FTDI's platform incorporates all of the hardware,
software and documentation needed for â€˜out-of-the-box' FPGA development. The
hardware comprises a compact development module incorporating an Altera
EP2C5F256C8N Cyclone-II FPGA and an FTDI FT2232H USB-to-multi-purpose UART/FIFO
IC. One channel of the FT2232H is utilised for FPGA-to-PC communications and
supports data transfer speeds of up to 40 Mbyte/s. The second channel of the
FT2232H is used to configure and reconfigure the FPGA over USB. USB programming
eliminates the need for Flash configuration memory normally required to
configure SRAM-based FPGAs.
The Morph-IC-II features up to 80 general
purpose I/O (GPIO) lines.
USB software interfacing is provided via FTDI's royalty-free drivers and sample FPGA
reference designs help to speed prototyping and further reduce development
times. The FPGA can be programmed and configured using Altera's Quartus II
development software, which is available as a free download from the Altera
Altera's EP2C5F256C8N FPGA offers 4,608
embedded FPGA logic elements (LEs) and 26 embedded logic RAM elements for the
implementation of LSI and entry-level VLSI (very large scale integration)
designs with up to 80,000 gates and 119 Kbits of RAM. The FTDI FT2232H IC
offers USB-to-UART and USB-to-high-speed FIFO options for general-purpose
communications with PC application software. The FT2232H also features a Multi
Protocol Synchronous Serial Engine (MPSSE); a configurable serial controller
that allows designers to implement JTAG, SPI, I2C or other application-specific
Morph-IC-II is supplied with FTDI's VCP
(Virtual COM port) and D2XX Microsoft Windows and Linux USB drivers,
eliminating the need for additional driver development for most applications.
VCP drivers make the USB device appear to the PC as an additional COM port,
enabling application software to access the USB device in the same way as it
would access a standard port. The D2XX drivers, which offer direct access to
the USB device through a DLL, provide an API-based interface for developers to
interact with the hardware using C/C++, C#, Visual Basic, Embarcadero Delphi
and National Instruments LabVIEW.
The fun factor continues to draw developers to Linux. This open-source system continues to succeed in the market and in the hearts and minds of developers. Design News will delve into this territory with next week's Continuing Education Class titled, “Introduction to Linux Device Drivers.”
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.