad. After trying a ton of things I finally got everything working by running the Lapdock hub connection through an old USB 1.0 hub and then into the Pi. Looks to me like the Pi can't communicate correctly with the hub in the lapdock unless you slow it down. Modifying cmdline.txt and adding dwc_otg.speed=1 did not help my issue. I believe both my Kernel and GPU firmware are the latest:
uname -a
Linux raspberrypi 3.6.11+ #389 PREEMPT Wed Mar 6 12:43:30 GMT 2013 armv6l GNU/Linux

/opt/vc/bin/vcgencmd version
Mar 4 2013 22:02:46
Copyright (c) 2012 Broadcom
version 374489 (release)

Any suggestions for something else I can try? I would love to get rid of that old hub.
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by johnbeetem » Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:19 pm
campsec wrote:I have a Motorola Droid Bionic Lapdock, with similar issues. I have carefully tested all my cables and made sure power on the pi was up to spec. Using the 'Y' cable I built I see 4.87 volts at the GPIO pins.

The problem I was having was that my Pi did not see the Lapdock keyboard and trackpad. After trying a ton of things I finally got everything working by running the Lapdock hub connection through an old USB 1.0 hub and then into the Pi...

Any suggestions for something else I can try? I would love to get rid of that old hub.

Sounds like an out-of-spec contact on your USB cable's male USB A plug, the one that plugs into a RasPi USB A port or your hub's downstream A port. One way this can happen is that RasPi's USB A jack has a contact that is slightly flattened so it doesn't make good contact with some plugs. If you're using a double-male USB A adapter or cable, try replacing or reversing it. Also try both RasPi USB ports -- one may make better contact than the other. You could also try replacing your hub with a USB extension cable with USB A male on one end and USB A female on the other.
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by campsec » Fri Mar 08, 2013 4:08 am
The problem I'm experiencing is related to the Raspberry Pi being unable to process the USB transactions from the Lapdock. I have used a number of USB devices on both of the USB ports on the Raspberry Pi. All the cables have had very few insertions and are not defective. This is a failure of the Pi to process USB 2.0 events properly. Not a cable issue. The failure has been observed on both of the Pi USB ports. As soon as I pass the USB events through the USB 1.0 hub into the Pi everything is fine. When the Pi errors I see the following message in dmesg:
New full-speed USB device unmber 70 using dwc_otg
device descriptor read/64, error -32
etc. This is observed for all the ports in the Lapdock. I'm hoping some firmware related option allows the Pi to operate with the Lapdock correctly or a later revision of firmware resolves this issue. I switched in a new Pi and it errors exactly the same way. Works if I run the Lapdock USB through a USB 1.0 Hub and fails if I connect the lapdock USB data cable directly to the Pi.
Thanks for your suggestions.
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by johnbeetem » Fri Mar 08, 2013 8:11 pm
campsec wrote:..When the Pi errors I see the following message in dmesg:
New full-speed USB device unmber 70 using dwc_otg
device descriptor read/64, error -32
etc. This is observed for all the ports in the Lapdock. I'm hoping some firmware related option allows the Pi to operate with the Lapdock correctly or a later revision of firmware resolves this issue. I switched in a new Pi and it errors exactly the same way. Works if I run the Lapdock USB through a USB 1.0 Hub and fails if I connect the lapdock USB data cable directly to the Pi.

Hmm, maybe something is broken in the release you're using. I'm still on Debian Squeeze 6-19-04-2012. There's been a lot of USB performance tuning since then.
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by Jim Manley » Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:29 pm
Make sure you're using the latest Raspbian Wheezy distro of February 9, 2013 and even after installing that do an apt-get update && apt-get upgrade to update the distro database, firmware, and base packages. IIRC, there were a number of firmware improvements that addressed at least some of the USB issues in the distro releases toward the end of 2012.
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by Mr Floppy » Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:39 pm
Well, I was waiting for a Model A but it still hasn't made it here yet but here is my Pi Dock.
The process started last year around october and I got my connectors around mid January.

