I wandered over to the TI booth at the Embedded Systems Conference to check out the Beaglebone and the MSP430 Launchpad. We haven’t built any Beaglebones yet, but a few years back we took the Open source Beagleboard files and built up a couple to show our package-on-package (PoP) workmanship. The Beaglebone doesn’t use PoP, but it is open source. As are the “Capes.” They call their expansion cards capes. I get a vision of Underdog when I hear that name.
What caught my eye was their selection of Capes available now.
All of those are open source. They provide functionality such as displays, battery power, CAN, prototyping and more.
The other product I looked at was the MSP430 Launchpad. I’ve been getting to know the launchpad myself and wanted to see what’s new with it. The unit shown here has a DSP and a little display driven by the MSP430. It’s a MP3 player with the purpose of introducing the DSP and MSP430 / DSP combination.
TI is doing an amazing job of making evaluation of its chips easy and inexpensive. I’ve seen a few other companies providing more complete and less expensive than traditional dev boards as well. NXP with their LPC series to name one. It’s a good idea and a good trend as far as I’m concerned.
Robots good. Neurotic thermonuclear devices bad.