A Scratch-built RISC-V CPU In An FPGA

“RISC architecture is going to change everything”, which is why [SHAOS] is building this cool RISC-V DIY retro-style computer.

The project took inspiration from another hacker’s work in building a RISC-V emulator; shared in the Hackaday FPGA chat. He took it a bit further and got it going on an UPDuino v2.0 board which features a iCE40 FPGA from Lattice.

The board passes all the tests for the RISC-V subset he’s aiming for and even run some Zephry RTOS examples. He’s done a really good job of documenting how he got the code to run as well as many of the experiments he’s run so far. All the project files for ICEcube2 software are posted. It’s not the only RISC-V CPU we’ve seen in an FPGA, but the code is actually very clear and worth a read if you’re into such things.

We think anyone interested in duplicating his work could do so somewhat easily and start playing around with this increasingly popular architecture. Or at least get some LED’s blinking in an arcane but meaningful way. Video after the break.

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Scripting To Automate Your Mindless Android Games

There’s a silly little Android game making some noise on the Interwebs. It’s called Curiosity which is a 3D cube with something inside. The thing is, every single pixel on the cube must be clicked in order to get through a layer. There are of course multiple layers, and… well, you get the point. [Stephen] figures this is a perfect thing for a bit of scripting and set out to find a way to automatically play the Android game.

As you can see above he’s got a pretty good start. To use the script in its current form he finds a part of the cube that is mostly solid green. The Android device is plugged into a computer using the USB cable, and the Android Debug Bridge runs the script. It’s amazingly simple, as it uses the monkeyrunner package which comes with the SDK. The proof is there, and it’s just a matter of whether or not he wants to spend his time to fully automate the playing of the game. You can see a demo of the script embedded after the break.

[Stephen’s] not new to automating things that he doesn’t want to do himself. Here’s an example of his code beating the PlayThru CAPTCHA.

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Hackit: Modern Arcade Cabinets?

We’ve been contemplating getting into MAME arcade cabinet building. It was sparked by someone dropping off a Street Fighter II machine at our office. Many people have been seeking to build the perfect arcade cabinet clone, but looking over this old dusty cabinet we realized that retro isn’t really what we want. We want an arcade cabinet with a modern aesthetic.

Retro Thing recently posted [Martijn Koch]’s Retro Space. The cabinet takes design cues from old cabinets, but uses modern technology like a 24″ LCD. It does feature classic controls though. Wandering through arcades today, most of the machines appear to be DDR style or vehicle sims. No one is building modern gaming machines.

We’re still in the planning stages of this build. We’d definitely use classic controls and combine it with an LCD 24″ or larger. The brain would probably be a Playstation 3. We could run any emulator we want on the Linux side and also play modern PS3 games. How it will look is still up in the air. We’re leaning towards building a standup 4 player brawler machine for playing games like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, X-Men, and The Simpsons.

Have any of you built a MAME machine before? How would you build an arcade machine with a modern aesthetic?