CELF conference feedback

Ron K. Jeffries rjeffries at gmail.com
Tue Nov 2 12:23:31 EDT 2010


What affected your decision to use
LM32 core in lieu of Leon3 in Milkymist.

Ron K. Jeffries

On Tue, Nov 2, 2010 at 04:02, Sébastien Bourdeauducq
<sebastien.bourdeauducq at lekernel.net> wrote:
> Le Tue, 02 Nov 2010 10:38:15 +0000,
> "Phil Endecott" <spam_from_qihw at chezphil.org> a écrit :
>> > Were you able to intro Milkymist to some people thanks to
>> > the Milkymist sticker?
>> Not really.  Although the milkymist sticker does have a URL, it only
>> says "interactive VJ station", and not "copyleft FPGA CPU".
> OTOH a copyleft FPGA CPU/SoC without an application and product already
> using and demonstrating it seems not to go very far. See OpenRISC for an
> example (it also sucks technically, but nevertheless it should be good
> enough to make simple things like arduinos) or LEON3 (it's much better
> than OpenRISC, but almost no one is using it except researchers). As
> you said, end user functionality is what attracts people.
> Of course, they are companies which have been successful with IP cores
> only, but:
> 1. I do not believe in the service-based free software business model
> (which is what a "copyleft IP core" company would use). Companies using
> it are little more than IT outsourcing businesses, doing whatever some
> other company tells them to (i.e. little freedom to innovate).
> 2. The ASIC business has a strong culture of secrecy and heavy legal
> protection, which does not seem very compatible with copyleft. This is
> why hardware modules are pedantically called "IP cores" while software
> modules are simply called "libraries".
> Bottom line: I think doing everything from RTL (or below) to product is
> a good thing. Back to the original subject, perhaps we simply should
> make different stickers depending on what people we give them to :)
> S.
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