Sunday, June 10, 2012

Prop UI Progress

It has been a grueling 18 days since my last post. The Propeller UI Board that I have been working on has provided some real challenges. All of the UI Board peripherals on wired to the same I2C Bus. Which means my standard method of debugging the code via a working a Display was not available. The Bus Pirate and a new VGA Display was necessary, which had to be configured which added to a already steep learning curve.

UI Board Installed on the Prop ProtoBoard
Coordinating and developing the Objects for the six UI peripheral was a challenge The task was a little easier thanks to Jeff - KO7M, who helped with the I2C Bus to Parallel Expander Code, and the necessary modification to his I2C LCD Driver.

Currently ALL six UI peripherals, which are on the same I2C Bus, are working in concert with each other without perceivable delays for; the two Rotary Encoders, four Push Buttons, eight LEDs, a Realtime Clock (RTC), and the LCD Display. Also there are the Sound (beeper) and the three I2C POTs that control the LCD Backlight Brightness, LCD Contrast, and Sound Volume - all working seamlessly together.

One of the Software Driver Goals is make moving the Programmed Display from LCD to VGA (and back) without difficultly, other than the obvious which are the Number of Lines and Number of Characters Per Line.

Note: my new I2C Huff-n-Puff board (see previous blog) will also be added to that same I2C Bus (external to the UI).

I had to learn a few new Propeller SPIN tricks to make it all work. Specifically how to coordinate and use "Locks" for Objects and COGs.

Only a few modifications were necessary to the UI PCB. I have already started the re-design with modifications for the next PCB. I will be adding more Pull-ups, and 0-Ohm Jumpers to make separation of circuits easier for future development and debugging.

I have several ideas and better organization of the current code, but that will wait for another day.

It has been a lot of fun. Now on to some projects that will use the Prop UI Board.

First, on the list to port are; my QRSS and WSPR Beacons, Jeff's Keyer, the Huff-n-Puff Freq Standard, and several other Prop Projects that are planned to use the new UI.


No comments:

Post a Comment