bunnie launches NeTV2, open source video dev board, on CrowdSupply




May in Portland: Teardown: new hardware conference by CrowdSupply

[…] You can think of Teardown as live-action Crowd Supply, but with fewer cardboard boxes and packing peanuts. We’ll be bringing together hardware aficionados from around the world to celebrate, inspect, create, and, of course, tear down hardware. There will be long-time Crowd Supply creators and backers, as well as people we’re meeting for the first time. There will be hardware, art, food, drink, puzzles, workshops, tutorials, talks, music, field trips, and friends. Most of all, there will be ideas and projects to explore and inspire.[…]



FSF: back the Raptor Talos Secure Workstation

A message from Donald Robertson of the Free Software Foundation, quoted verbatim:

Support the Talos Secure Workstation by January 14th Raptor Computing Systems is crowdfunding on Crowd Supply to produce, from the ground up, a high-powered computer with no proprietary software or firmware blobs called the Talos Secure Workstation. The project’s decision to raise funds via [Crowd Supply][0] means that you can support their work with anonymous payments, and without the use of [proprietary JavaScript][1]. We wrote about this project previously, and encouraged people to [voice their support][2]. While there are several companies that offer refurbished computers that have been freed to [Respect Your Freedom][3], the Talos Secure Workstation will be built from its inception with freedom in mind. But in order for that to happen, the project needs your help to meet their fund raising goal. The project has set a crowdfunding goal of $3.7 million and still has a ways to go to reach that mark. It may seem like they are asking for a lot of money, but relative to the scope of what the folks at Raptor Computing are trying to accomplish, it is a small amount. As Raptor Computing Systems Senior Electrical Engineer Timothy Pearson explained:

‘Large, complex systems such as Talos require minimum order quantities to be met for the component parts in use, in addition to R&D expenditure for prototyping, validation, and conformance testing. We have set the goal at the minimum level required to ensure that we can not only design the Talos systems, but also purchase the parts needed to manufacture these complex machines.’

They need every dollar they can get to make this system a reality. It is a difficult goal, but also one that is critical for the future of free computing. As they note in their explanation[4] of the problem:

‘As of this writing, all currently manufactured, low- to mid-range and higher x86 devices, with the exception of two obsolete AMD CPUs, incorporate a security processor that is cryptographically signed, updateable, unauditable, and for which no source code or documentation has been made public. Worse, these security processors must load and continually execute this signed firmware for the system to either be brought online (AMD) or for it to remain operational (Intel).’

If we want a future in which we can continue to have fully free systems that run only free software, we have to build that future ourselves. The Talos Secure Workstation is a proposed system to help secure that future. Their plans are to create a device that will meet the criteria for [Respects Your Freedom][3] certification, but in order for their plans to come to fruition, they need your help. You can support their work by backing the project via their [crowdfunding page][0], or even better, by purchasing a mainboard andaccessory package. Every little bit counts. Will you help support the future of free computing?

[0]: https://www.crowdsupply.com/raptor-computing-systems/talos-secure-workstation
[1]: https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/javascript-trap.en.html
[2]: https://www.fsf.org/blogs/licensing/interested-in-a-powerful-free-software-friendly-workstation
[3]: https://www.fsf.org/resources/hw/endorsement/respects-your-freedom
[4]: https://www.crowdsupply.com/raptor-computing-systems/talos-secure-workstation/updates/a-word-on-lockdown



Another RISC-V project

The other week I pointed out a RISC-V project on CrowdSupply:


There’s another one, as Jeremy Bennett Embecosm announced on the Open Source Hardware User Group list:

Another RISC-V project

Hot on the heels OnChip and Open-V of comes


I note they have already met their target on the first day (it wasn’t a very hard target).

More info:




FSF asks you to support the Libre Tea Computer Card

The Free Software Foundation is supporting the Libre Tea Computer Card’s crowdfunding effort.

“The Earth-friendly EOMA68 Computing Devices project is a crowdfunding campaign run on Crowd Supply to produce a line of hardware products that are ecologically responsible and built based on royalty-free, unencumbered hardware standards. […] After working closely with the developers and reviewing a sample test board, we are confident that their plans are to create a device that can achieve our Respects Your Freedom (RYF) certification. […]  The project is being developed by Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton of Rhombus-Tech and is sponsored by Christopher Waid of ThinkPenguin, a company that sells [multiple RYF-certified hardware products. […]  The Libre Tea Computer Card is built with an Allwinner A20 dual core processor configured to use the main CPU for graphics; it has 2 GB of RAM and 8 GB of NAND Flash; […]



Bunnie’s new book: The Essential Guide to Electronics in Shenzhen

Bunnie has a new book out, available via Crowdsupply, called “The Essential Guide to Electronics in Shenzhen“:

A sourcing tool designed to help non-Mandarin speakers navigate the Hua Qiang electronics market. Going to Shenzhen, China is a massive enabler for Makers, hackers, and entrepreneurs alike. The Essential Guide to Electronics in Shenzhen is the book I wish I had when I first stepped foot into China a decade ago. I started visiting the Shenzhen electronic markets about 10 years ago. There, I learned about supply chains and how to mass-produce hardware. Over the years, I’ve blogged about my experiences in Shenzhen: ‘MLTalk with Joi Ito, Nadya Peek and Me’ and ‘Products over Patents’, and given tours of the markets to parties ranging from graduate students at the MIT Media Lab, to VCs and executives. I’ve spent a lot of time on the ground in Shenzhen figuring out how to build my (often quirky) pet projects, ranging from my own version of a Shanzhai phone to a bespoke ARM-based laptop, to interactive conference badges that encourage participants to breed unique light patterns through virtual sexual reproduction. With your help, we can add to that list a book that will help readers transform their own dreams into products. ” […]

Help Make “The Essential Guide to Electronics in Shenzhen” a Reality