FOSDEM 2017 is approaching, are you ready for soldering workshops and playing with TERES-I DIY Hacker’s friendly OSHW laptop?

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FOSDEM is the biggest event in Europe about Open Source technologies.

Every year thousands of FOSS/OSHW enthusiasts and professionals meet in Brussels in ULB (Universite Libre de Bruxelles) in 41 Dev Rooms and talk about interesting problems they have faced during the year.

We just got e-mail that Olimex is approved for booth there!

So prepare for soldering workshop fun with the OSHW-GHOST and FOSDEM-85!

TERES-I Do It Yourself Hacker’s friendly modular Laptop designed completely with KiCAD will be also present at the booth.

KiCAD developers are in EDA room and as far I heard there will be very interesting tutorials and how-to’s examples how to implement simple new commands and extensions to KiCAD for people who want to contribute code.

So plan in advance your flight to Brussels, we looking forward to see you there 4th and 5th of February 2017!

FOSDEM 2016 was last weekend with lot of interesting meetings and talks!

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FOSDEM 2016 was last weekend in Bruxelles! Biggest event in EU this year had a bit less visitors, probably feared by the terrorist news which all TVs are exposing us.

Belgians seems to take this threat seriously as we have seen lot of peoples with automatic guns in military uniforms walking around the city center, but fortunately at FOSDEM we didn’t saw any, neither someone has stop us to check or whatsoever while we have been waling in the city.

Some 8000 different MACs were logged on WiFi infrastructure, so I guess at least 5000 visitors were there.

The picture above shows my captures from the event, buying t-shirt was my way to say thanks to these projects which we use daily both at home and office!

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You know you have been at FOSDEM Friday beer party when you wake up next morning and you see (hopefully not permanent) “IloveFS” tattoo on your arm. Here is how the Delirium beer hub was looking like at Friday:

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I had lecture about our experience designing A64 board with KiCAD, Riku Voipio took picture of the tail to enter the room and posted on G+

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The slides are posted at Slideshare. TL-DR; KiCAD now is solid enough to build complex designs, what we need is little bit of twist to make it even more easy to use and few minor bugs are to be wiped, but overal there is significant progress for one year!

To my surprise KiCAD team emailed me next day and we had a quick meeting with notes they took on all issues I mention on the talk! It’s nice to see such commitement to make the product better!

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Another interesting talk in same EDA room was from Clifford who reverse engineered the iCE40 bitstream and made completely FOSS FPGA toolset, which can be used to generate iCE40 based FPGA projects.

I had eye on iCE40 since Antti Lukats posted on Hackaday about his project, but we were quite busy with many other things to may play with it, now we start working on our own ICE40HX1K development board with UEXT for programming by OLinuXino and different extension connectors. The idea is to make entry level board for people who want to make their first steps in FPGA, running Clifford’s toolchain on OLinuXino with this FPGA board connected to it and with different front-end modules like high speed ADCs to make DSO or programmable level shifter 1.2-5.5V which to allow logic analyzer working on different voltage levels, LEDs, buzzers, counters, buttons with tons of examples. I already shoot Clifford e-mail about our plans and looking forward to hear his suggestions as he already have lot of experience with these FPGAs.

Clifford’s work sparkled such interest for iCE40 that now the Lattice demo boards are with 21 weeks delivery time, plenty of time for us to release our own board :))))

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Another interesting lecture was about the Rad1o badge for CCC. It was fun to learn for all the difficulties which the development team had to make these happen (including mistakes in the documentation which made them to drill back side of BGA PCB to disconnect solder ball) – they said they would never go through the manufacturing hell again as this production caused them gray hairs although the interest about this badge continues.

Being busy all day long with both design and manufacturing, once I made analogy about the path to design board and then to run this board in production -> it’s like the process to make kid and then to rise it, teach it, make it human being. First job (design) brings just fun, joy and satisfaction, the second is not less interesting but dealing with all manufacturing bugs and troubleshooting the processes is kinda routeen and sometimes even boring :))) but neverthless must be done! Sure we enjoy more designing than manufacturing, but can’t run sustainable business without latter.

FOSDEM 2016 is approaching and the schedule is now published – Free and Open Source Software and Hardware event

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FOSDEM the biggest and coolest Open Source event in Europe is at the last weekend in January.

If you don’t know what FOSDEM is or you never have been there you missed a lot of beer and fun 🙂

Thousands of people who love Libre Free Open Source technology come together once per year in Bruxelles and share what they did during the pass year.

The schedule is already complete and you can check at https://fosdem.org/2016/schedule/tracks/

We have small talk about A64-OLinuXino in EDA room to share our experience with KiCAD during the PCB development.

We wanted to make free SMT soldering workshop like we did back in 2013 on FOSDEM, but the workshop was declined.

I do remember there were lot of hesitation for the workshop in 2013 as the Libre University of Bruxelles where FOSDEM take place didn’t want to allow soldering to be made in the University without some special permissions due to risk of fire etc.

