Hi Chris, sorry if I reply late but I'm working hard these days...
I'm the programmer here so I've asked to our electronic experts if they have thoughts. Here what would be useful for us (that are our thoughts, I completely understand that it's likely you have a different vision...) :
- RTC chip / lithium battery arrangement with base / PCB wirings so that the cost of the Netduino remains nearly the same but who wants can put in the chip and the battery and they have a board with RTC without the effort / cost to add a shield using i2c
- The same as above for a watchdog chip (like this ) or the implementation of the internal watchdog so that if the program completely hangs we can automatically reset the board. This is particularly of my interest, I'm very worried to leave the boards in the wild without a reliable auto reset (I've implemented a software watchdog but we can't count so much on it...)
- A way of using some bytes of flash (referred as "simple storage" elsewhere in this forum) so that we can permanently store a configuration. Something like 32 byte are ok for my needs but maybe if we can configure how much to use...
- The possibility to communicate using serial over USB without drivers as the Arduino can do (keyboard emulation would also be of interest...). This would be FANTASTIC for us. We are actually attaching one N2 to every panel PC via RS232 to handle I/O like electrolock, buttons, door sensors but even industrial equipments. We are buying RS232 interface from 3.3V and using a panel pc usb to power N2 and an RS232 to communicate. If we could communicate through USB we could completely remove RS232, choosing a cheaper Panel PC (without serial ports) and no more need to have an RS232 interface.
About the frying of the boards... well, Chris you can't protect 3.3V, no need for that. We have to deal with an electronic board, it's our responsability to take care of it. If we fry... our fault.
What do you think about those suggestions?