OpenCores


非公式の主導者であるJamil Khatibが中心となって、オープンソースの理念を ハードの分野にも取り入れ、半導体分野の新興企業やデバイスメーカーを支援する目的で、プロセッサ、メモリコントローラ,周辺機器、マザーボードなどの設計要素で構成された、大規模なハード設計ライブラリを開発しようとしているハード開発者の団体の名称。詳細情報はURL(http://www.opencores.org)で知ることができる。ただし、企業は採用したオープンソース設計を最終的なデバイス設計に統合する必要があることから、無料のチップは存在しないことになり、Linuxのようにコピーをダウンロードしてインストールするというわけにはいかず、安くて質の高いハードを提供することが最終目的になる。ロゴも自由に制作することができることから、URL(http://www.opencores.org/logolist.shtml)で多くの案がリストになって提供されている。NASA(National Aeronautics and Space Administration/米国航空宇宙局/ナサ)職員のPatrick J. Moranは2003年4月21日に、Mozilla Public LicenseをはじめとするOpen Source Initiativeに認定された一部ソフト開発をオープンソースモデルに移行すべきだとの提言を行った論文「Developing An Open Source Option for NASA Software」を発表し、Slashdotが2003年5月16日に公開した。 詳細情報はURL(http://www.nas.nasa.gov/Research/Reports/Techreports/2003/nas-03-009-abstract.html)で知ることができる。

[2001年1月8日のリリース]
Press Release / For Immediate Release

OpenCores to adopt WISHBONE SoC interconnection; Silicore places standard into the public domain

January 8, 2001 - Minneapolis, MN USA. Today the OpenCores organization adopted WISHBONE as a connectivity standard for its line of open cores. WISHBONE is a SoC interconnection standard that allows the design of compatible IP cores. In a related move, Silicore Corporation, the inventor of the WISHBONE SoC interconnect, has placed the standard into the public domain.

Damjan Lampret, cofounder of OpenCores, said: ''we needed common SoC bus for all our IP cores and WISHBONE is the only one to really meet all our requirements. We have selected WISHBONE because of the flexibility and simplicity. And it is the only truly open and free SoC bus today. An analysis performed by Rudolf Usselmann showed that other two major SoC buses do not meet our requirements.''

Wade Peterson, President and CEO of Silicore, stated that: ''we, our customers and others have been using WISHBONE for almost two years now, and have been very pleased with the results. It's time to put this thing into the public domain so that others can use it and build on the technology. This is the next step in the evolution of system-on-chip, as it's the first completely open standard of its kind.''

Peterson also stated that: ''the OpenCores organization brings a totally new dimension as well. That group fosters the development of open IP cores in a way that is similar to the Linux software distribution model. However, until this point they haven't had a common design standard, which has made IP cores more difficult to integrate. WISHBONE fills that gap. It also helps us as it creates additional, standard IP to integrate with our own products. It's a great win-win situation.''

Silicore has also pursued standardization for WISHBONE from approved bodies like ANSI and the IEEE. However, there hasn't been a sufficient number of sponsors yet to move forward with that plan. However, the WISHBONE architecture has gained attention from established standards organizations like VITA, who have expressed interest in the idea.

For example, Ray Alderman (executive director of VITA) said: ''I think [WISHBONE] would be very interesting for VITA to work with and standardize. Some members are getting into cores and FPGA-based processing units, and possibly ASICs. It would also make a very interesting local bus (on boards) as PCI continues to die-out over the next few years. A complete library of core functions and bus functions could be cataloged and made available on the web site and people could download those functions in HDL and implement them in programmable logic. It also might work if folks who use the core are required to put their changes back into the public domain for others to use...a la Linux structure.''

In the near term, Silicore will act as a technical resource for the OpenCores organization. Under that arrangement the OpenCores community will initially use the WISHBONE as-is. However, they will have the opportunity to refine the standard even further. According to Wade Peterson: ''this is a wonderful opportunity not only for OpenCores' participants to get used to the standard, but also to make changes to it if they need or wish to. By acting as a technical resource, Silicore can remain active in the standards' development process to insure that its own WISHBONE compatible products stay compliant with the standard.''

SILICORE is a registered service mark and trademark of Silicore Corporation.

END OF RELEASE

Related Web links:

OpenCores website: URL(http://www.opencores.org)
VITA website: URL(http://www.vita.com)
OpenCores SoC bus comparison: URL(http://www.opencores.org/wishbone/soc_bus_comparison.pdf)

Related Email links:

Ray Alderman (VITA): exec@vita.com
Damjan Lampret (OpenCores): lampret@opencores.org
Wade D. Peterson (Silicore): wadep@silicore.net
Rudolf Usselmann (OpenCores): rudi@opencores.org