Linux - Embedded & Single-board computerThis forum is for the discussion of Linux on both embedded devices and single-board computers (such as the Raspberry Pi, BeagleBoard and PandaBoard). Discussions involving Arduino, plug computers and other micro-controller like devices are also welcome.
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I've been using ubuntu on my desktop for a while and I'm interested in trying some stuff on an embedded board. I want to have usb, wifi, bluetooth, some DIOs, possibly GPS, and an onboard DSP. Mostly just to try things out and experiment for now.
Can anyone suggest a board or even where to start looking?
What stuff are you planning to try? If it is just an adventure in programming, use any old desktop host. The embedded aspect of software development is really just more of a hassle than anything interesting. Often special equipment is required to load your code on the target host, such as EPROM/FPGA burners, JTAG dongles, etc. and these can be expensive. Any hardware you buy (you mentioned DSP) that interfaces with a desktop motherboard will be a lot cheaper than something for the embedded world.
Mostly just to try things out and experiment for now.
As has already been mentioned, you'll have to narrow things down a bit; embedded covers quite a lot of ground. Something like a smart mobile phone, which is obviously a small computer is embedded, as is an air con controller or a washing machine controller, neither of which are obviously computers as far as the end user is concerned.
The development boards that you would use for the two are almost completely different, so without further info, it is difficult to be helpful.
Other examples would be the controller board for a laser printer or some kind of networking appliance, and those two would have rather different requirements from the previous applications.
If it is just an adventure in programming, use any old desktop host...Any hardware you buy (you mentioned DSP) that interfaces with a desktop motherboard will be a lot cheaper than something for the embedded world.
Depending on what you are trying to do, maybe one of the lower power x86-type systems (Atom, VIA, etc) is what you want. Still, the bang per buck rating is lower than a desktop, particularly old desktop hardware. The power requirements would be lower, but without knowing whether battery operation is a requirement for what you want to do...
In general, without requirements, any ideas are just guesses, and we don't even know the field, never mind the exact requirements.
Check the OK6410 from http://www.arm9board.net, interesting and quit capable: 533MHz ARM11 MCU, 128MB ram, 1GB ROM, SD expandable, SDIO, USB, WIFI, GPS, GPRS, camera, bluetooth, E Linux, WinCE, Android.... The most attractive thing: it's inexpensive! $139 for the board and a 4.3" LCD! I just got one a few weeks ago, it can be perfect for you according to what you required so far.