Well, my prototype boards arrived from BatchPCB (http://www.batchpcb.com.) Thanks guys, the boards look nice and went together well. I received two copies of my protoboard and set one up for each of the primary configurations. For the more minimal configuration (just the board, itself,) I soldered the male headers from the LaunchPad to the bottom of the protoboard. Notice that I placed the headers in from the bottom and soldered on the top of the board:
The reason for inserting the headers from the bottom, is because of the jumper pins connecting the emulation section of the LaunchPad to the target section. With the male header inserted from the top (component) side, there is not enough room for soldering components to the Protoboard. Even with inserting the headers from the bottom, you will need to be careful, there is not much room.
Now, you can build your own circuit to add to the LaunchPad. Insert the components just like you were using a solderless breadboard and then solder them down. Wah-laa, nice and simple. Create any kind of Booster Pack that you want, and with this solder version, you have a nice stable circuit.
Next, for when you are starting out and still experimenting; check out the solderless version:
When you want to do some quick-and-dirty experimenting, this will give you everything you need to add your own components. I took one of my Digital Interface Kits (http://zenstore.granzeier.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=6,) and a couple of hookup wires, and added a second programmable pushbutton switch and one more LED; all in just a minute or two.
Now with a notebook (or netbook), the USB cable that came with your LaunchPad, the above dev kit and a small assortment of components, you can do your experimenting, even while on the go.
The solderless version of the kit will include the board, two female pass-through headers, two female headers for the power rails and a small solderless breadboard. Solder the headers onto your Booster Pack board and then peel the backing off the double-sided tape on the bottom of the breadboard and stick it in between the pass-through headers. Add your components and wire them together with hookup wires. Write your program and get everything running. When your circuit is working, you can transfer it to the soldered board for a permanent Booster Pack.
The soldered version of this kit will include the board and two 10-pin male headers. You will solder them into the board and then you can add your own components. Plug the completed board into your LaunchPad and you have your Booster Pack!
Both versions will give you full flexibility in a compact package, yet will still allow you full access to the LaunchPad’s on-board programmable pushbutton, two LEDs and the reset button.
Now, here is what I need from you: does this look like something that would interest you? Am I missing something extremely important? Is RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances, i.e. Lead-Free) important? If there is lots of interest, I will order a larger initial order of boards. Thanks for your help on this item.