So guys if you want to participate in our next free soldering workshop you have to come to TuxCon or OpenFest in Bulgaria 🙂

FOSDEM 2015 – Upstream Allwinner ARM SoC (A10 / sunxi) support status lecture from Hans de Goede

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FOSDEM 2015 videos are now online. For these who missed Hans de Goede lecture about Linux-Sunxi community efforts for upstream Allwinner ARM SoC support now you can watch the video here.

Hans works for Red Hat and is one of the very active Linux-Sunxi developers.

The slides are here.

FOSDEM 2015 is approaching

FOSDEM

FOSDEM is the biggest European event for Free and Open Source Software. It’s a must see event for every open source software enthusiast.

This year it’s on 31/01-01/02 weekend, but it’s start traditionally with beer event at Delirium cafe Friday evening.

We have been three years there and it seems that every year the number of people almost doubles, like 3000-5000-8000 pcs. You can’t notice this inside the Libre University of Bruxelles, as there is plenty of space and rooms and the organizers do great job to make sure there is food and space for all participants, but you can definitely feel the crowd when the event is closing and thousands of people go out and wait on the bus stations to go back to their hotel 🙂

There are hundreds of lectures, workshops, events which you can participate there, meeting people all around the world who share same ideas. It’s different than Linux Con for instance, where there is high entry fee and it’s more corporate event. FOSDEM is free to participate which attracts much more people and you should definitely come and see the atmosphere of freedom there.

In 2014 we had two tables there making soldering workshop, we apply this year too, but no reply neither positive neither negative so far, so I don’t know if we will do the same this year, too much work for the organizers maybe so they can’t reply to everyone?

FOSDEM 2014 – one great event for all who like Free/Open Source Technologies

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This year it was our second visit to FOSDEM and I think this year there were even more people than last year.
At least on FOSDEM 2013 Friday beer event at Delirium cafe we managed somehow to get to the bar and drink a beer, this year there was no way, Delirium was so loaded that we couldn’t get near on the streets in Friday evening. So we went to a pub near (fortunately there are plenty of bars in this area).

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Some people say FOSDEM 2014 had 6000 other say 8000 visitors, the WIFI statistics say that about 3000 people were connected at same time in the peak hours, great job done by the organizers as the internet was good, and there were plenty of spots where you can get quickly something to drink and eat!
You can feel the crowd mostly when you decide to leave at the evening and can’t get on few buses full of people, but at least you are surrounded by good company and can chat meantime while next bus arrives.

FOSDEM is primary Free Open Software event. As we already blogged we made this cute Arduino Tiny85 kit for FOSDEM Hackathon:

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It was cool to see how many people were attracted to try their first board soldering. We were surprised as in the first day out of about 100 kits soldered just one didn’t work, on the second day there were few more, but still less than 1% of all soldered kits were damaged, great achievment for beginners 🙂

For us the best reward was to see the big smiles on the people who see their boards working 🙂

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The Hackathon was noticed and featured in the popular German c’t Hardware Hacks Magazine

Olimex also got approved this year for 15 minutes Lighting Talk about OSHW and OLinuXino

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For these who missed this event, my slides are at SlideShare  and here you can see my video and hear my funny accent 🙂

Overall the feeling from FOSDEM is that FOSS people still don’t know what Open Source Harware is and how it slowly changes the world we know like FOSS software does.

People keep confusing and think that once some project have PDF schematics this make it open source hardware 🙂 you can hear this on Leon’s lecture for Tizen or Oliver lecture for Allwinner SOCs.

Also what we saw is that the people willing to solder were more than our one table with 4 soldering irons could handle 🙂

We apologize to all who didn’t manage to get seat, for next event we may prepare more soldering seats so more people to give it a try.
What we saw for sure is that among FOSDEM visitors there are lot of people who love to learn new stuff and to build thing by themself!

 

EDIT: we got from G+ picture of another 8 years old Hacker who built FOSDEM-85: http://flic.kr/p/jSUGrY

 

The Custom Boards for FOSDEM 2014 Hackathon are ready

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Have look at FOSDEM-85 the custom board we made specially for FOSDEM 2014 Hackathon.

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This is derivate from the well known OLIMEXINO-85-KIT which we used for OpenFest Hackathon.

For FOSDEM we made it in nice shape of Pinguino with OSHW logo and two LEDs as eyes 🙂

This board is fully functional ATTiny85 Arduino compatible and uses Digispark’s Arduino IDE and Micronucleus bootloader.

With it you can control addressable LED stripes, drive servos and stepper motors, measure temperature etc etc.

On OpenFest we had 100 kits which were all soldered for one day, this time we prepare 200 kits to give away at FOSDEM Hackathon.

We are in AW building:

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Table 2 and 3 are ours and there we will place 4 soldering stations where people who want to try soldering their very first Open Source Arduino clone and then run program on it.

People who have no soldering irons with them will have to wait seat to be free to sit and soldering, alternatively if someone carry soldering iron with him can use it without waiting for seat 🙂

FOSDEM-85 board is so cute that we decided to carry it in our web shop as well, so these who have no chance to build one at FOSDEM will be able to buy online and solder at home.

EDIT: The board is now in our online shop.

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