Persistence (bloody mindedness) Pays Off

Well, I loaded the Windoze version in to a VM. This was instructive in that Diamond looks almost as bad in the Tonka Toy 10 as Linux. So I kept poking at the app and finally found the very unintuitive way to get it to compile. I then poked at the programmer for about an hour and got it to do something other than throw meaningless and useless errors referencing Windows–I got it to flash the MachXOLF Starter Kit. Er… success…? Okay, yeah it works.

Lemme make a guess, Lattice. Have you noticed a surge in sales of the ICE40 line? Ya know the line that the open source community has reversed the bitstream of. People can use IceStorm (really I mean icestorm, arachne, yosys et al) on those FPGAs. Now, I have no doubt that Synopsys, Dozer, Cadence etc. have better tools but several thousand per seat is a big barrier to entry. So for most of your product line I have to choose between your crappy IDE or something I can’t afford. But for the ICE40 line I have an additional choice. Here’s a suggestion: How about you concentrate your limited resources on making better FPGAs and leave the development tools and weird lawyer enriching contractual crap behind. Or just keep doing what your doing (and wasting resources), we’ll eventually reverse the rest of your product line and if your still in business you’ll be forced to evolve anyway. Hmm Latice, maybe you could lead Xylinx and Altera for once.

Lattice Diamond was Written in Crayon

I have spent about a day trying to coax Lattice Diamond in to programming a Mach OX3. Maybe the Windows version is useable but really Windows, no thanks I’m working here. The upshot is this: if you need anything outside the ice40 series–for which there are open source tools that one can find by searching IceStorm–then it’s time to move on to Xilinx or Altera. Quartus uses a version of Synopsys and, more to the point, it is usable.