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Flextronics demos open source chips
No strings attached
Contract manufacturer Flextronics has been demonstrating a board based on open source processor technology. The demonstration system-on-a-chip uses the OpenRisc 1200 processor core based on the OpenCores project and Flextronics is making reference boards available to its ASIC customers. The SOC integrates Ethernet and PCI bus interfaces.
The world isn't short of open processors. The SPARC instruction set is am IEEE specification and the guardian body, SPARC International, makes technical documentation available for free and asks only a $99 fee for the compliance badge. LEON, GPL implementation of a SPARC 8 processor was created at the European Space Agency three years ago. A history of ESA's relationship with SPARC can be found here.
Back in August, EE Times reported that a co-founder of OpenCores, Jamil Khatib, had established a "virtual laboratory and design center", Handsa Arabia to promote projects based on the cores. The first two projects include an Arabic Linux PDA, OFOQ, and a Bluetooth chip.
Curious hardware hackers in the Bay Area can see a demonstration in Mountain View at 7pm on Monday. ®