Because I care. Been doing it for five years now. I designed all the crappy boards and I over see the crappy manufacturing operation and the 100 people trying to get this all right. We have been in production for three weeks now. I just stopped production last week for a whole week because of the issues you mentioned in the SW. Why? Because we strive for crappy quality.
Anyone complaining about the BBB most have never tried the rPi. The rPi launched with many issues, some of which still exist today.
I am extremely grateful to Gerald and Jason for all the hard work they have put into the whole Beagle family. They deserve better than people who start a conversation with our community by bitching about problems they never gave anyone a chance to fix.
Actually, as the owner of 8 Pis, a PandaBoard ES and potentially a BeagleBoard I feel I have something to add here.
The first iteration of the software for the Pi was terrible! The kernel was highly unstable and the entire USB system was just a nightmare!
Now, nearly a year later, it’s amazingly stable. There are still performance issues with the USB (essentially it was designed for a mobile phone so using it for a file server is “challenging”) but the machine is now rock solid.
How did this happen?
Effort! With well over a million Pis sold a lot of hackers got their hands on them. I was one of many who provided kernel panic messages (having bought a FTDI connector and set it up). Also the spectacular work of (for example) the Raspbian people (all two of them) who created a custom build of everything.
In short an amazing group of people worked together to produce an excellent result.
I see no reason why the same shouldn’t happen for the BBB. In fact, I positively expect it. Gerald is doing fantastic work in this area and in fact his comments in this thread have pretty much convinced me to buy one.
Pity about the build quality issues though. Hopefully these should be sorted out now and I hope to get one of the “second batch” as they come through (we’re out of stock currently here in the UK).
Also worth a mention is Robert Nelson for his work on kernel builds. Since TI stopped full support of the OMAP range it looks like he’s our kernel-meister in chief.
Anyway, I for one wanted to publicly support everyone working on this. I’d take up Gerald’s offer of a new BBB and work with us all to make it a great product.
Thank you sire for your feed back and conversation!
Sire? I meant sir! I wonder about the people they hire to create spell checkers!
It isn’t crap and most of us know it. From my own work to build prototype PCBs that a FAR less complex I know that they are very often a work in progress over time. I fully understood that going in… buying a product that was brand new on the market would have stumbles and I might even be stuck with hardware bugs. It’s to be expected. I think the 3.8 kernel and the uSD are the two biggest stumbling points and really, beyond a little disappointment that I can’t start right away I’m happy with the 2 boards I have. Arch Linux had an image that worked up within days and they are operating now on my wireless network all day long without any problems using cheap WiFi dongles. If using the SD for non-boot storage becomes easier in the future that would eliminate a lot of the current grumbling.
I think they are remarkable boards and once we all get through the early woes they are going to be really popular among the groups they are targeted at. Not dismissing QC failures, but it is a process to reduce the chance of a bad product getting out, not eliminate entirely. I can understand the OP’s aggravation. I was saying some not nice words the first day too trying to figure things out, and a couple of items I have bought met their doom against a wall at 1:00am when I lost my temper. They are not crap in the least and I’m thrilled to see something at $45 with the I/O capability this board has.
We are looking forward to the community helping us improve it.
Gerald and Team,
I read the entire thread. I own a BB and a rPi and couple Arduino and Parallax Basic Stamp. Will soon buy a BBB. I wanted to let you know that you and your team are very quick in helping and responding to questions and problems. I appreciate your efforts. I recently RMA’d a BB, I connected 5v to a GPIO pin and the board went unresponsive.
Your service was excellent and the cost for minimal. Keep up the good work you and your team are doing. Its challenging but it’ll pay off. ( I know you said you don’t get paid for most of the extra hrs you put in )
lol . . .
“Tell you what. If you are interested, Send me your address to email@example.com and I will send you another board to try. Worse case, you can try for 30 pieces.”
I’ve got a pulverizer here, Do i win some kind of prize if i can get it into 30 million pieces ?
You’re too nice Gerald.
Hmm. I guess I would take a perfectly good board, make sure it is good, make a video of it, then grind it up and send it to you!