I've looked at the Atmel AT86RF212 datasheet and some example code, and compared that to the RFM12B datasheet and the code in the RF12 library used in the JeeNode. I believe I could fairly quickly port the RF12 library to use Atmel's part. Some features, like a fast SPI interface and 128-byte TX/RX FIFO will make the Atmel device easier to use than the RFM12B. Not easier to port, but easier to use in my application code.
But, and this is a big but, I am worried about the time needed to debug the code. Debugging wireless is hard. Of course, I don't have to debug it before the paper design is due in
Yes, that's right, 10% of my design time gone, and I haven't even made a decision on the wireless solution.
I'm going to move on to other parts of the system. Design and code those, then see how much time is left before the deadline. I have a feeling that I'll have to go with Raven modules due to time constraints.