Friday, October 7, 2011

Win A Propeller Board!

Aww... so cute!
It's small, it's standalone, it's purple, and it's a Parallax Propeller, aka an experimenters dream. I designed this breakout board and I'm giving away a fully populated board to a lucky reader! I call it the miniProp board.

The Propeller has 8 cores (cogs) that operate together in perfect lockstep. The chip has perfectly deterministic timing and really simple assembly language. Writing device drivers on the Propeller is truly a piece of cake. And when you're done you have several cogs left to do lots of interesting things besides.

One can get a nice, inexpensive Propeller board from Schmartboard. They make soldering SMT devices really easy. And I think it's the cheapest board out there. I have and use one and I recommend it if you want to experiment with Propeller.

But I also wanted a DIP form factor for breadboard experimenting and heck, its fun designing boards. The PropStick USB looks great but it's too pricey for me. The inexpensive miniProp uses a Sparkfun FTDI breakout board programmer. Rev 0.2 is in the works at which point I'll post up the schematics and PCB layout in accordance with the Open Source Hardware definition.

The miniProp says "Hello World!" by blinking an LED
Want one of the Rev 0.1 boards, fully populated and ready to go?  Keep an eye on the Bot Thoughts facebook page during the next week for a chance to win one!


  1. I've wondered about Propeller, and if it would be something to use in place of a Arduino. But with the new Arduino Due out, I'm also considering that.

  2. I almost went Propeller on Data Bus. What do you see as the selling points vs. downsides for your particular application?

  3. Speaking of Data Bus... Have you started on an AVC entry yet? (Assuming that Sparkfun continues the contest)