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Launchpad Shields discussion


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Hello,

 

Once suggestion that I would like to add here is that if we make the two launch pads stacked in an off-set fashion then we get double the chips plus more IO. The question remains how the chips interact. I have a solution, try One-Wire protocol. Not good for fast comm but enough for 200KHz. I tested with two MSP430F2013 tied on a single port (P1.0 for me) line with internal pull-up disabled. Bi-directional comm is possible but I made one micro master and another slave.

I plan to use this as a part of my Small sensor network that I use for data-logging of various weather parameters.

 

Let me know your views on this.

 

Warm Regards,

Boseji

http://m8051.blogspot.com

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what about the 3410 w/ ubuntu, it is working reasonably well under 9600bps? is there anything u want to achieve thru it is not working? explain and may be there is already a solution. the linux driver

lol, the post was in 2008 and back then there were no linux drivers. i start w/ the ez430u early 2010 and had seem thru all the linux support gradually build up to what we have today.   good luck w/

As noted by others, the valuelines are little chips. Ram is kinda tight, not too many pins, etc.   But they are dead cheap - no two ways around it. So let's think of the Launchpad + 430's strength

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Shields are great. I am starting to make a stepper shield for my launchpad, but I don't think its all that cool. I am using a Ti Drv8811 stepper driver and going to use the launchpad as a pass through to EMC2. I have the 8811 on a eval board from www.avayanelectronics.com I could not afford a DRV8811-evm @ $150, but his board should be ok as my prototype motors are only rated at 0.6a per phase. Once I get the whole thig working sprawled out on the desk, I will design a more permenent shield to go along with it. For me, I think the hardest part will be getting the TUSB3410 working with UBUNTU 10.04. I was wondering if anybody had any suggestions? Also does anybody know what the launchpad test pins are for that go to the f1612? I can easily follow tp1 & tp3 from the usb connector, but the ones that connect to the f1612 escape me. I assume they could be clock signals, based on the launchpad users guide schematic, but I tried scoping them and most of them hang around 3v. That's not really a signal. I have a 100mhz scope and I don't think its to slow to capture anything from the launchpad?

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For me, I think the hardest part will be getting the TUSB3410 working with UBUNTU 10.04. I was wondering if anybody had any suggestions? Also does anybody know what the launchpad test pins are for that go to the f1612? I can easily follow tp1 & tp3 from the usb connector, but the ones that connect to the f1612 escape me. I assume they could be clock signals, based on the launchpad users guide schematic, but I tried scoping them and most of them hang around 3v. That's not really a signal. I have a 100mhz scope and I don't think its to slow to capture anything from the launchpad?

 

what about the 3410 w/ ubuntu, it is working reasonably well under 9600bps? is there anything u want to achieve thru it is not working? explain and may be there is already a solution. the linux driver is not ideal but works reliably.

 

as for the emulator part of the launchpad, it is close to a ez430-rf2500 dongle (same usb id, same emulator interface), if u are interested in re-purposing it the best information can be found here.

 

http://travisgoodspeed.blogspot.com/200 ... art-1.html

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@Simpleavr

 

Sorry, I just poked around at Travis Goodspeed's blog. That is where I got the impression that the TUSB3410 may not work well, but since that does not seem to be a major issue then the next big hurdle I will be overcomming is a device driver for my launchpad with the EMC2 software that will run the stepper motor for each axis on the cnc router I ultimately want to make. I still got plenty of work left before I get to that part. I just do not have a lot of time right now to work on it, but I hope to have the drive up and running by summer, at least as a prototype. (which for me is usually where I stop, because once I CAN do something I usually lose interest and move on to something else I want to learn.) :geek:

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That is where I got the impression that the TUSB3410 may not work well

 

lol, the post was in 2008 and back then there were no linux drivers. i start w/ the ez430u early 2010 and had seem thru all the linux support gradually build up to what we have today.

 

good luck w/ your projects. i hope the CNC host control is just a matter of comm port configurations.

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@Simpleavr

 

Thanks, I hope it will be that simple, but with my luck probobly not. The last linux version I really used was redhat 7.x in like 99-00. After that I got a laptop with xp and went with it, but I did use linux from 1995, when I wanted to stay command line after Dos, til 2001 when I got the laptop. In 2008 I bought a used Sun workstation and started re-acquainting myself with unix, but since the oracle merger it just isn't the same company. The whole feel is different and when I triend to download the latest release there were a lot of errors. My other desktop, aside from a ubuntu box for EMC2, is a converted server with xp, 2 dual core 3ghz xeon processors, 4g ram, and 2tb secondary storage. I would like to eventually migrate to maybe bsd or Fedora, brings back fond memories, but for now I use xp which is well supported by DeVry, where I take classes online.

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well i am sure if u get more recent kernels (whether it's redhat, debian or what) u will get good support for on the usb ti uses. but don't try to "upgrade/build" newer drivers into old distros, i tried that and it's not worth it, u end up rebuilding kernel and there are so many dependencies that it's hard to manage.

 

a lot of people (if not most) runs examples on CCS/IAR under windows, it's really a personal choice. the windows/CCS combo takes way lot more resources that the linux route. but if your primary machine is windows, it make sense.

 

another alternative is to install cygwin on windows and have mspgcc / mspdebug build / run on it. i haven't try it but it should work, except u have to "build" the toolchain, don't think there exists pre-build packages.

 

looking forward to see your projects (auto-related?) :)

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  • 2 months later...

