Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

The official pyboard running MicroPython.
This is the reference design and main target board for MicroPython.
You can buy one at the store.
Target audience: Users with a pyboard.
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roland_vs
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by roland_vs » Thu May 05, 2016 12:18 pm

Dear all,

The beauty of mpy is that it is bare metal. It would therefore be nice to explore this in four directions:

1) a real low power version, able to use a harvester, minimum software, hardware, charger, etc.
2) a version running on a fpga platform e.g. Zynq...and use python to generate some vhdl...
3) a dsp version
4) a multiprocessor version (how about stacking a few pyb boards :-)

1 and 2 would be great. 3 and 4 can be created from 2...

Regards, Roland

zeevro
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by zeevro » Mon May 30, 2016 1:46 am

I'd like to join in on the really cheap board suggestion. A low-end MCU with a micro SD slot and some 8-12 pins.

ZebIrion
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by ZebIrion » Mon May 30, 2016 7:21 am

Hello Everyone..i am new to this forum and recently started working on MicroPython board. If I was going to create a new board, I think that having a board with a focus of low power would be good (perhaps using one of the new STM32L4 MCUs).There already quite a few boards with SMT32F4xx MCUs available. So if you were going to create a new board, I think you'd want to avoid just duplicating functionality available on another board.
Last edited by ZebIrion on Tue Jun 28, 2016 7:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.

NielsClausen
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by NielsClausen » Fri Jun 10, 2016 2:48 pm

What about having a cellular modem on-board? LTE CAT-0 would be a really first-mover thing to do! If you talk to Gemalto (they seem pretty forward on this, using Sequans chipset). Also Altair is making chipsets for CAT-0, but I don't know of anyone making modems with it yet!? Maybe a partnership that they could also use to showcase their IOT capabilities? Quite a hot subject these days...

I know this is quite wild, but it would REALLY set the pyboard apart from the crowd! Future is cellular, not wifi (which is "one-size-fits-one"), in my opinion (se how 3ggp works towards 5G). http://www.3gpp.org/news-events/3gpp-ne ... iseharbour

This is a long-term investment, not something addressing what most current users demand. But maybe this is what they want (especilly in 2-4 years), they just don't know it yet? Like I felt when I met the pyboard the first time.

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kamikaze
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by kamikaze » Tue Aug 16, 2016 10:14 am

Please add headers onto the board. And it would be nice to have a powerful/faster cpu too. For me it is ok if it will be even larger than now.

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kamikaze
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by kamikaze » Sun Sep 04, 2016 8:37 pm

so is there any thoughts as a result? any plans? :)

SpotlightKid
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by SpotlightKid » Sun Sep 04, 2016 8:51 pm

kamikaze wrote:Please add headers onto the board. And it would be nice to have a powerful/faster cpu too. For me it is ok if it will be even larger than now.
I was kind of disappointed that there weren't any headers included with the pyboard. I think, for the price it's selling at, that could be expected. I'm happy, though, that it doesn't come with headers pre-soldered. I think the form factor is nice, neither too big nor too small. There aren't many STM32F4x boards readily available at such a small size.

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kamikaze
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by kamikaze » Mon Sep 05, 2016 12:46 pm

SpotlightKid wrote:
kamikaze wrote:Please add headers onto the board. And it would be nice to have a powerful/faster cpu too. For me it is ok if it will be even larger than now.
I was kind of disappointed that there weren't any headers included with the pyboard. I think, for the price it's selling at, that could be expected. I'm happy, though, that it doesn't come with headers pre-soldered. I think the form factor is nice, neither too big nor too small. There aren't many STM32F4x boards readily available at such a small size.
Ok, headers are not a must for me since now. It appears that I can do such soldering by myself. Just bought soldering station for a triple price of PyBoard :lol:

cliechti
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by cliechti » Mon Sep 05, 2016 9:37 pm

The current pyBoard has a nice form factor and stands out against other boards, the X/Y position for shields is smart. That's probably worth to keep. I also like to have a micro-USB connector as its very easy to get started (with the serial port / mass storage or just to provide power). Also useful is micro SD slot as it makes it easy for "data logging" applications.

Creating a new board for a good price is probably very difficult. If it has no special features (except from funding micropython), it may be difficult to sell them (against the cheap NUCLEO boards etc). On the other hand an expensive board with lots of features may not find many buyers..

Maybe you could also sell a case with battery holder, picking up a pyBoard and LCD shield, with some extra space for hardware. Variations may include a DC/DC for the battery or a LoPo charger.

Connectivity is a topic. Maybe a better bluetooth module, you have one in the shop but its not so interesting with the form factor. it should be in skin-shape to just plug it in. Maybe even a ESP8266 (or later, the new ESP chip) on a skin would make sense (add the LCD skin and the case mentioned above and you have a handheld device connected to the world).

- a pyBoard with pre-soldered sockets, so to set a definitve standard for the skins
- more skins. e.g. DC motor / H-Bridge driver? Relais? IR tansmiter/receiver
- merchandise!!! like a coffee cup with logo, stickers, pens, plush-snake

cliechti
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Re: Ideas for next evolution of pyboard

Post by cliechti » Mon Sep 05, 2016 10:00 pm

or maybe you could provide something along the micro:bit.

- re-selling the original (for the rest of the world...)
- a compatible board (though if you add more resources/better MCU, it won't be compatible to the existing online editor etc :/
- though a more powerful but pin-compatible board (even if not completely compatible to the online editor) might find its buyers?
- an adapter for regular pyBoard skins?
- pyBoard hardware in a micro:bit shape (if there is an ecosystem for micro:bit boards, is there one?)

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