In the same way, I believe it would be feasible to do an open source tethered setup in limited time; external processing of the files could then take over: Many on this forum are skilled software engineers. I am not so sure that a mobile camera is an attainable short time goal.
Why rush? A half-baked product won't sell, even if you get it to work.
I believe one should first focus on the market. Who will buy it, why will they and for how much, and how will it be shipped?
A tethered chip to custom software is what you'll find on many researchers' and students' tables. It's not that hard to do. A 'product' is a much more complicated thing. The Digital Bolex Camera is an excellent case study.
Let's discuss -
- what you'd like to see as useful features
I think we need to start looking at the market in depth before a single electron is allowed to misbehave.
Personally, all I could ever hope for is a Mamiya 7 with a replaceable back, with room to grow until it is 6x7. Small, minimal, easy to calibrate, and a rangefinder already built in (no need to design an EVF or mirror mechanism). Maybe it can start with a fixed leaf shutter lens, an 80mm f/2.8.
No tethering and no mirror - why focus on 'satisfied' MFDB owners? The smart thing to do is go for the Pentax 645D or DSLR or Leica M crowd. Tethering means you need software and a computer. Eliminate the variables and focus on the basics - sensor, firmware, metering, color, body and one lens.
DNG files on CF or SD cards (licensing fees apply from SD). Maybe Sony will have a better deal on their media. Zeiss could supply the lens. Once the camera is up and running, the CF card can be wi-fi enabled for wireless tethering. Let someone right the tethering tools later, right?
The 44x33 Sony sensor definitely does video, but that is another ball game entirely.
Where will it be made and which country is the most cost effective in the immediate sales cycle?
Which license will be be under? Open source is a generic term. Who will look after patenting, accounting and admin?
What would be the long term goals of this enterprise? What structure will it take?