I got a Jewish keyboard version of the lapdock. The only issue is that I have to remap the | key to be actually | rather than the #. Fixed by selecting the right keyboard layout (US will suffice) in the config but remapping works better for me as I'm used to have certain keys in certain positions. As Bens Outlet didn't ship overseas, I had to wait until Christmas for Santa to bring it .. well a relative anyway.

The connectors, well they took a long time to get here. As I mentioned earlier in this thread, I expected to receive some cables with the lapdock, but there were no cables. So instead I ordered some parts from from DX.
SKU: 176849 - CY HD-089 Male D Type Micro HDMI to Female Micro HDMI Cable for Motorola Cell Phones - Black (60cm). The cable is not 60 cm.
SKU: 172524 - Micro USB Female to USB Male Adapter - Black
I had to shave these down like so:
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SKU: 66079 - HDMI Male to Micro HDMI Female Adapter, goes on the end of the HDMI cable
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Then connected to the dock like so:
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I tried using a short USB extension cable but I was getting quite a voltage drop from the cable that did all sorts of things such as failing to boot, repeating keys, no track pad.

Ta Da:
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by timb » Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:58 pm
Here's a good image taken under magnification (original shot in TIFF on my iPhone 5 under a magnified ring lamp) of the JHDMI connector and cable fully exposed. There's multiple smaller bundles wrapped in a larger bundle. It looks like all the ground lines (sans DDC/CEC) are tied together, so if you're making your own cable that should save you some time as you can just bundle all the grounds. Take note of the DDC/CEC ground which has a clear plastic coating over it. You'll want to hook this into a small toggle switch connected to ground for power on / power off. (I'll be hooking mine into a small array of transistors and embedding a small touch switch under the top cover with an LED for power functions.)

Full Sized 800x800 Lossless JPEG
Image

More pics of the full cable assembly coming soon!
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by johnbeetem » Mon Mar 18, 2013 5:35 pm
timb wrote:Here's a good image taken under magnification (original shot in TIFF on my iPhone 5 under a magnified ring lamp) of the JHDMI connector and cable fully exposed. There's multiple smaller bundles wrapped in a larger bundle. It looks like all the ground lines (sans DDC/CEC) are tied together, so if you're making your own cable that should save you some time as you can just bundle all the grounds. Take note of the DDC/CEC ground which has a clear plastic coating over it. You'll want to hook this into a small toggle switch connected to ground for power on / power off. (I'll be hooking mine into a small array of transistors and embedding a small touch switch under the top cover with an LED for power functions.)

Very nice picture. Thank you for posting.

You should only need a small transistor to pull down the DDC/CEC ground line. I only measured 64 uA (yes, micro as in 160K Ohm pull-up) when I was investigating DDC/CEC ground. Your Atrix may be different, so do check it yourself. When the switch is open, DDC/CEC ground goes up to approximately 10V, so be sure your transistor can handle high voltages -- say 20V or more. My 'blog post: http://www.element14.com/community/grou ... ork-around
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by timb » Mon Mar 18, 2013 5:50 pm
Thanks man. I got it up and running last night! :!:

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Now to bundle and heat shrink all the wires together and tackle the USB side. By the way, I couldn't have done it without your blog. I went through and made a pinout of my particular HDMI cable and having a list of all the JHDMI pinouts was invaluable.
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by Jim Manley » Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:35 pm
Eben happened to stop by (unannounced) at the Raspberry Jam Silicon Valley at the Computer History Museum for its last hour on Saturday, March 16th, since he was seven miles away at the annual PyCon (Python programming language Conference) where he gave the keynote Friday morning (which Liz has posted in the home page blog). We wound up blabbing for six hours (!) Saturday evening and one of the topics we touched on was that, since the lapdocks were made by Googorola/Motoroogle (Google now owns Motorola), perhaps they could adapt the lapdock design to provide enough room to incorporate a Pi board (a Model B without connectors installed would make that easier, but Eben did NOT say that, it's just an obvious fact).

