OpenCores has set up a donation site to collect funding for an open-source OpenRISC ASIC with the goal is to create a 'super-low-cost; SoC ASIC component based on the OpenRISC processor.
The donation website , which provides more information about the project, claims to have already received money from around 330 people and organizations gifting nearly $15,000.
OpenCores is a community website for the development of hardware IP cores as open source and it is the host for source code for different digital hardware projects such as IP-cores, SoC, and boards as wll as providing support with different tools, platforms, forums and other useful information
Its latest initiative is seen as a challenge to the industry for a flat-price ASIC regardless of volumes. The price-level will be set accordingly based on the accumulated annual volume, meaning, says OpenCores, that all will benefit if the volumes goes up, not only buyers with high volumes.
OpenCores says this will be a joint-venture, trying to increase the overall volumes which will lead to even lower unit-costs. This also means that smaller companies can compete with larger companies on fair condition and get the same price for the ASIC.
The plan is to develop a complete system-on-chip design and implement it into an ASIC-component, and then offer it back to the OpenCores community as a 'super-low-cost' OR1200 processor based SoC ASIC-component, which can be used to develop commercial products without any restrictions or royalties. A development board will also be developed using this OpenRISC-ASIC.