Burngate wrote:So you redesign the board to have mounting holes - or any other mounting system your ingenuity can come up with.
But now, inserting or removing cables, or even moving the cables, particularly the rather thick and inflexible HDMI, will stress the board round the mounting. The more rigidly the board is mounted, the more stress there will be on the card round mounting points.
Far better in my arrogant opinion is to leave the board as it is and restrain the cables.
Which is fine in the controlled environment of the geek's basement. Just don't spill any coffee on it! Or dare to use it for an application that requires a bit of protection.
It's current form factor suits the "educational computer" thing ok. Perhaps one day there *might* be a board with a more friendly / robust layout. Perhaps someone else is watching Pi development and thinking of making something very similar, but "better" (and pondering issues such as sourcing components in less than galactic quantities).
I guess this is why a lot of approaches are still in the form of "big general purpose box + interface + software" or "microcontroller / dsp chip + sdk + support hardware".
I suppose too that I've just always been sore that the Chinese are wasting the Earth's resources on sub consumer grade chaff when they could be building "useful" stuff. Often all that's wanting is proper documentation, mature drivers and whatnot, but it seems to be a general rule that before a product is finished it's already obsolete and is abandoned for something even more bleeding edge and flakey. There's not much out there that bridges the yawning gap between "consumer" and "industrial".
The Pi has the potential to be different - a platform that matures gracefully. But the software is the easy bit. There's a bit of a leap of faith required in hoping that the hardware will grow into something that can venture beyond the proto bench (or the back of the telly via a bit of blu-tak) and into a possibly hostile world. Hopefully one day, but the kids have to get their Pi first.