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Euro startup unveils credit-card sized Linux system

Apr 28, 2000 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 2 views

Martigny, SWITZERLAND — Swiss startup Smartdata today unveiled a credit-card sized embedded Linux computer called µ-computer Chipslice. The tiny device, which runs uClinux, is intended to be used in a wide range of mobile, portable, and wearable computing applications.

According to Jean-Pierre Buttet, founder and CEO of Smartdata, the company has created “the world's first Linux-powered smartcard, which contains a revolutionary architecture that allows multiple combinations of functionality within one device.” Buttet says his company has applied for a patent on “technology that enables the production of cost effective credit card sized modular pocket internet appliances.” Typical applications targeted by the devices include mobile internet appliances, wearable computers, PDAs, mobile phone companions, PC companions, mobile micro webservers, and smartcard readers.


The tiny credit-card sized computer includes . . .

  • 16MHz 68EZ328 DragonBall Microcontroller
  • 4Mbyte FLASH and 2Mbyte SRAM
  • Interfaces: RS232, USB, SPI, LCD, touchscreen
  • Additional 8 I/O to control SPI bus devices
  • Integrated voltage regulator for power supply (battery or directly from USB host powered)
  • Software: Linux kernel, based on uClinux
  • Dimensions: 3.5 x 2.1 x .1 in. (86 x 54 x 2.9 mm)
About Smartdata

Smartdata is a spin-off of ACS SA (, a 9-year old Swiss firm active in the field of engineering for the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and chemical industries. Founder, chairman and CEO of Smartdata, Jean-Pierre Buttet has participated in the creation of seven engineering firms.

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