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22 October 2012, 21:14

Hardware Hacks: Gertboard, Arduino Due and the R10 Quadcopter

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Zoom The Gertboard next to the Rasperry Pi
Source: Raspberry Pi Foundation
Hardware Hacks is the section on The H that collects stories about the wide range of uses of open source in the rapidly expanding area of open hardware. Find out about interesting projects, re-purposing of devices and the creation of a new generation of deeply open systems. In this edition, the Gertboard starts shipping, the open source-powered R10 quadcopter reaches its funding goal, the Arduino Due ARM-based board is now available for purchase, and using a Rasperry Pi as a Tor relay.

  • Gertboard ships – First announced in early August, the Gerboard has started shipping to customers who pre-ordered the breakout board for the Raspberry Pi mini-computer. Named after Gert van Loo who designed the original Raspberry Pi prototype, the £30 add-on board has an Arduino microcontroller and extends the Raspberry Pi by adding three push buttons, several LEDs and a variety of I/O ports.

  • Tor Pi relay – Bought a Raspberry Pi and haven't put it to use yet? One Instructables user has created a guide to turning a standard Raspberry Pi into a relay for the Tor online anonymity network. For those without a Raspberry Pi, instructions for configuring a Tor relay using a spare computer are available on the Tor Project's site.

  • Arduino Due now available – The long-awaited Arduino Due microcontroller prototyping board is now available to purchase. Priced at €39 excluding VAT, the board is the first ARM-based device from the company behind the open sourced Arduino hardware platform. It has an 84Mhz 32-bit ATMEL SAM3U Cortex-M3 ARM processor, 512KB of flash memory for user applications, 54 digital input/output pins, 12 analog inputs, 2 analog output pins, and 4 UARTs (hardware serial ports).

Zoom The R10 Quadrotor MAV is powered by open source software
Source: UAir

  • Quadcopter – The R10 quadrocopter has reached its $15,000 funding goal on Kickstarter. Designed by UAir, the R10 is a quadrotor micro air vehicle (MAV) weighs just 700g including the standard battery and carry a maximum payload of up to 2,000g. The software used to control the MAV is made being made available as open source, allowing users to access the entire system and further customise it, or fork it for use in their own devices. A video of the R10 being built is available on YouTube. So far, more than $62,000 has been pledged to the project, which will close on 14 November.


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