In my new position as Director of Innovation at SteelSeries I’ve been doing plenty of hardware hacking and prototyping. I’ve done some work with Arduino, and more recently Teensy3.1. Now I’m playing around with The STM32F4 Discovery board from ST Micro.

The STM32F4Disco is centered around an STM32F407VGT6 MCU that has an ARM Cortex-M4 core with a wealth of peripherals along with 1M of flash and 192K of ram. That’s plenty of room for doing some interesting things… like run a Lisp. Specifically ArmPit Scheme.

ArmPit is a fairly complete R6RS implementation of Scheme, with extensions for low level access and Flash/SD files. It supports a wide variety of ARM based boards.

First you have to get ArmPit on your Arm board. Go to the ArmPit site and follow the links to download the latest version. Have a look at the HowTo page for instructions on uploading Armpit to your board. For the STM32F4-Disco this means using the onboard ST-Link interface. After flashing ArmPit onto the board you will get a REPL prompt on the user USB port. You’ll need some sort of terminal emulator for this. I’m using Serial.app.

Without doing any hardware hacking, here’s an example that manipulates the on-board LEDs.

Magic numbers are bad, so here are some GPIO configuration constants:

(define pin-mode-in 0)
(define pin-mode-out 1)
(define pin-mode-alternate 2)
(define pin-mode-analog    3)

(define otype-pushpull 0)
(define otype-opendrain 1)

(define ospd-low 0)
(define ospd-medium 1)
(define ospd-fast 2)
(define ospd-highspeed 3)

(define pupd-none 0)
(define pupd-pullup 1)
(define pupd-pulldown 2)

The M4 also has a true random number generator, which is incredibly handy. For this demo I’ll be using it:

(define (make-frndu seed)
  (lambda ()
    (/ (bytevector-s32-native-ref (ash (RNG seed) -2) 0) 5.36870911e8)))

(define r (make-frndu #vu8(1 0 0 0)))

And a couple functions to toggle a output pin and do a bit of a delay:

(define (toggle port pin)
  ((if (pin-set? port pin) pin-clear pin-set) port pin))

(define (take-time n)
  (if (> n 0)
      (begin (* 3 5 7)
             (take-time (- n 1)))))

Here’s the main function. It configures the GPIO pins connected to the onboard LEDs, then loops infinitely (well, until you press control C) generating a random number between 0 & 100 and toggles LEDs based on that value.

(define (blink)
  (config-pin giod 12 pin-mode-out)
  (config-pin giod 13 pin-mode-out)
  (config-pin giod 14 pin-mode-out)
  (config-pin giod 15 pin-mode-out)
  (let loop ((n (* 100 (r))))
    (if (> n 25) (toggle giod 12))
    (if (> n 50) (toggle giod 13))
    (if (> n 75) (toggle giod 14))
    (if (> n 90) (toggle giod 15))
    (take-time 10000)
    (loop (* 100 (r)))))

And here’s what that looks like.

Code is available on Bitbucket.