Thanks @thetechnobear. Great fan of your work both here on the Axoloti site and with the eigenharp. That's a great instrument. I never would have heard of if it weren't for you. Now I have to save up my spare change to get one.
Every controller is intended to be used as either a eurorack module, or packaged together in a single enclosure device.
The LEDs are incredibly compelling indicators. They're full RGB, individually addressable, and can dim/fade. It's not text, but I think there are a lot of intuitive visual elements to program.
I love the battery idea. I've done a lot of circuit design with LiIon/LiPolymer battery charging circuits and I absolutely think it's the way to go. When I was at Burning Man, my Petting Zoo polyphonic sample synth had battery, meaning I was able to go out and interact with people and let them play with the instrument. I found out that my neighbors had a full modular lab in back of their camp, but I didn't even know it existed until the last day, because it wasn't portable. I think there are a lot of new musical/sonic experiences and art machinen that are about to be built because of the lithium battery.
That being said, It's my goal to get down to the most inexpensive controller possible, because when I was 18 and wanted to make music, I was broke. I got to play with my first synth in college after starting a club using student funds. I think 20 is too late to have to wait for something so awesome as synthesizers. I want to be able to offer the most number of people something they can use, and something great for everyone who isn't eating ramen everyday.
Which means we are likely to split features into a basic and advanced model, with the battery power, graphics, text, etc going to the advanced unit. If there is a way to design it so the end user can add on what they need, I'm in favor of that. Also, it's open hardware, and I invite anyone to continue extending and reinventing.