Bringing the power of Eclipse to VHDL designers

Session Type: 
Standard [35 minutes]

Digital hardware designers develop state-of-the-art chips that perform extremely complex tasks at high speeds. Sadly they rely on antiquated tools to create those very chip designs. The most popular design entry tool today is still Emacs...

To bring hardware designers up to speed with their software colleagues, Sigasi developed an Eclipse based IDE for VHDL, one of the major hardware design languages. Because very little hardware designers have experience with Eclipse, the VHDL plugin is primarily distributed as an RCP application: a customized Eclipse variant, especially targeted for hardware designers.

Sigasi is built with multiple Eclipse technologies: EMF, Xtext, Tycho, Xcore, ... This allows us to focus on the VHDL specific parts of the IDE, without spending too much time on supporting technologies.

In this talk we will demonstrate how a small start-up can build a modern VHDL IDE. We will report on our experiences with Eclipse, the technologies, methodologies and marketing approach we use and the problems we encountered (both technical and social). We hope our story will stimulate new start-ups to use the power of Eclipse in their venture.

Schedule info

Time slot: 
6 June 14:15 - 14:50


Eclipse in the Industry
Experience level: