Software Defines Everything #Xilinx_HasDecember 4, 2018
Hardware engineers designed hardware, and software engineers wrote software.
If they were designing with FPGAs, they became even more like software engineers.
These devices (like Xilinx Zynq and Altera SoC FPGAs) blur the lines between hardware design and software design so thoroughly that a whole new approach to development tools is required.
The part of the design that’s left for us – our special value-added part – is mostly software design.
For the FPGA companies designing these amazing chips, this presents a new problem.
What is needed is an entirely new, software-centric design environment that encapsulates the complexities of hardware development and brings front-and-center the sophisticated software development tools required to implement applications on these unbelievably complex heterogeneous multiprocessing devices.
Of course, SDSoC includes the normal things we’d expect in an embedded software development environment, such as compilers and debuggers with the special features we need to debug embedded software in a parallel heterogeneous multi-processing environment.
One of the most important capabilities of an application like this on a chip is the ability to profile the application and do the software/hardware partitioning as well as the allocation of parts of the application to various types of processing elements.
Xilinx has worked to create what they call an “ASSP-like programming experience.” Meaning, even software developers with no hardware expertise can work productively developing applications for Zynq with SDSoC.
With these, you can call what seem to be normal software functions and be taking advantage of optimized, power-efficient, high-performance hardware functions.
The Web Edition is the free version of Xilinx ISE, that can be downloaded and used for no charge. It provides synthesis and programming for a limited number of Xilinx devices. In particular, devices with a large number of I/O pins and large gate matrices are disabled.
Xilinx, Inc. (/ˈzaɪlɪŋks/ ZY-links) is an American technology company, primarily a supplier of programmable logic devices. It is known as t…