[Gta04-owner] Development sicknesses

David Lanzendörfer david.lanzendoerfer at o2s.ch
Sun Jan 15 02:49:37 CET 2012

> Well, Free Open Source *Software* can do this. If you start developing
> hardware you have to invest money for components and prototype
> production in addition to your free time. As long as the amounts are
> small you can handle the project like software: if it doesn't work
> like expected start again (or fix it). That's what I did with the
> first Freerunner Navigation Board. It didn't work very well and during
> the development newer, better chips became available. So I dropped
> everything and started from scratch.
What I was talking about was evolution.
Evolution exactly does NOT restart from scratch.
A T-Rex and a turkey share 80% of their genom.

But we should keep modularity up.

For example, maybe, instead of designing our board exactly
for this certain LCD, we should just put a generic connector onto the
board and use some small flex PCB with an adapter between the mainboard
and the LCD in order to make them fit to each other.

Then we wouldn't have the problem of different pin layout for new LCDs...

> While the new interface connector may costs 5€/piece in small
> quantities, the stencil mask adds at least 200€ to that. And for the
> PCBs you need to calculate at least 500€ per piece (if you order 10).
> That sums up to about 6k€ for every iteration.
500€ per PCB?! O_o
How many layers do we have?!
Aren't there less expensive manufactors around?!
Or maybe there are universities with multilayer-PCB manufacturing equipment?

> Because of these high costs open hardware projects can't change as
> fast as software projects often do :(
Yes. I know.
I can sing songs of it, even with something trivial like the controller circuit for my RepRap... :-/

> And if you'd like to recover the money needed for the development, at
> some point you will need a "stable" product which you can sell. If you
> don't then either you're a millionaire or it was one of you last
> projects.
We should really go over to crystal computers, those you can grow in Vulcanos.
Who's up for Electroplaxes? ^.^

> I hope that explains why the GTA04Ax won't have new display interface
> soon. But you are free to design your own display interface based on
> the GTA04 module variant! All relevant signal lines are available at
> the b2b connectors.
That's a word, and also sounds like an awesome plan.
With a new case we don't have to make our electronics fit into the given case
but we can make the case take all the electronics we need.
So we can drive on a two-branch-way for now.

One one hand, we have the TPO028 connector, on the other hand we also
have a B2B-connector on which we can connect "better" displays.

A Flex-PCB will probably be a lot cheaper then a entirely new Mainboard anyway.

And for a start, I'll test the electonics on grid-hole-copper boards
whose signals I'll get over Flex2DIL adapter.

> Best regards,
>   Christoph
thx a lot for the explanations and my best regards!
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