Category: Robots

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$50 eduMIP with 96Boards, BeagleBone, Raspberry Pi, with Thomas Bewley (UCSD Professor)

Posted by Charbax – September 20, 2018

UC San Diego Professor Thomas Bewley discusses his Segway-like educational robotics kit, eduMIP, based on the BeagleBone Blue at Linaro Connect Vancouver 2018. This inexpensive kit (available online, for $128, at Renaissance Robotics https://www.renaissancerobotics.com/eduMIP.html) is used in his Embedded Control & Robotics course at UCSD, which Prof Bewley is currently working on taking online as a MOOC. It is also beginning to be used by a community of researchers and educators at other universities around the world. In this video, Prof Bewley also introduces his early efforts in developing new (and, significantly higher-power) motor-control daughterboards in the 96boards and Raspberry Pi formats. He also discusses eduMIP v.2 and some other advanced prototypes in his lab, as well as the Robot Control (RC) software library that drives this hardware, and will ultimately enable easy porting of control codes across the BeagleBone, Raspberry Pi, and 96boards linux-based product lines, in addition to deployment onto very-low-cost custom targets based on Cortex M based processors running an RTOS. His ultimate goal with this ambitious effort is to facilitate a much more seamless pathway from lab prototype to commercial product.

Nvidia Press Conference at Computex 2018

Posted by Charbax – June 6, 2018

Jensen Huang, Founder and CEO of Nvidia, Announces Jetson Xavier which I have filmed a separate interview about here, he does not launch the rumored GTX2080 or GTX1180 next-gen graphics cards yet, provides update on Max-Q thinner full GPU gaming laptops, talks DGX-2 supercomputer "The World's Largest GPU" (an update on the DGX which I filmed here) with 2 petaflops of performance in one node, 512GB frame buffer which has set 5 world records: fastest single chip, fastest single node, fastest at scale, fastest inference, and highest inference throughput.

Libre Computer Development Boards S905X, RK3328, H2+/H3/H5 form-factor compatible with Raspberry Pi

Posted by Charbax – June 5, 2018

Libre Computer introduces three products of their CC-series which are form-factor compatible with the Raspberry Pi boards and based on open-market hardware. Depending on the model, these single-board computers (SBCs) offer higher performance, more RAM, and/or more IO while sharing the existing aftermarket parts ecosystem. All three products were featured on crowdfunding and supported by free and open source software (FOSS) like Linux and u-boot.

AML-S905X-CC, nicknamed Le Potato, is based on the popular Amlogic S905X SoC. It offers up to 2GB of RAM, four 64-bit cores, 4K60 video playback with HDR, and built-in infrared receiver. This board is the most power-efficient platform of the three and uses less than one watt at idle. There is a large suite of available software for the S905X SoC and it is the only one that has previously passed certification for Google’s Android TV platform. Currently, video decode is missing from upstream Linux and is only available from Amlogic’s BSP with Linux 4.9. Android up to 8 Oreo is available with design contract.

ROC-RK3328-CC, nicknamed Renegade, is based on the Rockchip RK3328 SoC. It offers up to 4GB of high-speed DDR4, four 64-bit cores, 4K60 video playback with HDR, USB 3.0, Gigabit Ethernet. Perfect for IO intensive application like home media center, NAS, microservice virtualization, and more. HDMI support in upstream Linux is scheduled to be completed in Q4 2018. Ubuntu and Debian with accelerated video and 3D is available based on Rockchip’s BSP with Linux 4.4. Android up to 8 Oreo is schedule to be available in Q3 2018 with design contract.

ALL-H3-CC, nicknamed Tritium, is based on three separate Allwinner SoCs: H2+, H3, and H5. The H2+ variant offers 512MB of RAM, four 32-bit cores, and 1080P video playback. The H3 variant is the H2+ variant with 1GB of RAM and 4K30 video playback. The H5 variant offers 2GB of RAM, four 64-bit cores, and 4K30 video playback. There is a large software community behind Allwinner SoCs called linux-sunxi and they have been upstreaming Linux hardware support for almost a decade. This platform also has a crowdfunded effort for video decode Linux upstream underway by Bootlin. Android up to 7 Nougat is available.

