MikroElektronika, also known as MIKROE, has announced a new open source approach to handling Click and other mikroBUS-compatible boards under Linux and similar operating systems, complete with support for hot-plug operations: ClickID.
"Click boards have always featured the standardized mikroBUS sockets, which represented a big step forward in the embedded industry as it enabled embedded boards to be more modular and easily upgradable by quickly adding and changing hardware in the form of mikroBUS-compatible add-on boards," says MIKROE's chief executive officer Nebojsa Matic.
"Now, by adding HW/SW [Hardware/Software] support that is automatically recognized by popular OS [Operating Systems], such as Linux," Matic continues, "we have eliminated the challenge of configuring a huge range of devices at boot-time with device trees, which is time-consuming and error-prone."
The idea behind ClickID is simple enough: based on a 1-Wire interface connected to an EEPROM on the board itself, ClickID allows compatible boards to identify themselves and their peripheral configurations to a host system, providing a means for automated handling and diagnostics. Perhaps the most interesting feature it adds is hot-plug support: Click boards, and other mikroBUS hardware implementing the ClickID standard, can be connected to and disconnected from a Linux system without manual configuration.
It's a feature which has been welcomed by the BeagleBoard.org Foundation, which has been working with mikroBUS support in Linux for some time. "At BeagleBoard.org, we are obsessed with improving developer experiences, especially for new users," claims Foundation chief executive Christine Long.
"We are thrilled to see MIKROE introduce ClickID and to adopt mikroBUS manifests we've introduced for future versions of Linux," Long continues. "This is a big step enabling users of boards like our BeagleBoard.org BeaglePlay to simply use the well tested code that is already there without needing to search and integrate, just connect and play."
MIKROE has published ClickID on GitHub under a custom open source license, as part of its MikroSDK package; the library comes with a demo application showcasing reading, writing, and processing ClickID data, and can also be installed through the NECTO Studio Package Manager or via MIKROE's LibStock platform.