What chip speed should be used for this project?
eZ80 20 MHZ
 6%  [ 1 ]
eZ80 50 MHZ
 26%  [ 4 ]
eZ80 50 MHZ, underclockable to 20 MHZ
 66%  [ 10 ]
Total Votes : 15

Well, what I meant by the OS statement is that the default OS is nice and polished (and as far as I can tell, Knight OS is looking like just that) and then after that someone else can install their own OS, or a modified version of KnightOS if it's made open-source.

My point is, don't aim for both. Aim for the student crowd, and leave techies to write their own OS, or perhaps we do after the official OS is done. No trying to make a mix OS that can do both. That could be ugly.

Hardware-wise, anything can be made simple to use, providing it's got a good OS on it. Average users won't care about the hardware besides fast vs slow and screen size.
KermMartian wrote:
willrandship wrote:
A lot of the simplicity people will need will be in the software. hackers, geeks and techies can be happy that they can write their own OS, while simple students can stick with KnightOS, or perhaps something even simpler, if it is written. I don't see much of an issue with pleasing a wide range of people. People can make the calc what they want it to be.
But that's the thing, if you're aiming for the education market, we need something polished, functional, fast, and stable. If you're aiming for the hacker/geek/techie crowd, you want something simple and tweakable. I feel like aiming for both is going to make both things be done poorly.

willrandship wrote:
I was thinking, what about using non-custom cases? If we can find a case already being manufactured that fits our needs, silkscreen it with our text, logos and such, why bother spending tens of thousands on injection molds?
Indeed, an excellent point. Any ideas?


That isn't exactly true. Like Linux, Macs, and Windows, they're perfectly easy to use, yet if you tinkered around with it, whether with a dev tool or console, it's equally good. (Exception is Windows, of course)

Prebuild molds are a great idea! Any idea where to get them?
And KnightOS will have a console, if the Castle mockup is anything to go by. Very Happy
alberthrocks wrote:
KermMartian wrote:
willrandship wrote:
A lot of the simplicity people will need will be in the software. hackers, geeks and techies can be happy that they can write their own OS, while simple students can stick with KnightOS, or perhaps something even simpler, if it is written. I don't see much of an issue with pleasing a wide range of people. People can make the calc what they want it to be.
But that's the thing, if you're aiming for the education market, we need something polished, functional, fast, and stable. If you're aiming for the hacker/geek/techie crowd, you want something simple and tweakable. I feel like aiming for both is going to make both things be done poorly.
Precisely.

alberthrocks wrote:
willrandship wrote:
I was thinking, what about using non-custom cases? If we can find a case already being manufactured that fits our needs, silkscreen it with our text, logos and such, why bother spending tens of thousands on injection molds?
Indeed, an excellent point. Any ideas?


That isn't exactly true. Like Linux, Macs, and Windows, they're perfectly easy to use, yet if you tinkered around with it, whether with a dev tool or console, it's equally good. (Exception is Windows, of course)

Prebuild molds are a great idea! Any idea where to get them?
No, I think he means use pre-built cases, not even cast our own from molds.
Either would save a ton of money. Prebuilt molds if we make >1000, Prebuilt cases otherwise.

injection molding makes stuff cheap, but you need lots to make it worth factories' time.

Can anyone think of any molds available?

What do you think it should look like?
willrandship wrote:
Either would save a ton of money. Prebuilt molds if we make >1000, Prebuilt cases otherwise.

injection molding makes stuff cheap, but you need lots to make it worth factories' time.

Can anyone think of any molds available?

What do you think it should look like?
I do love moveable pieces, like a slide-out keyboard, but I think that's impractical both in terms of the amount of extra parts necessary, and cost. I think a screen over an array of buttons, like most of the TI, Casio, and HP calcs, is a tried-and-true design.
I meant prebuilt cases. Razz

Anyway, I don't exactly think we would really want any kind of movable pieces. Remember, we're trying to get the students to buy this, and seeing something different won't be too good.

Plus, it could be costly, and also be fragile as well.
We can't really get too ahead of ourselves here! Smile
alberthrocks wrote:
I meant prebuilt cases. Razz

Anyway, I don't exactly think we would really want any kind of movable pieces. Remember, we're trying to get the students to buy this, and seeing something different won't be too good.

Plus, it could be costly, and also be fragile as well.
We can't really get too ahead of ourselves here! Smile
I know, I said that already, that's why I was suggesting a one-piece design, like the current TI, HP, and Casio calculators. Razz Are you sure you read my post carefully? Very Happy
Yeah, yeah, just reiterating my thoughts. Wink

Anyway, we really need to finalize hardware before we even think about design, cases, or software. That poll will close tonight.

BTW, Kerm: could I PM you for something? I need you to check on a little infographic outline for me. Wink (If you're not busy, that is!)
alberthrocks wrote:
Yeah, yeah, just reiterating my thoughts. Wink

Anyway, we really need to finalize hardware before we even think about design, cases, or software. That poll will close tonight.

