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#1897
Re:Arduino ? I wonder ... (just thoughts) 3 Years, 7 Months ago Karma: 2
Just to stir the pot, so to speak, an interesting application of the Arduino platform in an industrial environment:

http://paulfurley.com/arduino-isnt-just-for-hackers/
MK (User)
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#1895
Re:Arduino ? I wonder ... (just thoughts) 3 Years, 7 Months ago Karma: 2
Adrian Wallaschek wrote:


I feel a bit like watching the funeral of my childhood hero. Ask a person today: heard of ARM? Yup cool! What about Z80? Answer: another new boy-group?



I've been on these forums from the time they started more than three years ago I think. The sort of discussions that are happening in this thread have been going on for all this time with occasional responses from Zilog. Sometimes, discussion just stops in mid stream.

The product line gets updates but they are all generally small changes rather than something new. The Z51F is the Zilog flavour of an established processor. I would think that in the eZ8/ ZNEO space, they have a product that could be made competitive with the AVR line with some tweaks (e.g. single cycle execution, USB connectivity) and some cost-effective evaluation kits but not much seems to happen. I'm still waiting to see what the new Z8F6482 will have.

I am hoping that maybe, just maybe, the Samsung acquisition with inject enough design talent into Zilog to rejuvenate the product line and get something going again.
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#1893
Re:Arduino ? I wonder ... (just thoughts) 3 Years, 7 Months ago Karma: 0
Jim, you are right, and looking e.g. at the freescale board we all get demonstrated how it works:

They've done THEIR thing ... without leaving the others alone: 2 rows of connectors, the outer is Arduino compatible. BRight! This is the way it works and if the board would not cost 13$ but 20$ and for this offer 512kB RAM or more, I'd buy 10 without further thinking and run an emulator for Z80/68000k or anything on it.

As this discussion is already running for a while, without a Zilog person being in ... and the only way out I see is other producers, I'll first continue my alternative ways.

I follow two tracks. One ... forget about HW Z80 for a while and write a Z180 emulator capable to be compiled with Arduino or any other IDE. Regrettably those that exist by now require more or less massive OS around them. This will then emulate the interface to the Arduino's HW.

Second track: I build a board for classic Z80 (those that I can solder manually) and put it behind SPI. This can interface to any Microcontroller to get peripherals and would even run interfaced to an Apple II e.g. or a PC or a Raspi. Just to cover the Nostalgic part.

Both allow to do the things I want to do, Zilog appers to prefer to sit in their shell and concentrate on whatever it is they do. Apparantly the times they want to do things better ... are over? Let them sleep don't wake them up!

Having the Zilog as a slave-CPU under an Atmel or some ARM is more ... realistic it seems.
The ARMs are at 100MHz now and offer USB and everything.

I feel a bit like watching the funeral of my childhood hero. Ask a person today: heard of ARM? Yup cool! What about Z80? Answer: another new boy-group?

We'll see ...

C U guys and thanks for the recent pointer to some thrilling products!
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#1892
Re:Arduino ? I wonder ... (just thoughts) 3 Years, 7 Months ago Karma: 2
Jim Granville wrote:

Just running cp/m is not enough, the device also needs a modern Debug pathway.

A USB device like SiLabs CP2105 could allow that, as it has two Serial pathways, to one USB connector.

I like the tiny-companion uC idea of the cp/m 50, as that could offer CP2105 <-> Debug, and also contain an emergency boot image, so an oops-erased Flash device could be restored.

ie That tiny-companion uC, needs to bundle all the functions of the currently separate product, the Zilog USB SMART CABLE,
(that means Zilog would need to co-operate on such an effort)

[/quote]

I have only seen one attempt at providing an alternative to the Zilog USB smart cable. This is the "dbgutils for eZ8" open-source project on Sourceforge which implements all the Zilog debug commands via serial port into the debug pins on the eZ8 devices. It hasn't been updated since 2008. I only see the smart cable as a lock-in mechanism for the Zilog IDE. There must be proprietary commands that go from the IDE to the smart cable processor which then turns them back into the documented serial debug commands.

As for companion uCs, I have seen a few projects for Z80s and eZ80s that use either an AVR or an eZ8 to bootstrap the main processor. I think it would work well to use one with something like the eZ80.
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#1891
Re:Arduino ? I wonder ... (just thoughts) 3 Years, 7 Months ago Karma: 2
Adrian Wallaschek wrote:

@Jim well, there are many options for such, but honestly, I would think (haven't looked it up) that Zilog has documented options to cover the debug. I'd make it just an additional plug. Beyond the Standard Arduino connectors, others may exist. I'd prefer to keep the board as check as possible. My first thought would be on development and features. With a CP/M setup, even software can help on debugging.


Debug included is the new standard, so needs to be included in any new design.

For some examples of Board with Debug included, look at

coocox.org/Cookie/Cookie_Nuvoton.html

www.freescale.com/webapp/sps/site/prod_s....jsp?code=FRDM-KL25Z

and of course...

www.zilog.com/components/com_product/blo...m/104_1355877949.jpg

Zilog do have reasonable info on the base level ZDI, but it needs to be USB-SW compatible with the USB -> debug.
ie The companies above are now including their Debug, into chips on the boards.
and those boards cost less than the Debug-link alone, from Zilog.

It is ok if the separate Zilog USB SMART CABLE has more features, but the on-board debug needs to be functional to a Step/Break/Watch level.
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#1890
Re:Arduino ? I wonder ... (just thoughts) 3 Years, 7 Months ago Karma: 0
@MK you are perfectly right about the drive behind Arduino, but since then, producers have adopted the concept. Zilog could just do the same, and then we see how far we get.

@Jim well, there are many options for such, but honestly, I would think (haven't looked it up) that Zilog has documented options to cover the debug. I'd make it just an additional plug. Beyond the Standard Arduino connectors, others may exist. I'd prefer to keep the board as check as possible. My first thought would be on development and features. With a CP/M setup, even software can help on debugging.
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