If Googorola/Motoroogle can be convinced to produce a PiTop/LapPi, I believe (my personal option only) that Eben would strongly support that. If even 10% of all Pi boards eventually wound up in such a device, it could be a larger number (possibly hundreds of thousands?) than many individual laptop/netbook models have shipped. Googorola/Motoroogle folks who I know read the forum, perhaps the Pi Foundation could anoint someone as a local enthusiast who could represent typical Pi users' needs and desires (not always the same thing). I'm local and am willing to help in any way necessary.

AGAIN, THIS IS NOT A PRODUCT ANNOUNCEMENT OR AN OFFICIAL/UNOFFICIAL FOUNDATION STATEMENT AS THERE'S NO WAY THEY WOULD ALLOW ME TO REPRESENT THEM. THIS IS JUST A BRAIN-FART AMONG GEEKS WITH A COMMON VISION FOR NOW. Did I make it clear enough that I am in no way speaking for Eben, the Foundation, Googorola/Motoroogle, or anyone or anything else? That being said, feel free to write your Congresscritter/Parlia-mental-arian/Googorola/Motoroogle representative that you demand your PiTop/LapPi ... and your MTV! :D
The best things in life aren't things ... but, a Pi comes pretty darned close! :D
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by FlipBumWalla » Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:41 pm
Jim Manley wrote:... Did I make it clear enough that I am in no way speaking for Eben, the Foundation, Googorola/Motoroogle, or anyone or anything else? That being said, feel free to write your Congresscritter/Parlia-mental-arian/Googorola/Motoroogle representative that you demand your PiTop/LapPi ... and your MTV! :D

Nicely put, Jim. I agree completely. It would be a great evolution!
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by timb » Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:43 pm
These things originally sold for what, $500? The only reason they're popular now is because South Coast Boutique was having a fire sale and letting these things go at $50 each. I'm sure that was at a loss.

How much do you think they would realistically charge for this if they resurrected it for the RPi? $250 minimum I bet. Who's going to pay that to stick a $35 computer in?
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by timb » Tue Mar 19, 2013 4:54 am
Well, I got my conversion finished tonight!

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There's a hardwired one meter HDMI cord coming out of the rear, along with a one inch micro-USB that's been connected to a short micro-USB female to USB A female adapter. From here you can use any size USB A male-male cable to connect to your RPi. Currently I've also got a small wire pair running out the back with a crimp on style coupler connected to each lead. Connecting this together turns the unit on. (This is a temporary solution until I get the transistor switch in place.)

As you can see in the last picture all the wires coming out are very secure, including internal and external standoffs. I've taken the dock unit off completely and replaced it with a small steel bar that runs across, which is what the wires are attached to. Everything is very stable, screen is crystal clear, it all just sort of works!

I was really surprised, to be honest. After spending around 6 hours last night meticulously taking apart an HDMI cable and figuring out the wiring arrangement, I soldered everything in place using johnbeetem's JHDMI cable pinout and it worked on the first go, no mistakes.
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by Jim Manley » Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:52 pm
timb wrote:These things originally sold for what, $500? The only reason they're popular now is because South Coast Boutique was having a fire sale and letting these things go at $50 each. I'm sure that was at a loss.
How much do you think they would realistically charge for this if they resurrected it for the RPi? $250 minimum I bet. Who's going to pay that to stick a $35 computer in?

You're using OldeThinke from the ancient past, aka B.P., "Before Pi" ... which is any time more than just a year ago :)

I doubt anyone paid the $499.99 original retail price of the Atrix lapdocks, except perhaps the actual target customers, business people who couldn't care less what the price was since someone else was paying for it, as long as they could have the latest shiny new toy on the block before anyone else. The typical "street" price dropped to $299.99 within months, and many factory-sealed units are fetching around $100 on Amazon now that they're no longer available from the surplus clearance dumpmasters who had no idea what the actual value is.

