• Mid-Campaign Updates

    Monday, September 23, 2013

    9/23/2013— Updates

    Tessel goes on tour!

    Technical Machine’s Jon and Kelsey are coming to San Francisco this week! Catch us at our public tech talk (food & drink included) and play with a Tessel:

    Tues, 9/24 6:30pm, San Francisco (SOMA)get free tickets (required)

    RSVP | Tweet about it

    Crowdfunding success and stretch goals

    Our crowdfunding has been a great success so far– check it out! We were the first project ever backed on Dragon Innovation, reaching our goal in under 3 hours. We’re now over 225% backed, but the more funded the project is, the more modules we can afford to build:

    At 100k funding, we added an ambient sensor to the Class A modules. The ambient sensor sends/receives sound, visible light, and IR light. Ever wanted to make a television turn on with a clap? You can with the ambient sensor.

    We surveyed our backers to see what to offer next, and they picked a GPRS/SIM module– so if we hit 130k, we’ll add it, too. A GPRS module will add 2G connectivity, which means Tessel can connect to the internet without wifi. The SIM part will allow Tessel to interact with the telecom network, e.g. sending/receiving text messages.

    What’s more, every additional 30k we raise, we can add another module picked by our backers.

    Help us reach our stretch goals by adding your influence!

    Demo videos and documentation

    We believe in open source.

    Our hardware documentation is now live at https://github.com/technicalmachine/tessel-design-docs. Check it out, share it around, and please let us know what we can clarify! (Tweet this)

    We’ll add more hardware and software documentation as soon as we can.

    Cypress and Jia show how they use Tessel.

    Our friend Cypress and Co-Founder Jia show a couple of simple uses for Tessel.

    Cypress uses Tessel to make a wireless switch for his on-call mother, a midwife, to tell clients when she has to leave the office suddenly. View.

    Jia uses Tessel to help her wake up and get to work. View.

    A little more Q & A

    We’ve had some good questions from our backers:

    How about a video module?

    We would love to make a video module. We played around with the idea before launching the campaign, but didn’t feel comfortable enough with it to release it as a module … yet. We’re open to suggestions for what camera specifications you would enjoy.

    What are the current usages while Tessel is idle, sleeping, and transmitting?

    The peak current while transmitting is ~600mA. Normal usage draws 300mA, and turning off select components (e.g. WiFi, external SDRAM) and putting the main chip to sleep can bring it down as low as 15mA. Tessel has various sleep modes, which we will expose through our JavaScript API. Note that we expect the usage to drop once we begin implementing smart software power control.

    Does the success of crowdfunding speed up shipping dates?

    The best answer we can give is … maybe. We want to ship to you as soon as we can, and the more we raise, the faster we can move. For example, buying parts overseas is cheaper, but also takes weeks longer than buying from a more expensive local supplier. Every bit we raise goes towards Tessel development.

    Will the price change after the crowdfunding campaign?

    Again, the best answer we can give is “maybe”. We want to price Tessel as low as possible, while still sustaining a development budget. The main factor is volume, so it will really depend on our order size. Since we’re still below 1k in order quantity, we’re not yet getting the best possible price.

    Keep asking questions!

    We love hearing from you– reach out to us on Twitter, Facebook, and email.

    Our announcements get to the blog eventually, but we typically email our subscribers first– sign up here to get Technical Machine news.

    Want Technical Machine to give a tech talk at your organization? If you’re in Boston or Seattle, we can probably oblige– shoot us an email!

    That’s all until next time. Keep in touch!

    Love,

    Kelsey, Jia, Jon, Eric, and Tim

    #update #updates #crowdfunding #tessel #technical machine #javascript on hardware #tour #san francisco #sf #software #hardware #stretch goals

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