Things have slowed here, not due to a lack of interest, but rather because Marty has spent much of 2004 fighting off an early stage of pancreatic cancer. Earlier this year the surgeons at the University of Alabama, Birmingham (UAB) Hospital performed a Whipple procedure, from which he has pretty much recovered, and now he is undergoing radiation and chemotherapy simultaneously. Once that is complete, more chemtherapy alone is highly probable. Until he recovers, there will likely be little posted here.
Author Archives: Marty
FreeIO.org Major Changes
The focus of this site will transition to strictly I/O projects. Due to the parts costs and logistics involved in developing processor boards, the Toast board will be the last one of those. The next projects will not interface directly to computer internals. The ISA bus is dead, the PCI bus is changing, and choosing any of these limits the target platform to a system which uses them. Thus the next series of projects will interface to something far more common, that being the USB interface. The next series of projects will be small boards to test and develop the USB interface tools required to build larger boards. The intent is to develop a standard drop-in USB interface that I can build upon.
Toast ColdFire Controller Board Developments
Several developers are working with the FreeIO.org Toast board. The big problem is the difficulty and expense involved with hand building the boards from parts built in small quantities. There are still plans to design a PC/104 form factor version of the Toast board, although this will not be done until there a consensus that the electronic design is completely correct.
The FreeIO.org site has been moved from Interland to Can-Host.com. Some dns servers have been slow to update, and there may have been a few emails bounced or lost during the changeover. If you have emailed one of us and not received an answer, please resend the email.
Toast ColdFire Controller Board Version 1.01
Toast version 1.01 is ready for release and will be posted shortly. The only physical change to the board layout is the new footprint for U10, to improve manufacturability. Four of the five boards from the first batch have been sent out to developers and users, and feedback will be incorporated in version 1.02. So far, there have been no schematic changes required.
Toast ColdFire Controller Board Test and Software Progress
Two prototypes of the Toast ColdFire Control Board have been built, and preliminary hardware tests are complete. The BDM port works and the flash memory can be programmed through that port using the P&E Micro software and BDM cable. The pictures have been updated to show the serial number 2 prototype, which has two ethernet controllers on it. This particular prototype is being sent off this week to Andreas Schuldei who has graciously volunteered to help with porting uClinux to the board. There will be minor changes to the VHDL code appearing this week in order to support two ethernet controllers. The link is on the Toast ColdFire Controller Board page.