$5 Arduino-compatible Linux board

this new dev board on Kickstarter looks interesting. They claim to be Arduino-Campatible, but what they have is actually another board with its own ATMega chip. Kinda like the Arduino Yun. Curious to see what you guys think.

Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/onion/omega2-5-iot-computer-with-wi-fi-powered-by-linux

Thanks for sharing the link. You're right. It is not an arduino compatible board. The dock is an arduino.

I wonder how quickly it boots and how much of an abuse (yanking power cord, some short circuits etc.) it will take before giving up. If it boots fast (a few seconds) then it would be great to run python code on it. The onboard storage is only 16MB I wonder if the system is on a separate ROM and 16MB is user space for files.

Lots of potentials, if there is enough software support. Like the USB on header design.

Does it have a compelling benefit over the Pi Zero (other than the fact that the Pi Zero isn't actually available for $5 - but that thing isn't available at all yet)? The Pi has so much material available for it online, and is so much more capable as a computer. And for home automation tasks, why not just use an ESP8266?

Pi zero has no USB D+ D- on headers, unfortunately. It looks ugly with all the adapters and cables. If smaller computers can boot faster and easily to integrate onto a 2-layer board that many can design, there is some room for them.

To me (an academic bulk buyer) the product looks good. It provides a lot of flexibility combined with a wide range of applications. Unfortunately my 'stewardship guidelines' do not allow me to back fundraising projects such as kickstarter, but I sure hope this goes commercial. I'd buy some next month for the Fall semester if they were available now.

I like it. The 5 dollar version has usb and wifi. The bluetooth is a dongle in the usb. If I pay 5 dollars now, they ship me a board this year ? I seriously doubt that. The expansion dock (or mini dock or power dock) is needed for easy usage, that is 15 dollars extra, making it a 20 dollars board.

Amazing. Is there any point in developing boards these days when you can buy all that for $5?

Graynomad:
Amazing. Is there any point in developing boards these days when you can buy all that for $5?

Yes… all that stacking: board-on-board-on-board-on-board-on-board…
Looks silly and ugly.

DrAzzy:
<…>
And for home automation tasks, why not just use an ESP8266?

Take that a step further… I’m paying about $3 each for the NodeMCU boards and at that low price, it becomes effective to toss away the WiFi and use the NodeMCU as a 32-bit, 80/160MHz straight Arduino IMO. With the RF disabled, power is lowered into the range of other 32-bit boards such as the Maple STM32F103 clones.
Check it out

Ray

WiFi has come a long way. I remember using the TI cc3000 way back, they were like $50 each. And then there is the ESP boards, that really made WiFi affordable. Now for a comparable price there is WiFi and Linux. I guess Moore's law still holds!

jmycroft: WiFi has come a long way. I remember using the TI cc3000 way back, they were like $50 each. And then there is the ESP boards, that really made WiFi affordable. Now for a comparable price there is WiFi and Linux. I guess Moore's law still holds!

And the original Arduino Wi-Fi shield was $90+ a pop. I still have a few around.

Graynomad: Amazing. Is there any point in developing boards these days when you can buy all that for $5?

Maybe, but certainly not as exciting as it was before. Remember Arduboy with mono graphic LCD and ATMEGA32U4? I bet you can run linux on $5 boards to totally beat an Arduboy.

I could call several of the boards I designed back in early 2010 unique enough to fill a niche or two. Now I'm not so much into developing boards anymore. "Get a computer for $5!". That's just hard to beat, even if your usage case is completely different from the $5 board.

Anyway, I'm developing an open source data logger that entirely bases on popular and cheap ebay modules instead of using any SMD components like my original design with 1284P. It's going to cost someone $25 to get all of these modules and only requires basic soldering skills to assemble because everything is thru-hole on the board.

That Omega2 looks interesting, an update to the Yun Hardware I guess. I was looking at the Yun Shield but it sold out, and no sign of it returning. I got my first Pi Zero last week, and it works more or less as a Linux box. I put SSH, Samba and the AVR toolchain on the little SBC gum stick and set it up on my network, it has been sipping a few Watts for the last week (seems to run fine). I have a board on order to mount the Pi on a shield so I can try the toolchain, SPI, and I2C. For some reason, I want to use the Pi as a host machine and the AVR as the physical interface. The AVR can turn stuff like SSR's on/off but the Pi needs some help to do that. The AVR makes a nice programmable bridge/instrument.

A lot of these board-level computers live or die based on the level of support they receive from the vendor and community. Which in turn is partially dependent on having enough customers.

Arduino (AVR) and Raspberry Pi have great support. ESP8266, ARM, and MIPS Arduinos and similar are a bit on-the-edge. A bunch of the other linux-running SBCs - not so much :-(

Getting excited about yet another unproven vendor who may or may not reach "critical mass" just because they THINK they can afford to sell a board a new low price point - not going to happen (for me, anyway.)

How long does it take an arduino YUN or YUN shield to boot to command line with networking etc?

I imagine that it is built to work despite frequent resets and power losses?

liudr: How long does it take an arduino YUN or YUN shield to boot to command line with networking etc?

I imagine that it is built to work despite frequent resets and power losses?

With wifi mine takes 50-60 seconds.

mart256,

Thanks. A raspberry pi zero can take up to 20 seconds to boot to command line. All of these may be acceptable for many projects but too long for other projects.

What about shutting down time and did you have to refresh the system after a while (maybe file system corruption from random shut down without 'sudo halt'?

liudr: A raspberry pi zero can take up to 20 seconds to boot to command line. All of these may be acceptable for many projects but too long for other projects.

From this video on the previous generation Onion Omega, it looks like boot time is around 50 seconds to the command prompt. The current kick starter version should be a bit faster, but a boot time of several tens of seconds would be expected.

The fastest arm boot I've seen online would be about 6 seconds to some bare metal program. I'm not surprised that this Omega2 will take 30 seconds or longer to get ready, which will NOT work for many projects. What I'm bummed out about these cheap nix boards is how they tell you it's only 5USD but won't tell you the dirty details. An atmega328P starts within less than a second from power up or power-down sleep. It's instant. It may cost more to spin a board with all the power saving techniques than 5USD but there is need for such thing.

On a separate unrelated note, I've not tried any ESP8266 products. How long is the wait? Does anyone know?

I was surprised at the bootup speed of the Pi Zero, I normally sip my coffee and water the garden while the old Intel box boots. I think the desktop is using 15 cents a day in power so I turn it off when I'm not using it, but the Pi Zero cost nothing to run so why not, well except when it needs an update. I will lose time compiling AVR code with the Pi Zero, as it is slower as a cross compiler than the old desktop (need to see how annoying that is).

As a side note, I just realized how little I will care if my custom AVR board nukes the Pi Zero while I am working on it. My AVR board is not a well tested Uno (lol) it is my own contraption. I have had bad dreams that a board error could damage the expensive desktop I use (board layout, and stuff) until I started using the Linux box, at which point I cared a lot less. With the Pi Zero, smoke is even less of a care (don't get me wrong I'm very cautious with this stuff).

From my records, RPI0 with Jessie and some programs I installed booted in 23 seconds. With Jessie light, don't wait for network, and SSH disabled, it booted in 17 seconds, or 2 extra seconds if you don't disable SSH. So the 20 second is real. The fastest I can do with RPI3B and Jessie is about 13 seconds. Booting seems be only a single-core's job.