Full Comparison of Board Features

Libre Computer platforms are radio-less, FCC and CE certified, long-term-supported (LTS 5Y+) single-board computers. Libre Computer offers hardware customization on all supported SoC platforms. Standard boards with components added/removed can be ordered with 1K MOQ. Small effort customization/mezzanine design contract can be requested with 5K MOQ. Full custom design contracts are available for orders with 20K MOQ. Industrial design, software, project management resources are available as part of design contract.

$1299 Nvidia Jetson Xavier dev kit, 8-core ARMv8, 512-core Volta GPU for AI Robotics

Posted by Charbax – June 4, 2018

Nvidia launes Jetson Xavier with 20x the performance of Jetson TX2 and 10x the energy efficiency with 512-core Volta GPU with Tensor Cores in an embedded module with more than 9 billion transistors it runs at under 30W, with multiple operating modes at 10W, 15W, and 30W. The Jetson Xavier ARM SoC has 6 kinds of high-performance processors on its SoC, a Volta Tensor Core GPU, an eight-core ARM64 CPU, dual NVDLA deep learning accelerators, an image processor, a vision processor and a video processor. Jetson Xavier has a peak performance of up to 30 TOPS (trillion operations per second) of mixed-precision FP32/FP16/INT8 performance. It can encode dual 4K60 H265 and decode dual 4K60 H265 at up to 12bit. Comes with 16GB LPDDR4x RAM with 137GB/s memory bandwidth, 32GB eMMC storage. It also has a dual NVDLA DL/ML Accelerator Engines which are open source available at http://nvdla.org and a 7-way VLIW Vision Accelerator. Nvidia Jetson Xavier runs using the Nvidia Isaac platform, a toolbox for the simulation, training, verification and deployment of Jetson Xavier. This robotics software consists of: Isaac SDK, APIs and tools to develop robotics algorithm software and runtime framework with fully accelerated libraries, Isaac IMX (Intelligent Machine Acceleration) applications, a collection of NVIDIA-developed robotics algorithm software, Isaac Sim, a highly realistic virtual simulation environment for developers to train autonomous machines and perform hardware-in-the-loop testing with Jetson Xavier. The Nvidia Jetson Xavier developer kit, which includes the Isaac robotics software, will be priced at $1,299, with early access starting in August from distributors worldwide.

BOE Flexible Phone, 8K, 5644PPI micro-display (17x Retina), Printed OLED, QLED and more

Posted by Charbax – June 2, 2018

BOE presents their latest flexible AMOLED display solutions for the future of smartphones that can be bent, folded, and rolled and even flap in the wind. BOE's flexible displays is demonstrated for robots with touch control, smart loudspeakers, an S-shaped in-car flexible AMOLED display. 8K displays, micro displays, QLED displays and other IoT solutions such as their TFT based AMOLED fingerprint recognition system that works in any spot of the display area

The foldable all-screen WQHD AMOLED display launched by BOE can achieve minimum dynamic bending with a radius of only 1mm. It can be bent more than 100,000 times and has an NTSC color gamut up to 118%. BOE is exhibiting a 5.99" FHD+ 2160x1080 Flexible AMOLED foldable mobile phone and a 7.56" foldable tablet. The display can be used for mobile phones when it is folded up and for tablets or monitors when it unfolds.

As one of the upcoming possibly revolutionizing OLED technical directions, BOE demonstrates their OLED printing technology to possibly just print the future of Smartphone displays showing their 5.5" FHD (1920×1080) printing flexible OLED display.

UHD has become a keyword of SID 2018 for material and equipment suppliers and device manufacturers, signaling the advent of the 8K era. In addition to the 110-inch 8K, 75-inch 8K, and 65-inch 8K glasses-free 3D displays, BOE also presents 13.3-inch 8K display products, promoting the development of small and medium-sized 8K products.

