[Linux-aus] Hello everyone! and Grant Request

Mark Tearle mtearle at linux.org.au
Sat Jul 2 18:30:03 UTC 2005

On Sun, 26 Jun 2005, Tim Ansell wrote:

> Hi,

> Date: Sunday, 26 Jun
> Project Name: Budget Asterisk Phone Interface (BAPI)
> Aim of Project:
> For those who don't know, Asterisk is the premier Open Source VOIP
> solution. I have found for Asterisk to be the most useful both hardware
> for interfacing with the telephone system (FXO) and for interfacing
> with the telephones (FXS) is required.
> Cheap FXO devices currently exists (of the order of $AUS 25 per line).
> As well many VOIP providers offer cheap PSTN termination services which
> make FXO devices even less important (OzTel currently charges $AUS 2.95
> per month per line).
> FXS devices are still very expensive however (the cheapest being around
> $AUS 70 per line). A FXS line is required for every internal phone, so
> while it Asterisk might be able to get away with a small number of FXO
> lines it needs numerous FXS lines.


> The clear benefit of this project is that cheap FXS devices become
> available. This could dramatically increase Asterisk's penetration into
> areas which would not normally consider VOIP PBX to be cost effective
> savings, such as small business and general home usage. It will also
> help further the goal of moving to a completely open system, one which
> includes open hardware.

Quick question:  how are you going to deal with compliance and
certification to Australian Standards for these devices?

> Request:
> Please consider all these requests separately. I have just proposed
> everything I could think of related to this project as I have little to
> go on from previous applications.
> I would like funding to cover the cost of producing the prototype PCB
> boards. I need to produce a double layer PCB with 8 milli-inch tracks
> with a solder mask. The two best places I have found are
> http://www.olimex.com/pcb/protod.html
> https://www.33each.com/!33each1.asp
> Which both charge $US 33 per PCB. I believe it will take me between 4
> and 8 prototypes before the final design is finished. This means the
> cost will be around ~$US 200. I did hear that some people at the
> linux.conf.au might also be able to do this cheaply, but have lost
> contact with them.
> I also would like some help with the cost of parts. I have managed to
> source most of the chips as "free samples" in sufficient quantity to
> not need to buy any. However I need to purchase other SMD components
> such as resistors and capacitors. Most of these however only come in
> groups of 50 or 100 (at $AU 0.10 cents each). So far I have spent
> around ~$AU 200 buying parts for usage on this project. I will soon
> spend another ~$AU 50 for more parts. I was hopping to get a small fund
> (maybe $AU 200-$AU 500) which I can use to buy (and re-emburse) these
> parts. Specialised SMD to DIP converters and similar for prototyping
> could also be purchased from this fund. Any expensive parts brought and
> are left over would be available for other projects.
> As I have only recently started participating in hardware side of the
> Open Source world, I am lacking a few tools for working on it. A
> quality soldering iron would be a welcome addition (current using a
> cheap $14 soldering iron). Other welcome tools include an Oscilloscope
> (a second hand one would be cool - been using the Uni's currently),
> universal chip programmer and a quality digital multimeter (using
> another cheap one). All these devices vary quite a lot in price and
> second hand are just as good.
> As the Open Source software for producing PCB is still primate I have
> been using a piece of software called "CadSoft Eagle". While this
> product is not "free as in freedom" there is a version which is "free
> as in beer" (which runs on Windows, Linux and MacOSX). This should
> allow everyone to view and produce PCBs from the design.
> While I have been using the free version, I am running up against it's
> restrictions. I would like to purchase a full copy of the Standard
> version for Students which costs $US 298.50, I understand if people
> think this is inappropriate usage of the money.

It's a pity you are not in WA, the University Computer Club has a lot of
these resources available for use in it's clubroom (thinking soldering
irons and such).   I wonder are there similar groups in SA that could
help out?

Mark Tearle - mtearle at linux.org.au

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