iCESugar-nano is a $19 iCE40LP1k FPGA board with 3x PMOD connectors

iCESugar-nano FPGA board

Muse Lab’s iCESugar-nano is a tiny FPGA board based on Lattice Semi iCE40LP1K-CM36 programmable via its USB-C port through on-board iCELink debugger, and exposing I/Os for three standard PMOD connectors. The board is fully supported by Yosys open-source toolchain ( Yosys+ nextpnr + IceStorm), and the onboard debugger supports drag-and-drop programming so that you can just drag the FPGA bitstream into the virtual disk to program it through a USB Type-C cable. iCESugar-nano specifications: FPGA – Lattice Semi iCE40LP1k FPGA with 1280 LUT/8KB SRAM/PLL Storage – 2MB SPI flash (W25Q16) USB – 1x USB Type-C port for power and programming Expansion – 14x usable IOs with 1x 12-pin PMOD connectors and 2x 6-pin PMOD connectors Debugging – On-board iCELink debugger based on Arm Mbed DAPLink Misc – Adjustable clock (8/12/36/72MHz), LED Power Supply – 5V via USB-C port Dimensions – 3.9 x 1.8 cm Documentation, schematic PDF, links to tools, […]

Home Assistant gives new life to Insteon Smart Home products following Smartlabs bankruptcy

Insteon Home Assistant

Smartlabs used to sell Insteon Smart Home products, but the company is now in bankruptcy proceedings, its cloud has been turned off, and users have reported their products not working since April 14. Going to Insteon website confirms the problem: …the company engaged in a sales process in November, 2021. The goal was to find a parent for the company and continue to invest in new products and the technology. The process resulted in several interested parties and a sale was expected to be realized in the March timeframe. Unfortunately, that sale did not materialize. Consequently, the company was assigned to a financial services firm in March to optimize the assets of the company. IoT and Smart Home products going offline are nothing new, either because the company is going bankrupt or the product is not profitable anymore. It happens to me with Weloop Hey 3S smartwatch which I still […]

Intel releases SDK for Cortex-M7 PSE found in Elkhart Lake processors

Intel PSE firmware SDK

Elkhart Lake processors integrate the Intel Programmable Services Engine (Intel PSE) offload engine for IoT workloads powered by an Arm Cortex-M7 microcontroller that handles real-time IO control using GPIO, I2C, and/or UART interfaces, and supports functions such as remote, out-of-band device management, network proxy, embedded controller, and sensor hub. Until now the firmware was only provided as a closed-source binary, and Coreboot developers published an open letter to open the source code for the PSE firmware last December, and it’s been successful with Intel releasing the Intel PSE SDK based on Zephyr OS. The SDK combines open-source components (code samples, services, etc…) released under a permissive Apache 2.0 license (“License A”), and closed-source libraries and tools released under an Intel license (“License B”) allowing the redistribution and use in binary form, without modification. You’ll find everything on Github including documentation explaining how to get started with the Zephyr SDK, the […]

NVIDIA NVDLA AI accelerator driver submitted to mainline Linux

NVDLA

A large patchset has been submitted to mainline Linux for NVIDIA NVDLA AI accelerator Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) driver, accompanied by an open-source user mode driver. The NVDLA (NVIDIA Deep Learning Accelerator) can be found in recent Jetson modules such as Jetson AGX Xavier and Jetson AGX Orin, and since NVDLA was made open-source hardware in 2017, it can also be integrated into third-party SoCs such as StarFive JH7100 Vision SoC and Allwinner V831 processor. I actually assumed everything was open-source already since we were told that NVDLA was a “complete solution with Verilog and C-model for the chip, Linux drivers, test suites, kernel- and user-mode software, and software development tools all available on Github’s NVDLA account.” and the inference compiler was open-sourced in September 2019. But apparently not, as developer Cai Huoqing submitted a patchset with 23 files changed, 13243 insertions, and the following short description: The NVIDIA Deep […]

