[Oberon] Oberon System on the FPGA

Bill Buzzell captbill279 at gmail.com
Sun Nov 9 00:30:25 CET 2014

Hi Chris,

>>I do not need the OS or a development system on my target (e.g. FPGA)
hardware - my >>requirements are much less ambitious. I just need to be
able to work with Oberon on the >>FPGA RISC5 processor in the same way that
I work with the Cortex-M3/M4 development >>boards using Astrobe. I use an
editor and cross-compiler on the PC to develop the code, >>upload it to
board via a serial link and then communicate with the target via a terminal
>>emulator on the PC.

Thanks, this is what I am trying to sort out. What does a development
system look like vs. a "target"? What you say is good news and we can use
our standard development tools and simply crosscompile/upload to the mc.

In fact, I am considering a few components for Lazarus/Freepascal with some
simple features:


My hope is to inherit from the standard Tbutton and add a simple "code gen"
property where the properties of the component generates the Astrobe Oberon
code based upon your component properties of your "project". Nothing fancy,
just simple text routines to write out some template code and paste to the
clipboard when I double click the component.This way you can design in your
preferred environment and leverage it as a good "master project". Then you
program in Astrobe and use the generated code from the controls to populate
the mc with it's corresponding procedures/pin settings etc. Finally, you do
your "core" programming on Astrobe, alt-tab-paste the code. Of coarse, the
same thing will work in C++, BlackBox or any standard OOP language as well
as your target (FPGA, microcontroller).

To put it more visually, I want to be able to set up a few GUI knobs,
double click the knobs (in design time) and spit out the pertinent Astrobe
supporting code for a "knob" to the clipboard. Alt-tab to Astrobe IDE and
paste the code there. Two for one plus a good way to manage "globally" from
my trusted environment. A nice closed-loop setup:


>>My requirement for the target executables is 'hard real-time' direct
operation of hardware >>devices combined with the predictability,
reliability and maintainability of Oberon software. >>This is possible with
the ARM boards. However, what you cannot do, but can do with the >>FPGA
boards is extend the hardware capabilities either by adding to the
instruction set or by >>using Verilog to program the hardware. The 'FPGA
for Fun' website is a good eye-opener >>for some of the possibilities:

Very interesting site. What I think is neat/promising with the FPGA is you
can actually implement, in hardware, the Bresenham line algorithm for
example. Or how about a hard-wired window manager? All the necessary code,
previously done in software, can possibly now be embedded as hardware.
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