Back to System on a Board

LocalPOD is off to a great start.  The Kickstarter campaign did not complete but it had two supporters.  Plus all of the people who provided advice really should be counted too!  But that’s business stuff; back to technology!

I have been able to clarify what LocalPOD is: an “all-in-one portable data networking hub.”  One might have a bluetooth camera or speaker that just doesn’t connect to a computer.  Or one might want to use a hotspot on a new computer.  One might want to use a wired USB keyboard on one’s cellphone. There are a variety of other connectivity combinations where LocalPOD may help.

So the prototyping phase of LocalPOD is really over.   That’s good because Intel Corporation just discontinued or rather modified my system of choice, Intel Quark X1000 x86-based System on a Chip.  Now the Intel Quark just supports the Intel Curie system.  This is a scaled back version of Intel’s original offerings in 2013 that allowed one to run i586 x86 Linux on a 32 bit system with all the fixings.  Intel Galileo, Intel Edison and Intel Joule were all included in this list.  Do I need a Trademark Symbol here?!

That may be a good thing.   One the prototype is done, scaling back to an MPU might work.  MPU stands for MicroProcessing Unit.  The original Quark was truly a CPU: Central Processing Unit.  I learned that the presence of the x87 Mathematical CoProcessor on the Quark CPU is what allows Linux to run: I have no idea why?

Scaling back is not really what I want to do, but hardening the design and using an MPU could be alright.  So I am wondering if I might move on from the Software on a Chip (SoC) that we have seen represented by systems like the Intel Curie, Arduino and ARM and just go back to the old System on a Board: that is, computer board that I used to build.  Back to the future!

Isn’t it funny that all of these new Single Board Computers use System on a Chip processors?  Why not use a little more board?

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