BTW, Kerm: could I PM you for something? I need you to check on a little infographic outline for me. Wink (If you're not busy, that is!)
Well, it sounds like everyone's pretty set on the eZ80, and that we're not gonna know which speed chip to get until someone tries them out and sees if they're underclockable. Also, feel free to PM me.
KermMartian wrote:
The point is that you want to make something powerful and more specialized that appeals to a higher class of consumer, one that perhaps knows more advanced math, more advanced programming, and is interested in using their calculator for both.


http://antipastohw.blogspot.com/2010/07/introducing-100-open-source-hwsw-r.html
Ultimate Dev'r wrote:
KermMartian wrote:
The point is that you want to make something powerful and more specialized that appeals to a higher class of consumer, one that perhaps knows more advanced math, more advanced programming, and is interested in using their calculator for both.


http://antipastohw.blogspot.com/2010/07/introducing-100-open-source-hwsw-r.html
I noticed that after the Omnimegens were discussing this project, but apparently one of them saw it and thought of this project.
Voting closed! Looks like 50 MHz, underclocked to 20 MHz is the winner! Smile
alberthrocks wrote:
Voting closed! Looks like 50 MHz, underclocked to 20 MHz is the winner! Smile
Might I point out that we still don't know if that's even feasible...?
I thought you said that was possible?

Oh well, guess we'll still have to try out and see. Wink If it doesn't work, we can easy work it out on both forums, and just yank the old chip off and put a new one in if needed.
alberthrocks wrote:
I thought you said that was possible?


You need to work on reading more carefully, this isn't the first time I've had to repeat myself for you: Laughing

KermMartian wrote:
A search for information about clocking yields no information, but from what I know of CPUs, it's very plausible that the 50MHz model would run in 20MHz mode, but not vice-versa. It would probably just make sense to buy a bunch and test 'em out.


alberthrocks wrote:
Oh well, guess we'll still have to try out and see. Wink If it doesn't work, we can easy work it out on both forums, and just yank the old chip off and put a new one in if needed.
Indeed. Of course, there's tons of support circuitry needed to even be able to go as far as testing the speeds, for example memory, power, and an external clock, then some way to get data into the memory, and some way to read output from the ez80.
KermMartian wrote:
alberthrocks wrote:
I thought you said that was possible?


You need to work on reading more carefully, this isn't the first time I've had to repeat myself for you: 0x5

KermMartian wrote:
A search for information about clocking yields no information, but from what I know of CPUs, it's very plausible that the 50MHz model would run in 20MHz mode, but not vice-versa. It would probably just make sense to buy a bunch and test 'em out.


alberthrocks wrote:
Oh well, guess we'll still have to try out and see. Wink If it doesn't work, we can easy work it out on both forums, and just yank the old chip off and put a new one in if needed.
Indeed. Of course, there's tons of support circuitry needed to even be able to go as far as testing the speeds, for example memory, power, and an external clock, then some way to get data into the memory, and some way to read output from the ez80.


Plausible = Possible in my opinion. Razz

But yeah, we'll have to see about the speed and such with the OS. (Or some kind of test "firmware")
Plausible is possible but with a bit more doubt and skepticism thrown into the mix. Either way, what if the 50 MHz eZ80 chip gets tried and is found to be not underclockable? Do we stick with 50MHz for speed and power (which is like a 200MHz z80) and go with the 20MHz eZ80 (like an 80 MHz z80) for battery savings?
KermMartian wrote:
Plausible is possible but with a bit more doubt and skepticism thrown into the mix. Either way, what if the 50 MHz eZ80 chip gets tried and is found to be not underclockable? Do we stick with 50MHz for speed and power (which is like a 200MHz z80) and go with the 20MHz eZ80 (like an 80 MHz z80) for battery savings?


Ahh, in that case we will just do some testing, compare, and make final decisions from that.

I recall you suggesting that we would need to buy some chips, and then test them out. We would do that in this case, except we would only need 2 chips. The chips differ by memory size and such, which will be decided on in a future poll.
alberthrocks wrote:
KermMartian wrote:
Plausible is possible but with a bit more doubt and skepticism thrown into the mix. Either way, what if the 50 MHz eZ80 chip gets tried and is found to be not underclockable? Do we stick with 50MHz for speed and power (which is like a 200MHz z80) and go with the 20MHz eZ80 (like an 80 MHz z80) for battery savings?


Ahh, in that case we will just do some testing, compare, and make final decisions from that.

I recall you suggesting that we would need to buy some chips, and then test them out. We would do that in this case, except we would only need 2 chips. The chips differ by memory size and such, which will be decided on in a future poll.
Definitely, but again we'd need a full testbed to discover anything useful, ie, memory, display, and some trivial bootloader.
  
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