The technology in the lapdocks is now about three years old, since it takes a year to get to volume production after the design start date for current-generation parts. Now that they're three year old parts, their cost is much lower. Even so, the quite thin and light batteries provide upwards of 4 ~ 6 hours of power. The display is better than that found on most laptops of that size (sub-12 inches), the cost of just a stand-alone HDMI monitor of that size and quality is more than $100, and will be much heavier. There's a USB hub built-in and the trackpad is not bad at all. I'll bet that anyone who does parts sourcing for a living can get everything needed to build a PiTop/LapPi for well under $100 because there's no development costs involved (modulo perhaps modding the case molds to make room for the Pi board) and the generic parts prices are as low as they're going to get. Since we know from the Pi factory videos that robot labor is cheaper, more accurate, and more productive than even Asian slave labor, the cost of assembly and testing will be minimal.

Another difference between the Atrix/Bionic lapdock and potential PiTop/LapPi markets is that there are already over a million Pii out in the wild and there haven't even been any large educational buys yet (the intended target market). If every science and math teacher were able to buy a PiTop/LapPi for each student at the actual cost of parts, assembly, and bulk shipping (the Pi economic model, in essence), that total cost could be under $100. The reason is because there would be no development, marketing, or capital costs involved, which can easily exceed 80% of the retail price of a typical consumer or business oriented product with a relatively small market size, due to risk - which describes the Atrix/Bionic lapdock market to a tee. Educational buys are paid for up-front with purchase orders (cash within days in today's banking system), with a typical required delivery period of 90 days. This is easily achievable once the POs are received and the more submitted at one time, the merrier (which describes bulk government buys to the letter).

One point of resistance to Pi acquisition, in general, is the existing Wintel/Apple-oriented IT bureaucracy that has been established over the last few decades that resulted in the UK ICT debacle (and similar results elsewhere) in large part. There would be unimaginable pressure on politicians by the current educational IT suppliers if any alternative to the status quo were pursued. Fortunately, the constituency that matters for the Pi, the science and math teachers, is pretty well fed up with the existing bureaucracy and would welcome the Pi and a PiTop/LapPi option. The way that most students get access to computers is in dedicated labs or on charging/configuration carts where everything is nailed down and under such rigid configuration management (typically due to Wintel system info security weaknesses and resetting between each session to a known state) that the possibilities for experimentation are completely scrubbed clean.

The Pi low hardware cost (It no workee any more? Have the students fix it or recycle it!) and open-source-software-on-SD-card approach, where Wintel info insecurity doesn't exist and configuration resetting is an SD card overwrite away, eliminates the need for the IT bureaucracy, which is why it will also resist Pi acquisition. The system administration being done by the students and educators would be part of the educational process instead of an adjunct bureaucratic cost. If you think corporate IT bureaucracies are immovable objects, imagine them being paid well below market rates as is the case in educational institutions. Most teachers wind up taking matters into their own hands rather than deal with the existing unresponsive IT system, anyway. That fact should just be accepted and reflected in STEM educational computing programs. Once the science and math departments have been liberated, the other departments may decide that they don't like the status quo, either.

A PiTop/LapPi would make it even easier for Pi technology to enter classrooms as they would be self-contained systems with integrated displays, keyboards, trackpads, additional USB ports, and battery power - just what's needed in a lab environment, especially in the field, where typical classroom computing devices are seldom seen. Ah, to dream, perchance to sleep (yes, I know my Shakespeare well enough that I reverse the temporal order of those two states as I get little chance to do much of either these days ):
The best things in life aren't things ... but, a Pi comes pretty darned close! :D
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by johnbeetem » Tue Mar 19, 2013 6:38 pm
timb wrote:These things originally sold for what, $500? The only reason they're popular now is because South Coast Boutique was having a fire sale and letting these things go at $50 each. I'm sure that was at a loss.

