Hi Curt,

See responses inline.

On Sat, Apr 13, 2013 at 8:59 AM, Curtis Olson <curtolson@flightgear.org> wrote:
For one of our projects, we had a simple board designed the old fashion way -- it was basically just a bunch of interconnects between a pinto-th board and other plug in components.  It would be pretty cool to redo the design in geppetto and be able to drop the pinto-th (which we only used to keep our own board design simpler.)  What seems to be missing for our project would be the ability to arrange rows of 0.1" pins in specific places (so other components could plug directly into the board) and then connect those 0.1" pins to arbitrary pins on the overo (or connect one 0.1" pin to another 0.1" pin.)  If we could do that I think we'd be pretty close to being able to do everything we need ... especially if the pins coming out of the overo had optional ttl level translation logic you could add.

This is an interesting idea that we are looking into. Electrical design within Geppetto is based on buses, rather than signals (though GPIO, for example, are one-signal buses), so there is currently no way to specify a pinout right now. Would grouped pins be an acceptable alternative?

This is a great idea if it lowers the entry barrier to designing custom embedded hardware!  $2k setup fee seems steep, but by the time you count up the hours to design a board with traditional tools and all that is involved there, it's probably a pretty reasonable deal for people who are actually serious about building real boards.

We are working on improving the community section so that users can better collaborate and split the setup fee. In the meantime, ad-hoc crowdfunding will work too -- the UAV community seem particularly adept at this.
 
Is geppetto something gumstix is developing themselves, or is it just an application of a really cool 3rd party app that I never knew existed?

Geppetto is our own service that we've developed for customers who have asked us for custom expansion boards. I'm happy you like it, we're really excited about what it can do and the long list of features in the pipeline... stay tuned!

-
Neil