Twitter Facebook

email contfooact@bananian.org

FrOSCon 2014 FAQ

We attended the FrOSCon 9 (August 23rd + 24th 2014, St. Augustin, Germany) and collected some questions for LeMaker.

Forgot your question? Just let me know and I will ask LeMaker for you!


1.) IS HDMI-CEC SUPPORTED (LIKE ON RASPBERRY PI)?
You can check the relative information from:
http://linux-sunxi.org/A20
http://forum.lemaker.org/2366-2-1-2.html
http://www.cubieforums.com/index.php?topic=1140.0
From the information above, we can see the hardware is support hdmi-cec. Under general Linux, the driver hdmi-cec and library libcec should be modified, now the sunxi test hdmi-cec that it only turn on or off monitor. Under Android, the driver maybe more possible. As the android source code is come from Allwinner not sunxi.org.


2.) ARE ALL SOURCES AVAILABLE (KERNEL, HARDWARE DRIVERS/FIRMWARE, especially the Mali 400 graphics chip)?
All source code include kernel, hardware driviers/firmware, LeMaker will open to public, except that LeMaker also use some dynamic lib that do not open to us. LeMaker will open all the source code we have. For mali 400 graphics source code, we also get from sunxi upstream.


3.) IS THE CIRCUIT LAYOUTS LAYOUT ALSO OPEN SOURCE AND/OR AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD?
Of course. The circuit layouts will be open source like cubieboard and pcduino.


4.) WHERE CAN I GET A GPIO PIN DOCUMENTATION?
http://forum.lemaker.org/30-1-1-banana_pi_pin_definition.html
http://wiki.lemaker.org/WiringPi
http://linux-sunxi.org/A20/PIO
From the information above, you can get the pin definition of Banana Pi and other detail instructions about IO function of A20 chip. For using wiringPi and RPi.GPIO like IO libraries, people can use the examples and documentations in the libraries original websites. LeMaker just modified them to make them work on Banana Pi.


5.) ARE THE GPIO PINS COMPATIBLE TO RASPBERRY PI?
Yes. The GPIO pins function are the same as Raspberry Pi. And LeMaker now has made wiringPi, RPi.GPIO, BCM2835 GPIO libraries work on Banana Pi. The only difference is the PWM output in Banana Pi is CON-07, but Raspberry Pi is 12 pin.


6.) WHAT IS THE USB OTG PORT FOR? HOW CAN IT BE USED?
The USB OTG port is same as the OTG port in a mobile phone. Some android mobile phone can use the OTG port to read and write data from or to a usb disk. And under general Linux OS on Banana Pi, we can use it just like a usb port. We can connect usb disk or usb keyboard, and so on. You just need a USB OTG cable to connect to the OTG port.


7.) WHO IS LEMAKER? COULD YOU PROVIDE SOME GENERAL INFORMATION ON LEMAKER?
LeMaker consists of passion and creative young PhDs and Masters who focus on Education, Robotics, Internet of things, Smart home, LED, other science and engineering It is founded at early this year. LeMaker hope to become a new and great Maker team, Opensource community and Sharing platform. LeMaker, just like its name, Le + Maker, “Le” means Love and Help in Chinese, so LeMaker meant for loving maker movement, help makers and promote creativity. LeMaker aims at to be a public welfare organisation and contribute to education, promoting opensource spirit all over the world. We now have about 30 people in LeMaker team, some are opensource lovers. LeMaker come from China, but not just stay in China, we are stepping into the whole world. LeMaker hope to build a good relation with all the opensource communities. Eventually, LeMaker will be a platform to help makers all the world to make their ideas to reality, and contribute more effort to education to help children know much more about science and cultivate them with sharing spirit.


8.) WHAT IS YOU INTENTION WITH THE BANANA PI? WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS?SOME PEOPLE HAD RESERVATIONS TOWARDS A CHINESE COMPANY.
The initial intention for Banana Pi is education. And the Raspberry Pi has strong and huge community and resource, we want to use its extension boards and some software, so we design our Banana Pi to IO compatible with Raspberry Pi, and try our best to make its software work on Banana Pi. We all know that the performance of Raspberry Pi has some disadvantages, such as no sata, no 1Gb ethernet, only 512M memory. We want to provide people a more powerful single board computer to help them complete more projects that Raspberry Pi has its short performance. Like onwcloud, the Raspberry Pi has sata and no 1Gb ethernet, so Banana Pi is more suitable for Owncloud. We do not expect to replace Raspberry Pi, we just want to make up some disadvantage that Raspberry Pi has. As we say, LeMaker hope to become a opensource and sharing community that help promote maker movement and creativity and contribute to education, so Banana Pi is just one platform to realize ideas. We will design more powerful and interesting products to make life better and enrich.
Chinese company has some bad record in the world, but I want to say China is developing, and Chinese creativity is also very powerful. And LeMaker consists of young PhDs and masters, we are all under good educations, we have passion and creativity to realize our dream. Like America dream, we also have Chinese dream. We promise LeMaker will be a new representative of China.


9.) What about XBMC support and hardware acceleration for MPEG4 and other video formats?
http://forum.lemaker.org/1707-1-2-mali_gpu_driver.html
http://forum.lemaker.org/1837-1-1-_howto_installation_and_configuration.html
http://forum.lemaker.org/1482-1-1-new_image_ready_to_burn_clean_with_xbmc_.html
http://linux-sunxi.org/XBMC
http://linux-sunxi.org/Mali_binary_driver
http://sunxi.org/CedarX
From above, we can see that XBMC works well under Android on Banana Pi, 720p and 1080p both perfect. Under general Linux, the XBMC can work now, but not perfect. For hardware acceleration, it works very well under mplayer and vlc, not mater Android or Linux.


(Questions collected at FrOSCon 9, answers by LeMaker)