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Project update 7 of 60
Yes…we’re alive. :) Apologies for the radio silence - things have been a bit hectic since the end of the campaign, but rest assured we’ve been hard at work keeping things on track. And we do have some exciting updates…
For starters, thank you all SO MUCH for helping make the snickerdoodle campaign a success! Your excitement, words of encouragement, and - of course - your backing have made this whole project infinitely rewarding and worthwhile.
All told, a little over 650 snickerdoodles were preordered during the campaign, along with with a few hundred baseboards and a whole bunch of SD cards and jumpers and heat sinks (oh my!). Needless to say, some very exciting times lie ahead…
Hardware update: this week we were able (call in a whole lot of favors) to secure the last of the hard-to-get parts for our Alpha build. For the folks in the Alpha program, we’re still on track to get boards in house by the end of the month; we will provide more scheduling updates over the next couple weeks. We’re looking forward to seeing the forum light up and expect a whole bunch of buzz to come out of the Alpha program…
On a side note: if there are any communities or forums you’d like to point us towards for inspiration (e.g. established communities that have either impressed or disappointed you), we’ll start a thread in the existing forum for you to chime in on so we can make sure that gets done the “right way."
And in case you missed it…snickerdoodle has joined her friends piSmasher and giggleBits and now has schematics posted for the world to see! Note: the final production schematics may change as a result of any issues that arise during testing.
Software update: our software team (i.e. Bush) has been hammering on Linux day in and day out and we’re pleased to announce that Ubuntu is now fully booting…WITH WIRELESS…on our development platform! Snappy, ROS, and more goodness soon to follow. And, as always, we’ll be posting all the source code and documentation to GitHub as soon as bring up is complete.
Oh, and speaking of software…something pretty friggin exciting happened last week: in an awesomely surprising twist, Xilinx announced their HLx software suite - namely the tool that can take C code in and spit RTL code (i.e. FPGA IP blocks) out the other end - totally free! So not only is this (previously) multi-thousand dollar software package now free to all snickerdoodlers (note: both snickerdoodle Zynq parts are covered), but gone are the days of worrying about Vivado vouchers as well.
We’ll be posting more info, videos etc. on all this in the near future, but in the meantime, you should definitely check it out (while you’re sitting eagerly by the door waiting for your snickerdoodle to arrive). ;)
That about wraps it up for now. One final thing before we go: our friend Russell of Nandland fame has a great site for educating people about all things FPGA. Covered are things like FPGA basics, the differences between VHDL and Verilog, and tutorials and examples of each. You can check it out at www.nandland.com. And while you’re there, don’t miss his newly launched Kickstarter campaign (a cool little Lattice dev board).
Until next time, ‘doodlerinos (we promise the updates will be more frequent going forward)!
Cousins, Weatherbee, and Bush
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