[quote]Quote from abishur on December 2, 2011, 22:36
Wait, why can\'t the r-pi be \"touched commercially\"? The r-pi team has repeatedly said you can re-use the r-pi in a commercial project. The literal only thing we can\'t touch amounts to a piece of firmware. When was the last time any of us dug into the bios of our motherboard and changed it beyond the options available in the bios interface? That\'s really the level we\'re talking about here. All the functionality of the GPU is available via APIs. It\'s amount to complaining because you don\'t know the exact metallurgy behind making your bike. It doesn\'t prevent you from changing each and every last piece of the bike, you just can\'t melt the thing down and build your own from scratch. Stop complaining and go ride your dang bike!
This has nothing to do with permission, heck, unless every customer signed a contract you couldn\'t stop them using a product commercially even if you wanted to. I\'m not talking about the firmware either.
The RaspberryPi can\'t be touched commercially for several reasons:
- There have been no guarantees that the design wont change for X years.
- There\'s no guarantee of standards compliance.
- To meet various commercial standards or project requirements, typically one would develop and prototype on the Pi and then look to produce a custom PCB or variation of the product as required, this also gives control over the production availability, the issue here is the main CPU is not available in quantities viable for many projects and datasheets are not currently available for low-level analysis, chip properties, there\'s no intention to open up the PCB design as a reference etc etc.
It varies from industry to industry but certification is never cheap and sometimes super expensive. If there\'s no way, either through supplier guarantee or through self-manufacture to ensure a product remains unchanged and has a known production lifespan, you can find yourself having to retest or in the worst case redesign or abandon a project.
As an example, I work in the electrical industry where the use of ARM processors is acceptable but tweaks to layout and PCB may be needed for EM reasons. If we test a product in a high-voltage set-up for certification it can cost $20,000 per day of testing. If anything changes since certification, the product needs re-certifying.
The same is typical for many scenarios relating to product development, certification etc though of course not costing anywhere near as much.