Microchip provides free of charge graphics toolkit

Available from Microchip at no cost, license- and royalty-free, the Ensemble graphics toolkit for Linux OS enhances 32-bit microprocessor capabilities for low- and mid-range- resolution graphical displays.

The graphical user interface (GUI) development toolkit is specifically for Microchip’s portfolio of 32-bit microprocessors running Linux and is intended to help designers of industrial, medical, consumer and automotive graphical displays reduce development cost and time to market.

The Ensemble graphics toolkit is a free and open source C++ GUI suite for Microchip’s SAMA5 and SAM9 series of Arm Cortex-A5 and ARM926EJ-S processor-based microprocessors including the system in package and system on module products. By taking advantage of underlying hardware acceleration, including graphics controllers and video decoders when available, the toolkit provides a high-performance user experience on low and mid-range graphical displays up to XGA (1024 × 768 pixels) resolution.

Optimised code allows a smaller memory footprint to save bill of materials cost, says Microchip, and providing a performance efficiency relative to other graphics solutions that rely on higher performance cores and 3D graphical acceleration to be created for Microchip’s power-efficient microprocessors. The toolkit and Linux can be optimised for fast cold boot – with boot times of under three seconds from cold reset that is required for applications such as automotive dashboard clusters.

“Whereas other tools require ever higher-performing, higher-power and costlier microprocessors, this no-cost development suite is an enabler that optimizes processing power,” said Rod Drake, vice president of Microchip’s MPU32 business unit. “Developers can achieve modern GUIs with excellent user experience with a lower bill of material cost, lower power and longevity of solution – while providing a high-end look,” he said.

Microchip’s Ensemble graphics toolkit suite is available without licensing or royalty fees to all developers of graphical interfaces. The Ensemble graphics toolkit is complementary to Microchip’s bare metal/RTOS-focused MPLAB Harmony Graphics Suite embedded software development framework that also provides a zero cost, royalty-free graphical user experience. Training and support are available worldwide at www.microchip.com/EGT.

The toolkit is fully integrated with Linux4SAM, Microchip’s mainline, Long Term Support (LTS) Linux offering. In addition to supporting Microchip’s microprocessor families Linux4SAM contains driver support for a broad range of its components including the maXTouch family of touchscreen controllers, memory devices, power management and analogue devices and wired and wireless networking components and modules. Linux4SAM is regularly updated and supports all Microchip microprocessors throughout product life.


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