I have suggestions (as i'm beginner in PCB layout, so cannot design boards correctly myself) to make video board, with RCA jacks + termination resistors and maybe a socket for an optional LM1881 for video overlaying. The USI module of MSP430 could be repurposed as a a fast shifter for generating black-and-white video signals in software, like many people do with AVRs. There is also a TellyMate shield for the Arduino that consists of ATMEGA8 who generates video in software emulating a serial terminal.

 

Another suggestion would be to make a Nokia -clone color LCD shield, for connecting those well-known 6100/6610-type LCDs, since they have a special SMD connector that is hard to find or (de)solder without professional equipment and they require generation of LED backlight voltage.

 

Maybe also some SPI SRAMs from Microchip could be integrated on some other shield as easy to use buffer memory, maybe on a shield also containing a SD slot as DIP-based MSP430 generally have very low amounts of RAM, even less then some PIC16F and less than most PIC18F.

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if we want to populate a standard for launchpad shields i think we have to make the first step and draw some beginner layouts so that there is a basic for getting started.

 

Every layout should contain an easy sample code which is well documentated and has a good descrition.

The layout it selve should also be described verry well! I think thex should also be single layered so you can etch them at home!

 

 

I think of sample boards like:

4x4 Led Matrix with 2 buttons

 

2x7degit led

 

Shiftregister example

 

pottentiometer shield

 

Servo connector

 

EEPROM

 

...

...

...

 

We could also start a microsite with that shields where you can view and download all of them!

 

i also think we should form something like a project group where we organize how we do this!

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Seems that TI has set the (un)official standard and name for Launchpad shields by releasing the Capacitative Booster Pack. It's size and pin layout, the use of male headers on the launchpad (BS in my opinion), and the lack of extra stacking.

 

Personally, Booster Pack sounds so much better than wannabe shields :D

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I think TI can set the name and direction of the LP because they have given it the initial momentum. If someone else were to come up with an alternative to the LP that made it just a little bit better then I think TI would have to react/embrace the new direction. At least it would be nice if they did.

 

I'll go so far as to predict that if someone came up with a superior alternative to the LP then TI would relinquish leadership to that someone so they could carry the TI Banner into the marketplace on their behalf. The Arduino Guys are doing this for Atmel right now.

 

I would love to make a new LP hardware standard that has more horsepower, I/O and that has a software library to compliment it. I think that the LaunchPad hardware is "resource constrained". In other words, it's a wimp of a processor for doing anything more than one or two functions. Simply put, it's a toy.

 

Just think, how many of you have run out of code space trying to get the Timer UART and text string printing operational? I know that I have.

 

I think that the f2274 or the f5529 would be 100 times better on the LP than the value line series devices.

 

Of course, I am stirring the pot with my comments.

 

Thoughts or Reactions?

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Zeke, you forget that the initial launchpad valueline chips were just that, initial chips. With the batch released a while ago quadrupling what those chips offered, and the batch just released/soon to be released going past the limits of what ccs and iar can compile for free, it's quite different.

 

8kb code space compared to the initial 2kb. Plenty of space for both uart and text conversion now.

 

Additionally, they do have full factor dev kits for the larger F series, it's just not practical for small hobbyists. They are getting up there to pic/arduino level abilities with the valueline though.

 

Hell, USBTiny gets software usb on a atiny2313, clocked at 12mhz, with just 1.5k of code space for the usb handling. This is a 2kb code space, 128 eeprom 128ram chip.

http://www.uelectronics.info/usbtiny-at ... -convertor

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I like the idea of a more powerful Launchpad.

16KB is a good bit, but there's always some kind of application where you need more, so it'd be nice to have an option for then. As much as TI is likely to release chips with more memory and features in the future, I don't think they'll hit the 256KB and peripherals of the f5xx/f6xx parts anytime soon.

If we were to make a bigger standard, it would probably be designed (less expensively) with hobbyists in mind since we're designing it for ourselves. Please don't think I'm bashing anyone, it just can't hurt to design a bigger board.

Regarding shields, any extension to the current Launchpad should be able to fit ones meant for the smaller form factor.

 

 

Things to consider:

How will the extra I/O be laid out? I've been thinking a little about duplicating the original Launchpad's pinout for the first port and a half so code written for the value line chips can run without extensive pin changes. Maybe we could add on another row of that for the next port and a half and fit in the rest of the I/O along the outside edges of the two Launchpad-esque rows? Shields that would only be useful with the additional power of a higher-end MSP430 could be designed to fit on top of these rows in addition to the others.

Is there any way to indicate RX and TX while programming or communicating via USB?

What basic peripherals should we add onto the board? EEPROM, built-in LEDs, accelerometer,...?

Are we going to attempt to design all these boards single-sided? As much as being able to etch them is a good idea, it would most likely also decrease our board density. I do have double sided copper clad, but doing one-sided would eliminate the requirement to line sides up. However, designing a reasonably sized board for the f5529 would be hard if not impossible to do with one side.

And what are we going to call add-on boards? I agree that "shields" sounds like an imitation here, but "booster pack" brings up memories of trading cards. :lol:

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Of course, I am stirring the pot with my comments.

 

Don't you think the LP is weak compared to the Arduino?

 

Double, double toil and trouble;

Fire burn, and caldron bubble.

 

mode>

 

Don't get me wrong. I love working with the MSP430. I am just hungry for a dev kit that isn't a weakling.

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And what are we going to call add-on boards? I agree that "shields" sounds like an imitation here, but "booster pack" brings up memories of trading cards. :lol:

 

While the others are calling theirs shields, I think we should call ours Swords!

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