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TI, Green Hills team up to develop DaVinci code

Posted: 01 May 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:DaVinci? Texas Instruments Inc.? MontaVista Linux? Greenhills Software Inc.? david lammers?

The advent of multicore silicon has created an intense need for software-development tools that are aware of the chip's various cores. For its DaVinci digital video technology, Texas Instruments Inc. turned to MontaVista Linux as the initial OS and to Green Hills Software Inc. for the IDE.

TI's DSP code creation tool, CodeComposer, is part of the Green Hills package. TI executives said the overall development environment comes not from TI, but from its partnership with Green Hills.

"We are taking an OS-agnostic strategy with DaVinci," Gregory Mar, SoC platform manager at TI, said at the recent TI Developers Conference. "We felt that MontaVista Linux, with its great regression capabilities, was a good first choice for the OS. The second OS we will support is Integrity from Green Hills, with its security capabilitiesthat is important to the STB customers, among othersand WinCE."

The DaVinci platform includes a 300MHz ARM926 controller, a 600MHz TI C64X DSP core, as well as video accelerators, networking peripherals, four 10bit DACs, and external memory and storage interfaces.

The IDE challenge, Mar said, was to create a debug that could handle multiple cores while maintaining OS awareness. Within its Multi IDE, Green Hills added C64 DSP awareness, enhanced the multicore debug and integrated the CodeComposer compiler. The result, said Dan Mender, director of business development at Green Hills, is the ability to use one session of Multi IDE to debug both DaVinci cores.

Simultaneous debugging of the ARM and C64x cores requires support for an advanced target debug server, loading and debugging code images on both cores, and individual core-instruction stepping. "The bottom line is that this cuts the engineering work required to create a system," Mender said.

The Integrity OS "is not meant to compete with Linux," he said, but offers DaVinci customers security to implement software-defined-radio systems with video and secure PDAs used by the military.

TI is aiming DaVinci at a variety of markets, including video security, IP STBs and IP telephones, videoconferencing, automotive infotainment systems, portable media players and digital cameras that record both still and video images.

- David Lammers
EE Times

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