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Re: If you really want Free firmware...

On Tue, Dec 14, 2004 at 11:17:24AM +0100, Tollef Fog Heen wrote:
> * Kenneth Pronovici 
> | I think what you're forgetting (or at least ignoring) is that designing
> | hardware is not exactly like designing software.  The process is
> | similar, yes, but it's not an apples-to-apples comparison.  At the
> | least, this is because testing your hardware "implementation" is not
> | "free" (as in beer).   Nor am I aware of many free (or even cheap)
> | hardware development tools or "environments".
> You can get microcontroller development boards with a handfull of ICs
> off atmel for around 30-40 euros.  Etching 12x8cm boards costs you a
> couple of Euros and you can get a lot done without going that far,
> even, but just soldering stuff.  Not free, but cheap enough that «it's
> too expensive» isn't a real argument.
> FPGA equipment is on the same magnitude of cost -- still a bit off
> «thousands of dollars»

But none of that is on the same scale. You can't do highly complicated
hardware designs with an 8-bit micro or the type of FPGA you can solder
at home. You can (and do) do highly complicated software though.

That FPGA equipment doesn't have free development tools, btw.

Hamish Moffatt VK3SB <hamish@debian.org> <hamish@cloud.net.au>

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