[Oberon] Re (2): Updated RiskFive FOM schematics

Skulski, Wojciech skulski at pas.rochester.edu
Tue Jan 16 21:37:18 CET 2018

Peter E. wrote:

> Questions are inescapable.  Not intended to be critical or offensive.

> Will hardware remain available?  How much effort will be necessary to adapt
> firmware and software to changes in hardware?
> If RiskFive is far more powerful than I
> need but has a mean time to failure of five years and a compatible
> replacement will not be available in five years, is it a good basis
> for a workstation?

These are excellent questions. To give you my perspective, I am trying to solve my immediate problem in data acquisition. The possible Oberon application is a byproduct, even though the board was heavily tweaked towards Oberon. (Things like PS/2, HDMI controller, or the radio module which I  added yesterday). Nevertheless, Oberon cannot be my main motivation. If the community does not take this board, I still have a good use for it.  

Concerning the future, Xilinx will keep the parts around for about a decade. They just extended the Spartan-6 lifetime by about ten years. I expect Artix to be available for about this long as well. The boards can still be manufactured in five or even ten years. This gives us enough time to design a subsequent platform in a couple years from now.

At some point in not too distant future I plan to release the design files. Not now, because the design is still preliminary, but once the dust settles, I plan to release. These days open hardware is becoming a norm rather than an exception, so I will follow the suit. Open hardware is generally favored by those who are concerned about the future. 

I hope I answered some of your questions.


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