Saturday, October 08, 2011
The Beagle Has Landed!
The Beagleboard is an open-source hardware project developed around an ARM Cortex A8 processor (TI OMAP3 family). See Beagleboard.org for the general scoop. The Beagleboard-XM shown above sports the DM3730 1 GHz processor with 800 MHz DSP, 512 MB RAM, 4 GB micro SD "disk", 4 USB ports, 10/100 Ethernet, HDMI video, audio in and out. Oh, and an old-fashioned serial port. It is about 3" square and draws 2.5 W on a 5 V power supply.
That's all the hardware you need to run a slew of interesting applications. First, there is Angstrom Linux, which is a distribution tailored for embedded systems. There is also a version of Ubuntu being developed. And you can run other ARM environments, too. Android, anyone? Forth?
I'm interested in some ham applications along the lines of remote control, such as remote receiver systems for HF. The hardware is wonderful, but it's clear that 99% of such a project is software.
Google reveals a number of ham applications already out there: