Well, it has been a wild rollercoaster ride. It was fun. It was annoying. It was amazing. It was frightening. It was unique.
I think most of you experienced the same during the loooong waiting period we had up until now.
There were times when I asked myself 'What the heck have I gotten myself into?'.
There were tons of rocks blocking our road - and each time I feared "Okay. This is it. Now everyone is gonna cancel and I have to pay debts for the next 20 years!"
I think I'm not the only one in the project who experienced the same.
On the other side, there were many things that kept us going. The progress the project made. How much you anticipated the videos. The reactions on the board when you saw the first prototype. And when you saw the first prototype case.
It was a long and bumpy ride. But now we we're there. Many many boards are finished already and are just waiting for the cases. The cases that took so long. But finally, we were content with them. We gave the green light. All that's left now is the production.
During the last days, activity on the boards has raised. And what I did read there made me happy.
Some devs I know and respect since the good old GP32 days received their Pandora - and they all do call it a beauty.
The whole community seems so happy that we finally finished it. The ranting has stopped.
Now I'm really sure what we did was the right thing. And that's why I want to say THANK YOU! Thank you all!
... Michael, who really did a fantastic job designing the system and organizing so many things around the production.
... Craig, who was the guy that started all of it and kept us going. He was the one taking most the risk. And he was the one who convinced us to do it!
... Fatih, who did source a lot of the parts and companies we're working with.
... DaveC who decsigned the complete case all alone! A great achievement!
... notaz, who did work on a lot of lowlevel stuff and is now fixing various bugs that are still left. A very nice and talented chap!
... DJWillis for working on the OS image and getting WiFi to work!
... skeezix for developing the PND system and contributing various other stuff to the OS
... cpasjuste for working on various ports and pmenu.
....vimacs, for supplying quite a few scripts and helping skeezix with the libraries and PND system.
... Pickle for porting many many games.
... Squidge for testing the SoCs.
... all other devs that did help us in some way
... and of course all of you! The community! The ones that kept us going! The ones that laid their money into our hands to produce this great little machine! Thanks!
So, what will happen next?
We don't even know yet how many cases the chinese factory is able to produce until the new year or IF they are even able to produce them, however, the most important thing is that nothing needs to be changed anymore. So in worst case, they start the mass production after their new years break which is February 22nd. Not a big deal after waiting for such a long time.
Of course, once this starts, we'll try to finish your Pandoras as fast as possible. Will be a few weeks, I guess, as we shouldn't forget about shipping. The cases need to be shipped from China to America (takes a few days). After the Mass production, they need to be shipped to us (takes a few days as well) and from there they need to be shipped to you.
We'll keep you informed about what happens as usual.
As most work is going on with the OS right now, I'll set up a status page with what has to be done and what has been done for the OS soon.
Want to shake hands or talk with me?
You all do know me from the boards, I guess. However, if you want to meet me in real life: I'll be at the CeBIT in Hannover, Germany on March 6th. From 12pm - 1pm I'll be doing a presentation about OpenSource gaming handhelds. Of course, I'll have the Pandora with me. So if you happen to be there, why not join us there? I'll be posting more information about this soon.