[Oberon] Background Processing for "Instrument" control using Native Oberon / Bluebottle

Alexander Hofmann alexander.hofmann at physik.uni-augsburg.de
Mon Jul 22 16:42:22 CEST 2013

Hi, there.

Although I've known the Oberon System (and Language) and it's Siblings
for quite some time now (should be 18 Years by now), my knowledge of the
System is still very limited.

At the moment, I'm trying to find an adequate system to control a bunch
of old 16Bit ISA D/A and A/D cards (e.g.
http://accesio.com/go.cgi?p=../isa/da16_16.html). I'm not using these in
any production or "real" lab environment, just for some experiments at
home. Until now I'm controlling the cards using LabView. The problem is,
they don't have any buffer memory - any sort of "waveform" requires
constant updates on the part of the software. Of course, the cards are
not meant to be used for such a purpose - but I'm curious if it's possible.

So, here comes the question to the Oberon specialists: is it possible to
use Native Oberon (my favorite in this case) or Bluebottle to create
some "real time"-ish control software for these cards?
I used Oberon a view years ago to control some stepper motors, but in
these days I modified the Oberon-Loop to accomplish
background-processing, which of course lead to glitches and movement
errors of the motors when interrupts were generated (Keyboard, Mouse
etc.). So this is not the right way to do this.

Bluebottle, with it's active objects seems more suited, but as far as I
know, the Bluebottle system will threat all active objects equal (no
priority classes?), is this correct?

If the sample given with the D/A-Cards is to specific, take my question
as "Is it possible to do some kind of multi-task real-time processing
with Oberon and/or Bluebottle?"

The reason why I'm not trying to do this with any other/existing
realtime OS is, that I really like the "Spirit of simplicity" in the
system, the Oberon language is clean and understandable, and the
Gadget-Based GUI of the Oberon-System can be easily reprogrammed without
the need to change code, the ideal base for any lab environment! Using
LabView's Realtime Module is also very expensive - nothing to experiment
with at home, and setting up e.g. WinCe or QNX is difficult, and these
to are not OpenSource.

Thanks in Advance,

Alexander Hofmann

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