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Project Archived due to Commercial Influence

A project log for Kestrel Computer Project

The Kestrel project is all about freedom of computing and the freedom of learning using a completely open hardware and software design.

Samuel A. Falvo IISamuel A. Falvo II 02/09/2021 at 22:135 Comments

Recently, I discovered a commercial company, Raptor Engineering, which released a small computer (what they call a BMC) which they named the Kestrel.

Whereas,

therefore, I consider the opportunity for market confusion is too great to continue using the Kestrel name.  This is a name that I've been using since early 2004.  Many projects and even commercial products with the name Kestrel have come and gone since then, but none so closely aligned with my project.  So, to that end, I'm terminating further discussion of the Kestrel Computer Project on Hackaday.io.

I cannot accept the risk of legal interference from Raptor should they decide to pursue it.  So, I'm pro-actively archiving this project effective immediately.  I can't afford any time in court right now, and I know my organization skills aren't anywhere close to that required to pose a competent legal defense.

Discussions

f4hdk wrote 03/01/2021 at 10:06 point

Hello Sam.

You should contact this Raptor Engineering company first, in order to know what they think about the situation, before archieving the project.

Do you plan to reopen the project with another name? Still on Hackaday?

  Are you sure? yes | no

Samuel A. Falvo II wrote 03/01/2021 at 19:09 point

I plan to start a new project entirely, but only after I have a working foundation of hardware and system software.  I'm also returning to the use of a stack-architecture processor core to drive it.  This time, it'll be a proper two-stack architecture (unlike the Kestrel-2's S16X4 core).  I *do* intend on continuing with RISC-V support in the future; but, I want to get something working sooner rather than later.  Forth CPUs are simpler, and therefore faster, for me to develop.

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Samuel A. Falvo II wrote 03/01/2021 at 19:10 point

I should add that Raptor and I have communicated in the past, and they were never pleasant to deal with.  I'm not going to bother this time around.  The company is run by a bully, and their tactics past and present demonstrates this.

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Wenting Zhang wrote 02/28/2021 at 18:37 point

That's kind of sad, when I first read the news, the first project came to my mind is this one. Is there any plan to like rename the project and continue?

  Are you sure? yes | no

Samuel A. Falvo II wrote 03/01/2021 at 19:25 point

Rename the project and continue -- no.  Instead, I'll be starting over from scratch.  I'll basically pick up where I left off with the Kestrel-2, switching back to using stack-architecture processors for rapid hardware design and software bring-up, and go from there.  When/if I feel I have a reasonable working subset of my goal, then I'll create a new project here on Hackaday.io.

In a sense, I want to focus on "getting back to where I was," and make up for the time lost in the Kestrel-3 project.  While I do want to continue to pursue a RISC-V processor for the computer, I feel my time is better spent working with a core I know how to get working rapidly.  Longer term, I plan on providing a RISC-V processor as a coprocessor card that plugs into an existing system.  I do still plan on (eventually) being able to run Plan 9 on it.

Right now, I envision a computer design that is built more like the RC2014, with a standard backplane into which various purpose-built cards plug into, including both the Forth-type and RISC-V processor cards.

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