Somewhat OT: FPGA Develpment Kits

Tony Duell ard at
Tue Nov 21 16:50:32 CST 2006

> > Am i the only one that feels that using modern FPGA's to recreate old 
> CPU's is getting dangerously close to just running an emulation on a 
> modern PC ?

It is, but so what? 

This next statement might suprise you. I see nothing wrong with emulators 
running on modern PCs -- provided you acknowledge that's not the real 
vintage hardware. If you're more interested in software, then running an 
emulaotr seems to be a perfectly valid way of running said software.

Similarly, if you like FPGAs [1] then making clones of old CPUs using 
them seems to be something worth doing.

But I would not want to replace the CPU boards in the PDP8/e on my desk 
with a board containing an FPGA + level shifters. Just as I'd not want to 
put a PC motherboard running an emulator inside that case.

However, because I see something as 'not wrong' doesn't mean I want to do 
it. I still want to do battle with boards of vintage chips.

[1] Haveing had to use FPGAs in the past, I'd not wish those darn things 
onto anybody. Suffice it to say _I_ am a lot more productive armed with a 
board of chips and a wire-wrap tool.


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