ESP USB Bridge project converts ESP32-S2 or ESP32-S3 into a USB to UART/JTAG chip

ESP USB Bridge UART & JTAG

Espressif’s ESP USB Bridge is a project based on the ESP-IDF that leverages ESP32-S2 or ESP32-S3 USB interface to use the board as a USB to UART or USB to JTAG debug board. It can serve as a substitute for USB to TTL debug boards based on CH340 or CP2104 for instance, be used with OpenOCD in JTAG bridge mode, and also flash UF2 firmware file to the target board. As just mentioned, there are three main use cases: Serial bridge mode with a terminal program or a firmware flashing tool like esptool. In that case, it just works like your typical USB to TTL debug board JTAG bridge mode for JTAG debugging with OpenOCD, and if the target board is based on ESP32, you can use openocd-esp32 project Mass storage device where the board can be accessed by a file manager on the host computer. One of the specific […]

Arduino releases secure bootloader based on MCUboot

Arduino MCUboot

Arduino has released a new bootloader based on MCUBoot to increase the range of features and firmware safety of Arduino products, with the first release targetting STM32H7 based Arduino Portenta and Nicla Vision boards from the Arduino Pro family. The release focuses on Arduino Mbed OS-based boards, but MCUboot is OS agnostic, and should also work with Zephyr, Nuttx, and Apache mynewt. The company has also made sure that the transition is easy and reused the existing OTA firmware upgrade process in place on Arduino boards. MCUboot Arduino highlights: Signed and encrypted updates – MCUboot has support for encrypting/decrypting images on-the-fly while upgrading. It will also check if the computed signature is matching the one embedded in the image before booting a sketch. Confirm or revert updates – After an update, the new Sketch can update the content of the flash at runtime to mark itself as OK. If everything […]

SmartKnob View is a DIY haptic input knob with WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity

SmartKnob View

Soon after writing about RoenDi rotary encoder with a built-in color display, readers pointed me to SmartKnob View, a similar-looking project but featuring an ESP32 module for WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity, plus software-configurable end-stops and virtual detents. The latter is enabled through a brushless gimbal motor paired with a magnetic encoder to provide closed-loop torque feedback control. Just like RoenDi, SmartKnob View comes with a 240×240 round color display but adds tactile feedback so you can change the menu when pressing the display. SmartKnob View specifications: Wireless module – LilyGO Tmicro32 Plys based on ESP32-PICO-V3-02 WiFi and Bluetooth LE SoC (May be changed to ESP32-S3-MINI-1 to enable USB HID support, once Arduino core supports it) Display – GC9A01 1.28-inch 240×240 round LCD covered by a 39.5mm watch glass on rotor Motor – BLDC gimbal motor, with a hollow shaft for mechanically & electrically connecting the LCD USB – 1x USB […]

Antmicro releases open-source hardware Snapdragon 845 baseboard designed with KiCad

open-source hardware snapdragon 845 baseboard

Antmicro team has released an open-source hardware baseboard for Quectel SA800U-WF System-on-Module powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 octa-core processor, which they designed with KiCad open-source EDA tool. The baseboard supports NVMe storage and offers Micro HDMI and MIPI DSI video interfaces, Gigabit Ethernet with PoE support, USB 3.1 Type-C interfaces, and other I/Os, plus three separate power inputs. The company expects the design to serve as a starting point for building portable smart assistants, kiosks, VR/AR or smart screens, and more. Antmicro Snapdragon 845 baseboard specifications: Supported system-on-module – Quectel SA800U-WF with: SoC – Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 octa-core Kryo 385 processor (4x Cortex A75 cores + 4x Cortex-A55 cores), Adreno 630 GPU, Hexagon 685 DSP, 4K H.265/H.264 video decoding and encoding System Memory – 4 GB LPDDR4X Storage – 64 GB UFS storage 802.11b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi 5 2×2 MIMO and Bluetooth 5.0 module Board-to-board connector for connection to baseboard Dimensions – […]