How much do you think they would realistically charge for this if they resurrected it for the RPi? $250 minimum I bet. Who's going to pay that to stick a $35 computer in?

I agree with your analysis. One can quibble about how much the $250 number can be lowered, but for the present that same $250 gets you a Samsung Chromebook (1.7 GHz dual Cortex-A15) and $200 gets you an Acer Chromebook with 1.1 GHz Celeron, both with 2 GB DDR3.

The Lapdock was a rare opportunity to acquire a very nice, well-built piece of hardware that missed its market at a remaindered price. Personally, I find the fact that it doesn't have its own CPU to be a huge advantage, so I can also use it with a BeagleBoard, BeagleBone, or whatever else I want to play around with.
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by timb » Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:23 pm
Jim Manley wrote:You're using OldeThinke from the ancient past, aka B.P., "Before Pi" ... which is any time more than just a year ago :)

<Snip>


Kudos to the really well thought out, insightful post. I want to disagree, but I really can't (on principle, at least). I'm sure they could lower the cost by using plastics instead of metal, having a slightly cheaper display and removing the dock component (replacing it with micro HDMI and USB micro female ports on the back). Something like that would be fantastic for not only the RPi but also other embedded systems (BeagleBoard, etc.) like you mention.

That said...

johnbeetem wrote:I agree with your analysis. One can quibble about how much the $250 number can be lowered, but for the present that same $250 gets you a Samsung Chromebook (1.7 GHz dual Cortex-A15) and $200 gets you an Acer Chromebook with 1.1 GHz Celeron, both with 2 GB DDR3.

The Lapdock was a rare opportunity to acquire a very nice, well-built piece of hardware that missed its market at a remaindered price. Personally, I find the fact that it doesn't have its own CPU to be a huge advantage, so I can also use it with a BeagleBoard, BeagleBone, or whatever else I want to play around with.


This is the reality of the situation. For EDU environments, I just don't see a RPi + Lapdock for each student being practical or cost effective. While the RPi is a great $35 computer that's basically disposable if it breaks, the Lapdock would end up being a $100-$200 piece of hardware that you're entrusting in the hands of a child.

The beauty of the RPi for educational use is the fact that you can hook it to your existing TV, keyboard and mouse and start working with basically no overhead cost. But once you start adding in the cost of a Lapdock, why not give the kids an OLPC? A Chromebook? A cheap Android tablet?

To me, the RPi is the soul of a Commodore 64 in a modern package. When I went grade school, each classroom had C64s in them. I had taught myself BASIC programming during lunches and recess through books at the library. I remember when I was about 8 years old (1992) my parents got our first computer. It was a used Packard Bell 386SX; they had just opened a business and needed something for word processing and accounting.

I spent all my free time on that thing writing games and even a few applications for my parents business (specialized calculators, inventory management, stuff like that). Anyway, long story short they ended up buying me my own system the next year at a computer show. Some no-name 486 that constantly had issues due to the cheap parts.

As a kid, if you would have given me something like the Raspberry Pi, a little box I could just plug into my TV and it was a full computer? Something small I could literally put in my pocket and take over to a friend's house? Something that was so cheap that if I broke it I could mow two lawns and buy a new one? Something like that would have been the holy grail for me as a nerdy kid.

But I digress... The bottom line I guess is that I could see someone bringing the Lapdock back in a more generic form. Just standard HDMI and USB ports on the back and a normal power button. Solely for use as (essentially) a portable KVM. Price it around $150 and I guarantee it will sell. But I just don't see some sort of educational renascence appearing around it.

