Digital Adventures

Notes on programmable logic, tabletop games & other stuff

The 5 Ws

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I’m Matthew and am currently a senior at Carnegie Mellon University. My major is Electrical & Computer Engineering, though I consider myself to be a computer engineer more so than an electrical engineer. I’ve learned a lot about the theory of programmable logic, computer architecture, and the like, but haven’t really used it in practice.

You, on the other hand, likely fall in one of the following three categories: you found this blog by searching for Xilinx and/or Spartan-6 tutorials, this blog was linked on some sort of aggregation site and you wanted to find out more about what we’re all about, or, most likely, I know you (hi mom) and are reading this because I mentioned this blog to you at some point or another.


As I just alluded to, this blog will focus on practical usage of Xilinx-brand programmable logic devices. At the beginning I’ll be focusing on the Spartan-6 Microboard available from Avnet. Other devices (maybe even some Altera ones) may appear in the future once I’ve exhausted the capabilities of the Microboard (and, you know, have a source of income). I imagine that I’ll also post about some random topics from time to time.

When (also Where)

Right here, starting right now. I hope to write once per week, but I’m a second semester senior so the amount of work that I need to do is orthogonal to the amount of work that I want to do.


I’ve only touched a FPGA in one course during my entire 8 semester career here at CMU. Therefore, I know what to do with them in theory, but not in practice.

Why write about it? I really don’t know, it seemed like a good idea at the outset. Maybe I’ll inspire someone to follow along with my projects.


I’m a student with no industry experience. My work log might be sparse one moment and pedantic another. My writing style is super quirky. Your mileage my vary.