BOE has gathered speed in building an 8K ecosystem ever since it launched the "8425 strategy" which means "promoting 8K, popularizing 4K, replacing 2K and making good use of 5G". BOE has recently launched the 8K solution that incorporates BOE's 4K/8K image service cloud, 8K decoder player, and 8K display device, making it possible to shoot, edit, transmit and broadcast 8K content. This helps to solve problems like the costliness and massive size of traditional decoder players, as well as the lack of 8K content, thus promoting the faster popularization of 8K.

Among several micro displays at BOE's booth is a silicon-based OLED AR product which features monocrystalline silicon as the active drive backplane as well as high resolution, high level of integration, low power consumption, small size, and light weight. The AR product is backed by a 0.39-inch silicon-based OLED which has the world's leading pixel density of 5644PPI, 17 times that of a Retina display, and a contrast ratio over 10000:1, which enables the overlapping and interaction between virtual 3D images and real scenes. All these secure an ultimate experience for users as well as bright prospect in the field of education and training, video games, home decoration, etc.

Moreover, BOE shows its cutting-edge technologies and products such as QLED, mini-LED displays, a number of new applications and products including curved in-car display instruments and BOE iGallery.

Actions S900 in Cubiedboard9 dev board, ATB1103/ATB1109 ARM Cortex-M0

Posted by Charbax – April 20, 2018

Actions S900 is a Quad-core ARM Cortex-A53, the Actions S500 is a Quad-core Cortex-A9. Actions also shows some other products for video smart speaker, smart door bell, smart kids robots, Actions also provides their MIPS based chipset for Bluetooth speakers, here also they are launching their new ATB1103/ATB1109 ARM Cortex-M0 system for their upcoming Bluetooth and perhaps also low cost smart speakers platform.

Allwinner R18, R16, R6 for Amazon Alexa and other smart speaker systems, B288 for E Ink e-reader

Posted by Charbax – April 19, 2018

Allwinner Smart Home solutions including their chipsets and development kit for the R18 which I also filmed here the $26 (169rmb) Allwinner R16 powered Xiao' ai Classmate Smart Speaker Mini by Xiaomi to be delivered in over 5 million units quantity, smart speakers by DIngDong. The Allwinner R6 enables even lower priced smart speakers with a maximum of 2 microphone in the microphone array for devices that will be closer to the user. The Allwinner B288 enables E Ink e-reader supported by DongDong which is China's leading online book store. The Allwinner MR100 powers the fully open source drone project by Kudrone. The Xiaomi Drone uses the Allwinner R16 too. The Allwinner FC1600 powers the Niutingting Early Learning Machine by Benew which reads stories for kids for 2-6 years old. Allwinner T3 for car dashboard and smart mirror, T8 for in-car entertainment. The Xiaomi Robot Vaccum Cleaner uses the Allwinner R16 and uses lasers to calculate distance to walls and navigate to vaccum and mop the floor.

Allwinner A63, A50, A33G

Posted by Charbax – April 16, 2018

Allwinner releases their new ARM SoCs for 64bit and 32bit cost effective tablets, featuring their new Allwinner A63 Quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 with Mali-T760MP2 GPU. This video was filmed at the Allwinner press conference event in Shenzhen where they had a lot of their industry partners, design houses, factories, OEMs, software partners, to see and to hear about the latest of what Allwinner has been working to do for them. The new Allwinner A50 is Allwinner's mid-range Quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 with Mali-400 GPU with support for DDR4 and LPDDR4 RAM, better TLC based Flash memory. For the very entry level Tablet market, Allwinner presents their new Allwinner A33G which is limited at a lower 1.35Ghz clock-speed with a lower resolution display support. While these 3 new ARM Processors by Allwinner are presented as their newest Tablet processors, they are also compatible with all sorts of other devices which could be Robots, interactive Smart Speakers with displays, Smart Rearview Mirrors, Smart Mirrors, Laptops, Desktops, and more. Allwinner also talks about their participation in the Open AI Labs which I also filmed here.

