Given the popularity of the Arduino among the “maker” community, a large body of software and literally 100s of “shields” which allow extension of the board’s basic functionality by adding different components have been developed.
Yet the Arduino’s underlying 8-bit processor running at 16Mhz, coupled with small amounts of FLASH memory and RAM often limits the projects that can be accomplished. This limitation has been mitigated to some degree by this year’s release of the Arduino Due, which moves the platform to a 32-bit processor running at 84 Mhz with 96Kbytes of RAM and 512Kbytes of FLASH.
However last year saw the release of a much more powerful solution at a cost similar to the Arduino Due: the Netduino Plus 2, which features the STM32 F4 microcontroller. The F4, running at 168Mhz, has twice the speed of the Due’s processor, has double the RAM at 192Kbytes and double the FLASH at 1024 Kbytes. And that’s not all – the Netduino Plus 2 32-bit ARM processor also provides a Floating Point Unit (FPU) and DSP instructions that enable advanced signal processing. And last but not least, the Netuino Plus 2 has an ethernet interface for connecting directly to the internet.
There was only one catch: Arduino developers used to the C-language and the Arduino API had to transition to use the .NET Micro Framework – a new language and a runtime. Moreover, the .NET Micro Framework consumes a significant portion of the onboard RAM/Flash on the Netduino Plus 2.
Seeing this condition, Kauai Labs decided to provide Arduino API and C/C++ language development on the Netduino Plus 2, and has developed the free, open-source software library named “libmaple-f405″. This work is based upon the Leaf Labs “maple” library.
This library is now available for anyone interested; we hope you enjoy it.