how to make a bootable USB linux sine pinebook will not boot up
The Pinebook Pro Wiki Page:

The Pinebook Pro is capable of booting from eMMC, USB 2.0, USB 3.0, or an SD card. It cannot boot from USB-C. The boot order of the hard-coded ROM of its RK3399 SoC is: SPI NOR, eMMC, SD, USB OTG.

At this time, the Pinebook Pro ships with a Manjaro + KDE build with u-boot on the eMMC. Its boot order is: SD, USB, then eMMC.

Are these built by little old men on their kitchen table with instructions in English?

I think one of them broke off the toggle on my eMMc switch 'cuz there ain't none. Can't turn off the memory anyway so it really doesn't much matter to try to make this system useful for me. Have fun guys but mine goes up on the shelf as a trophy. Nice machine but no useable software.
I guess you don't understand,, there are in effect 2 boots
The 1st is to uboot (boot order fixed),, THEN uboot changes the boot order (always, AFAIK)
As to your problem, unlike most other emmc provisioned devices,
the emmc is NOT soldered down, you can remove it
In, for example a TV box with soldered emmc, to disable emmc you have to short clock to gnd
Then, after SD boot, the emmc can be hot-plugged and the echo commands to enable it
OR,, buy a usb carrier and write OS image from other computer
OR write a different uboot to emmc (which can be done even from an emmc boot)
The switch in my latest one didn't look like it could work either, but it did. I wish I had taken pictures, it's nothing like the wiki.

*Everyone* that's had one of these gets confused by the way they boot. Well I should say by the way they don't, when they don't. Don't sweat it, you'll get it.

[ SRA accepts you ]
In the end , I basically removed all uboot or towboot from SPI completely. then followed instructions to remove uboot from EMMC with 2 lines of code. then I booted to Armbian on SD card, and from there I installed OS on EMMC.

I also tried the EMMC switch off, power button on for 2-3 seconds, then EMMC switch on. trick and that worked too one of the many times I installed a different OS on EMMC in past 2 weeks. This allows me to boot off the SD card, and then from there write to the emmc.

Popping off the EMMC completely also works to boot into SD card. but then you have no EMMC to write an OS to.

there is a RESET and Recover button on bottom also near the edge. a few times when I could not use Power button to get a red light on top keyboard, I hit reset button on bottom for 3-4 seconds and I got red light power.

Make sure to have power supply plugged into battery sometimes, since the battery doesn't last long, sometimes it's just not booting from no battery power.
I think (not 100% sure) that holding pwr button 20+s is equivalent to reset button,
call it "hard reset" ,, because there is a battery the cpu can get in a "confused" state
ie try to boot a SD with an A64 OS on it,,, you will think you have bricked it,,
no, it just needs a hard reset (& , of course, the A64 sd removed)

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