ST booth tour: STM32WB, STM32C2C, ST25DVW, startups, students at Embedded World 2018

Posted by Charbax – March 10, 2018

ST Microelectronics Booth Tour at Embedded World 2018 featuring their major new product announcements (STM32WB, STM32C2C and ST25DVW), featuring ST partners in the ST fanzone with Photon with ToF (Time-of-flight), Conrad robotics, Style spinner, universities and research organisations that ST collaborates with: the CEA-leti for self-flying drones (360 sensor fusion), INSA from Toulouse France for some gameboy projects to teach students about system integration, software defined instrumentation with the CTU university from Prague.

STM32WB is a dual-core MCU with wireless support based on an Arm Cortex‐M4 core running at 64 MHz (application processor) and an Arm Cortex‐M0+ core at 32 MHz (network processor). With two totally independent cores, this innovative architecture is optimized for real‑time execution (radio‑related software processing), resource use flexibility, power management, and a low BOM cost, to bring better user experience. The STM32WB platform is an evolution of the well‐known market-leading STM32L4 ultra‑low‑power series of MCUs. It provides the same digital and analog peripherals suitable for applications requiring extended battery life and complex functionalities. STM32WB proposes a variety of communication assets, a practical crystal-less USB2.0 FS interface, audio support, an LCD driver, up to 72 GPIOs, an integrated SMPS for power consumption optimization, and multiple low-power modes to maximize battery life. On top of wireless and ultra‐low‐power aspects, a particular focus was placed on embedding security hardware functions such as a 256‐bit AES, PCROP, JTAG Fuse, PKA (elliptic curve encryption engine), and Root Secure Services (RSS). The RSS allows authenticating OTA communications, regardless of the radio stack or application.

The STM32WB55 Bluetooth 5 -certified device offers Mesh 1.0 software support, multiple profiles and flexibility to integrate proprietary BLE stacks.

ST25DV-W series of dynamic NFC/RFID tags offers a 13.56 MHz long-range interface compatible with NFC phones and readers. Based on an ISO/IEC 15693 and NFC Forum Type 5 tag, ST25DV tag ICs can be operated from an RFID reader or an NFC phone. They also include an I²C interface that lets them connect to a host (MCU, MPU, etc.). These tags feature an innovative fast transfer mode between an embedded host and an NFC phone or reader thanks to their half-duplex 256-byte buffer. ST25DV dynamic NFC/RFID tags can be used in a wide variety of applications including consumer electronics, industrial, metering, electronic shelf labels, IoT objects and more.

STM32C2C P-L496G-CELL01 STM32 discovery pack for 2G/3G cellular to cloud (STM32-C2C/2G-3G) is a turnkey development platform for cellular and cloud technology based solutions. The pack is composed of an STM32L496AGI6-based low-power discovery mother board with preloaded firmware, and an STMod+ cellular expansion board with antenna. The P-L496G-CELL02 discovery pack for LTE IoT cellular to cloud (STM32-C2C/LTE IoT) is a turnkey development platform for cellular and cloud technology based solutions. The pack is composed of an STM32L496AGI6-based low-power discovery mother board with preloaded firmware, and an STMod+ cellular expansion board with antenna.

PTScientists 2019 Mission to the Moon LTE and 2 rovers

Posted by Charbax – March 5, 2018

Berlin-based new-space company PTScientists is taking you on a Mission to the Moon Working with key technology partners Audi and Vodafone, they aim to drive a pair of Audi lunar quattro rovers on the surface of the Moon, and re-visit the last place that humans set foot on the lunar surface during the Apollo 17 mission 45 years ago. After doing a 384,000 km trip from Earth to the Moon, their ALINA spacecraft will attempt to land safely on the lunar surface to deliver their two Audi Lunar quattro rovers and a range of scientific payloads. Once safely on the Moon, their pair of Audi Lunar quattro rovers will use their four-wheel drive capability to explore the harsh lunar environment to attempt to Drive 500m on the Moon also to test a new lunar communications architecture, with a Vodafone-provided LTE base-station allowing the rovers to transfer data to ALINA. They will attempt to send HD images to the Earth 48 years after the final human footprints were left on the Moon, they will return to the Apollo 17 landing site to capture the first high-resolution images of the original Lunar Roving Vehicle (while taking great care not to disturb the site).