After all, that's why I hardwired a HDMI cable into mine! (Funny story, I finished the Lapdock HDMI cable yesterday and my micro HDMI female to female adapter arrived today. :lol: If I would have waited a day I wouldn't have had to do all that extra work. Ah well, I think it works better hardwired anyway!)
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by timb » Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:27 pm
johnbeetem wrote::geek:


Thanks again for all the work you did on figuring out the JHDMI connector, by the way. You have certainly helped many people get their Lapdocks going!

I actually just ordered a second unit off Amazon.com for $75 to keep as a spare. That's how useful these things are to me.
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by Jim Manley » Wed Mar 20, 2013 1:17 am
timb wrote:Kudos to the really well thought out, insightful post. I want to disagree, but I really can't (on principle, at least). I'm sure they could lower the cost by using plastics instead of metal, having a slightly cheaper display and removing the dock component (replacing it with micro HDMI and USB micro female ports on the back). Something like that would be fantastic for not only the RPi but also other embedded systems (BeagleBoard, etc.) like you mention.

Great point - there are reportedly 100,000 BeagleBoards/Bones Out There ... and who knows how many other boards that could make use of the lapdock features (IIRC, the original inspiration for our cobbled PiTops/LapPii was some kind of development board mind-melded with an Atrix lapdock).
johnbeetem wrote:I agree with your analysis. One can quibble about how much the $250 number can be lowered, but for the present that same $250 gets you a Samsung Chromebook (1.7 GHz dual Cortex-A15) and $200 gets you an Acer Chromebook with 1.1 GHz Celeron, both with 2 GB DDR3.

The Lapdock was a rare opportunity to acquire a very nice, well-built piece of hardware that missed its market at a remaindered price. Personally, I find the fact that it doesn't have its own CPU to be a huge advantage, so I can also use it with a BeagleBoard, BeagleBone, or whatever else I want to play around with.

I completely agree with you, John - this will remain an Official Brain Fart unless enough up-front money magically appears, aka pay-before-play. There is strong evidence that a good chunk of the million-plus Pii in the wild were bought by parents for their kids and even schools and teachers who have shown the ability to make good use of such adjuncts to their curricula (a lot of iPads wound up in schools early on for this very reason). Parents, enlightened STEM teachers, and hobbyists might provide the absolute minimum of tens of thousands of orders that would be needed to get this off the ground.

timb wrote:This is the reality of the situation. For EDU environments, I just don't see a RPi + Lapdock for each student being practical or cost effective. While the RPi is a great $35 computer that's basically disposable if it breaks, the Lapdock would end up being a $100-$200 piece of hardware that you're entrusting in the hands of a child.

The beauty of the RPi for educational use is the fact that you can hook it to your existing TV, keyboard and mouse and start working with basically no overhead cost. But once you start adding in the cost of a Lapdock, why not give the kids an OLPC? A Chromebook? A cheap Android tablet?

The only way a PiTop/LapPi makes any sense is below $100 and there is room to reduce features such as battery life and screen resolution to accomplish that price as long as the components are already available off-the-shelf. We're not talking about replacing the Pi - just providing a low-friction means of overcoming real issues of the availability in classrooms of HDMI/DVI-D displays, keyboards, pointing devices, USB hubs, etc., to use with Pii. Just the issue of most classroom PC displays only having VGA inputs is a significant Pi impediment (externally - many are only lacking the connector for DVI-D, as the circuitry is often inside).

The snake pit of cables that need to spew from all sides of the Pi are another significant issue anywhere but on a lab bench being truly used as such (e.g., adding GPIO wiring to external projects such as Arduinos, robotics, etc.). A PiTop/LapPi would have to provide access to the GPIO/CSI/DSI interfaces - the rest of the wiring is actually a serious detriment (it's waaaay too easy to interrupt power if the micro-USB input is used and the cable is flexed upward).

