I'm looking for a ** low cost, flexible ** way of sending/receiving signals in MS Excel or Access. My applications are not time critical, so this is not a big factor. Hopefully FPGA is the answer I am looking for. Does anyone know of a library of FPGA C/C++ functions & Associated DLL's?
I am a novice, and any information I can get would be appreciated.
Also, FPGAs are good for mainly parallel/combinatorial problems that has a fixed processing algorithm like calculating CRCs or implementing a PID controller. For sequential problems like implementing a communications protocol, CPUs are better, not because they are faster (FPGAs at the same clock speed are usually faster) but because implementing a sequential circuit on an FPGA requires a lot of memory elements, particularly D flip-flops - something very expensive on FPGAs.
Block memory is relatively expensive (but getting much cheaper) on FPGA's, but I'd argue that at less than $0.005 per flop, D flip-flops within modern FPGA's are not expensive. Many people consider them free because it is so hard to use them all up before running out of some other resource.