FPGA’s are something I have wanted to venture into for a while now. The problem is their architecture is so different from what I am used to ( micro-controllers ) that I needed an interesting enough project to hold my interest through the learning. It was also important for me to find a project that couldn’t be done with technologies that I already know. Lastly (hopefully) the project I chose would be easy enough to accomplish without too much frustration.
After seeing the mikeselectricstuff series on driving the iPod nano displays I have chosen to attempt to drive one of these displays. I’ve come up with a few projects that these would be useful in. Since the display needs a LVDS clock and data signal an FPGA is particularly suited to driving them. While to get a decent refresh rate they will need to be driven quickly they will function at lower clock speeds for testing.
A lot of the FPGA blogs/forums/etc I have come across are describe FPGAs very simplicity, down at the gate level. the other extreme being large prebuilt blocks with not a lot of information on how to piece them together. My goal is going to be somewhere inbetween, describing how to use the tools and modules available to do a particular task.