RetroBSD

2.11BSD operating system for microcontrollers
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 1:35 pm 
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I have finally been given the go-ahead to blab about what I have been doing for the past few months.

4D Systems approached me and asked me to assist in the design and production of a new PIC32 based TFT screen, and here's the results:
Attachment:
picadillo.jpg
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I'm really quite pleased with what we ended up with. At the core it's a MAX32, but with the footprint of an UNO32 and a TFT screen (nice high res 320x480) connected to the Parallel Master Port (so it's nice and fast).

The first boards are now off the production line any day now, and they're taking orders for them on their website, priced $99.00

http://www.4dsystems.com.au/product/PICadillo_35T/

It's fully supported by UECIDE (of course), and the next release of MPIDE will also have support for it.

Programming the TFT is fairly easy, as my powerful TFT library has been especially modified to work with it. I am also working on supporting the widget files (.gci and .dat) from 4D Systems Visi Genie, so crafting good looking GUIs is a doddle.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 6:14 pm 
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Hi Matt,

Nice design.

Real pic32 stuff :).

If I had a bigger toy fund, I'd offer to help out :).

Looks nice on their/your website.

Wiz


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 6:40 pm 
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Wow, so impressive board. I will order one to play with. Do you have a RetroBSD driver for the screen?

Shipping is a bit pricy. Any discounts?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:02 pm 
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I don't have a TFT driver written yet, but I will certainly be looking at writing one. Should be simple enough to build. It'll be nice to have the console displayed on it with maybe a PS/2 keyboard connected to the SPI port...

Unfortunately I have no say on shipping or any pricing at all. I'm just the brains that made it work ;)

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:19 pm 
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Well, OK: let's consider it as a support for the promising project. :)

For PS/2 keyboard, I have a standalone example based on Maximite sources. It can be used as a starting point: https://code.google.com/p/vak-opensource/source/browse/trunk/microcontrollers/maximite-console/keyboard.c


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:24 pm 
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I was just going to rip off the Arduino PS2Keyboard library ;)

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 9:22 pm 
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Why do you need PS/2 keyboard?? You have got the touch display there.. :P

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 11:42 pm 
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I have grown weary of typing on my phone. I want a real keyboard ;)

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 11:46 pm 
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It's somewhat tricky to use emg from touchscreen. :)


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 7:05 am 
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..you need 1 button for writing a text :P
PS: I got such tft display 3y back, it is 16bit only, so I cannot connect it to my systems easily (all 512H).
I did with 1284p and it worked nice (but about 25 wires needed). Unless you plan to watch video on it, the SPI or 8bit interface would work nice with retrobsd.
A pity they use the old 795 there, the 470 or MZ would be a better choice I think. Also a ramdisk is something I miss :)
But good as an industrial module. Expensive however. BBB costs 56E (incl VAT) here, the display may cost $25 on the ebay..

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:40 am 
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Just got the parcel from 4d systems. "Turning technology into art" - nice slogan. Pretty demo preinstalled. As I understand, it has 12Mhz primary crystal, and also secondary 32.768kHz crystal installed. Combined with Funduino joystick shield, it might serve as a good game platform.

Does anybody have a reaady-to-run kernel config for it?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 5:22 am 
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I've added a kernel configuration for PICadillo-35T board: see commit https://github.com/RetroBSD/retrobsd/commit/1c4e56236359ab824dff7a7a7bc4fc43339a077d.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 7:56 am 
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Nice one. I've not had any time to play with Retro on it yet, and I am out all day today, but I'll try and have a play tonight when I get home.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2014 10:08 pm 
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Attachment:
4DProducts-Banner10%off.jpg
4DProducts-Banner10%off.jpg [ 64.13 KiB | Viewed 425603 times ]

Guys! I have managed to wangle you all 10% off all 4D Systems' products!

This is to celebrate the release of the PICadillo-35T, and the offer lasts until the end of this month! So, if there's something you always wanted from them (like a PICadillo!!!!) now is the time to buy it!

All you need is the discount code: MAJENKO10 (that's makenko - one - zero) and you'll get 10% off everything!

http://4dsystems.com.au
Attachment:
PICadillo35T-Banner10%off.jpg
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 2:14 pm 
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Worthy of a photograph I think:
Attachment:
R.jpg
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No input device yet ;)

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 11:53 am 
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Nice! I wish I could do that on the Maximite. Too little RAM to drive a VGA display via DMA. :(


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 4:49 pm 
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I'm sure a man of your talents could manage it...

You're just streaming 1 line at a time out through SPI using DMA, so how about if you only held one line of screen data in memory at a time, and calculated it from the font data and an 80x24 array of characters? Could that be done fast enough during the horizontal blanking / porch period?

Or how about 2 lines? One that's currently being streamed out, and one that's being built up from the font data? Ping-pong the buffers.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 5:12 pm 
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A slight change of font, and we get the full 80 columns. It's also 40 lines high, which is a bonus - but I need to sort out the terminal type to use the extra lines ;)

Here it is running emg with the command:
Code:
# emg /etc/rc >/dev/ttyTFT0

so control is still through the serial terminal.
Attachment:
emg.jpg
emg.jpg [ 1.2 MiB | Viewed 425080 times ]

You do get a cursor now though :twisted:

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 8:10 pm 
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I have now added a second character device to the driver - /dev/tftin0 - which acts like a keyboard for the TFT. Send it characters and it is as if you had sent those characters on a keyboard.

Eventually you should be able to attach it to a real keyboard device by tying two devices together (eg "cat /dev/ps2keyboard >/dev/tftin0")

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 10:45 pm 
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majenko wrote:
You're just streaming 1 line at a time out through SPI using DMA, so how about if you only held one line of screen data in memory at a time, and calculated it from the font data and an 80x24 array of characters? Could that be done fast enough during the horizontal blanking / porch period?

Or how about 2 lines? One that's currently being streamed out, and one that's being built up from the font data? Ping-pong the buffers.


The idea is viable, but without doing the math and without trying, I don't know if it's actually doable.
But that would only give me text, whereas I'd like to be able to draw graphics. Text only is not much fun.


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