We agree on everything else ... except computing for me started literally on the ground floor ... of my parents house, as in the living room floor and my bedroom floor, where I assembled and operated my mid-1960s era Digi-Comp I three-bit plastic, metal-rod, and rubber-band computer that was programmed with bits of soda straw. Yeah, I'm really hard(ware)-core :lol:

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by timb » Wed Mar 20, 2013 2:12 am
I've got some designs sketched out for an RPi case that incorporates the micro-USB/HDMI connectors on one side (allowing you to dock the RPi in place, as intended) and then has full sized HDMI and USB connectors integrated on the top of the case that allow you to just swivel them down into the connectors on the board once it's placed in the case.

You'd also have a small power switch on the case to control the DDC/CEC ground on the Lapdock, in addition to a, say, 10 farad capacitor on the 5v USB input to keep power for the second or so after shutting the lid. For the hell of it I'd add a RTC and I2C battery fuel gauge chip from Maxim to monitor the Lapdock's battery level and charge status (and do a safe shutdown if your battery was about to die, etc.)

I've been doing some pricing and I think I could get them produced for around $50 each (assuming an initial run of 1000).

Speaking of battery life, I'm on hour 7 right now and still have 1 bar left. RPi B Rev 2 with an Edimax Wifi Adapter. I've been downloading, installing and compiling pretty much the entire time. I'd say the display was only blanked 20% of the time (and even then, the backlights still run). Maximum brightness as well. That's pretty impressive to be honest.

Speaking of that, two questions:

1) Is it possible to get the screen to actually sleep on this, instead of just black out? Right now after a few minutes of idle the display will go black, but it doesn't actually sleep (as the backlight is still on).

2) Any word on a mouse driver for this? I know the pad is multi-touch capable. Two-finger scrolling would be really nice, but I'd settle for edge scrolling if that would be possible. Three finger middle click would be great as well, but again I'd settle for some sort of hack like right+left = middle click or something.
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by malakai » Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:00 pm
Haven't purchased from here in the US coworker has bought from them though:

$50 Lapdock includes shipping

http://www.icemonkey.com/motorola-droid-bionic-lapdock-with-11-6-display-full-size-keyboard-web-browser-and-charger

If anyone is still looking for a deal.
http://www.raspians.com - always looking for content feel free to ask to have it posted. Or sign up and message me to become a contributor to the site. Raspians is not affiliated with the Raspberry Pi Foundation. (RPi's + You = Raspians)
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by bluem6 » Fri Mar 22, 2013 5:09 pm
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by timb » Sun Mar 24, 2013 6:36 am
Just wanted to let you guys know I have about 100 each PCB mount micro HDMI female, USB micro female, USB B female and HDMI female connectors coming from China. I've designed a small PCB to route the connections. The board will fit in place on the Lapdock and adapt it to standard female USB B and HDMI female connectors.

Once the parts get here I'll post some pictures of the first prototype.
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by b87lar » Wed Mar 27, 2013 4:17 pm
With the help of this forum I am one of those who managed to set up a pi laptop (in my case using the bionic lapdock). Everything seems to work fine except the following two issues which i tried to hammer on for a while without success. Could please suggest/point me in the right direction - will be greatly appreciated:

(1) can't get the lapdock speakers to work. I verified that the Pi sends audio to the hdmi device. When connected to another hdmi monitor the sound works fine. The lapdock has two volume keys (Fn+Speaker) which do not seem to have any effect (there's no on-screen level displayed either when pressing these keys, and there's no change in sound). I am aware of an issue described by other whereby the volume changes from "no-sound" to "full-sound" only. But I can't even get that. Any ideas?

(2) have a few strange keys mappings: instead of "@" above "2" There's a double quote " and instead of "#" above "3" there's the UK symbol for pound (currency). But the key labels are @ and #. Also the key labeled "\" and "|" gives a ~tilde and #pound. I tried to choose a few different keyboard layouts but I am just fumbling. Anyone has a similar experience w/bionic lapdock, any advice will be highly appreciated!

Thanks
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