Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 18th Nov 2005 15:49 UTC
Morphos Genesi, the company behind the Open Desktop Workstation and Pegasos platform, has decided to open up all aspects of the PegasosPPC. "We have decided to make the complete design and component listing for the PegasosPPC available for free download."
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Just like the good old days....
by on Fri 18th Nov 2005 15:59 UTC

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It's time to really build a computer instead of simply plugging stuff together.

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It has been a very long time since motherboards (or a lot of the more modern electronics) have been built using only a single layer with front and back. These days, a large portion of things are at least 4 layers of wiring sandwiched in a board, and often more.

What that means is that if only for the board alone, someone somewhere needs to put up a fairly hefty bit of capital for doing small runs of boards, whether they build them themselves (not something likely in a home shop) or have it farmed out. This isn't something that would be economical for short runs, because the costs are too high: you'd be better off buying the unpopulated board from Genesi directly in terms of costs, complete with all sockets installed.

And even once you have a board that has all the sockets, there's still a hellish amount of soldering involved with surface mount devices, etc. which will take a fairly large amount of time for the best hobbiest to complete, assuming they are very careful and are sufficiently coordinated. That sort of work is more commonly done in mass production using wave soldering, or automated equipment.

The days of building a "modern" computer by hand that's even remotely financially viable for the money saved (if that's possible at all) is long past. At best, it only makes sense for prototyping a system that doesn't exist.

Jonathan Thompson

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