It’s time to starting making some of these bits (pardon the pun) solid, both so I can work on new interesting abilities for Veronica, and so I can have some damn breadboards back.
I spent a lot of time thinking about this, and planning out various strategies. I’ve settled on what’s called a Backplane Design. Essentially, every component of the machine is treated as a module that is plugged into a large master bus. Wikipedia has a nice treatment of this topic. Ideally, everything is completely general, so you could have multiple CPUs, multiple memory systems, or any other weird combination of components. In reality, that’s a lofty goal, and mine won’t be so fancy. This is in contrast to a motherboard design, where most major systems are on one large board, and you have a couple of connectors or slots for expansion in specific ways.
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, or even use Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for MakeCode, CircuitPython, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Biohacking — Neuralink – A Closer Look at the Tech
Python for Microcontrollers — CircuitPython takes flight! All aboard with datum, Bluefruit CPX, and more! #Python #Adafruit #CircuitPython #PythonHardware @circuitpython @micropython @ThePSF @Adafruit
Get the only spam-free daily newsletter about wearables, running a "maker business", electronic tips and more! Subscribe at AdafruitDaily.com !
Brings back memories of the S-100 bus backplane on the IMSAI-8080A that I built in 1975. Dang – I’m getting old 🙁
Ahh yes S-100 bus, etc. I built several as a tech in an early computer store (circa 1977). Then there was my own Processor Tech SOL computer – now hiding in a closet at CrashSpace (LA, CA makerspace).
Shield stacks are sorta like the backplane. I wonder what it would take to get a real backplane design working for Arduino (and other microcontrollers)? Bus Driver chips, contention for multi-masters? Support for different processors (Amtel, PIC, Propeller, …) It (design process) could get contentious itself. Would it be better than shields?
There were/are a few commercial backplane designs out there for embedded systems. Might be a place to start.