Coming soon: A new, open laptop from the creator of Chumby

This hand-crafted Linux device will feature 'uniquely open source components,' its maker says.

By Katherine Noyes, PC World |  Hardware, Linux, open source hardware

Open source software has become an increasingly widespread part of the computing world thanks to the ever-growing popularity of Linux, Firefox, LibreOffice, and other prominent examples. Fully open hardware, however, is still much less common.

Just a few weeks ago we saw the emergence of the Raspberry Pi-style A13-OLinuXino, but over the weekend another interesting contender came to light: a new, open laptop from the creator of the Chumby Internet device.

"We are building an open laptop, with some wacky features in it for hackers like me," wrote renowned Xbox hacker and Chumby creator Andrew "Bunnie" Huang in a blog post on Sunday.

"The hardware and its sub-components are picked so as to make this the most practically open hardware laptop I could create using state of the art technology," Huang added. "You can download, without NDA, the datasheets for all the components, and key peripheral options are available so it's possible to build a complete firmware from source with no opaque blobs."

Huang may launch a Kickstarter campaign to offer the resulting ARM-based device up to the public, he said. In the meantime, here's a rundown of how it's shaping up.

Raspberry Pi compatibility

Currently code-named "Novena," the new DIY device uses a Freescale i.MX6 ARM Cortex-A9 quad-core processor running at 1.2 GHz and a Vivante GC2000 OpenGL ES2.0 GPU.

A mini PCI-express slot, a resistive touchscreen controller, a three-axis accelerometer, 100 Mbit Ethernet, and a Raspberry Pi-compatible expansion header are also among the laptop's many intriguing features.


Originally published on PC World |  Click here to read the original story.
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