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PYNQ - Enabling Software Engineers to Program Heterogeneous, Reconfigurable SoCs

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact David Greaves.

This talk describes PYNQ , a new, open-source framework for designing with Xilinx Zynq All Programmable SoC devices.

The main goal of framework is to make it easier for designers of embedded systems to exploit the benefits of Zynq ASoC devices in their applications. Specifically, it enables the architects, engineers and programmers who design embedded systems to exploit the capabilities of Zynq APSoCs without having to use ASIC -style, CAD tools to design programmable logic circuits. Instead the APSoC is programmed in Python and the code is developed and tested directly on the embedded system. The programmable logic circuits are imported as hardware libraries and programmed through their APIs, in essentially the same way that software libraries are imported and programmed.

The framework combines four main elements:

  • The use of a high-level productivity language, Python in this case
  • Python-callable hardware libraries based on FPGA overlays
  • A web-based architecture incorporating the open-source Jupyter Notebook infrastructure served from Zynq’s embedded processors
  • Jupyter Notebook’s client-side, web apps

The result is a programming environment that is web-centric so it can be accessed from any browser on any computing platform or operating system. It enables software programmers to work at higher levels of design abstraction and to re-use both software and hardware libraries. The framework is inherently extensible and integrates coherently with hardware–dependent code written in C and C++.

This talk is part of the Computer Laboratory Wednesday Seminars series.

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