As I'm going through trying to figure out the right way to draw diagrams for some of the problems, I keep coming across a ton of different tools in search results, each saying VHDL and Verilog are old and busted, and here's the hot new tool to use instead. I was specifically looking for HDL Designer because I remember using that tool briefly at my old job (it made pretty state machine diagrams, and a mess of everything else) to see how the heck I should draw a generic input in a block diagram. But there are plenty of other graphical entry tools that are coming up in the search results that I've never heard of. And I laughed out loud at a result from some slide sharing place that mentioned this hot new language System C, which I mostly only remember being frustrated with in grad school because it was only slowing my hardware designing down at that point.
But that also lead me to wonder, there's a lot of options out there for FPGA languages, but how many of them are used really? Githut is a great place to see what languages are being used in github, and unsurprisingly, not a one of them is VHDL or Verilog, let alone something that's trying to replace them. I think I'll begrudgingly allow that arduino, while not being hardware design is certainly embedded design, but it's popularity also goes to show the giant gulf between software design and hardware design. If you go in and do manual searches, you can find these numbers:
- Verilog at 5353 repositories
- VHDL at 5105 repositories
- SystemVerilog listed as it's own language with 521 repositories
- BlueSpec with 61
But finding myHDL which is actually python, or something in OpenCL (C99) or a HDL in any of the <other language>-like-languages will be hard to search for that way.
But in the modern miracle world of google, you can mostly get away with just googling what you want to know, and poof, 2 million results on hardware design language survey. But the bad news is most of these academic papers are behind firewalls, or pushing their specific area of focus (functional languages, object oriented languages). A cursory look shows me that most designers use VHDL or Verilog, and any other languages percentage of users is so low it's in the noise. What do you think?