3D Graphics Thingy was a project that spurred lots of interesting research and experimentation, but never led to any concrete results. It was an attempt to create a custom graphics coprocessor, using 1990s-era rendering hardware techniques, and implemented in an FPGA. It was intended to be capable of generating real-time 3D graphics. Matched with an off-the-shelf CPU, it was envisioned as a custom single-board computer, optimized for the task of gaming graphics.
Development began with a Xilinx Spartan-3A FPGA kit. Along the way, I learned a tremendous amount about FPGA development, and explored the effects of limited memory bandwidth on 3D graphics hardware, including potential optimizations for reducing bandwidth requirements. But the project became bogged down in the details of implementing a DDR memory interface, and never actually reached the point of developing the interesting 3D parts. Eventually I dropped it and moved on to new things, although the core concept may return someday as a 2D Graphics Thingy. Lesson learned: start with a small project and add to it incrementally, instead of beginning with grandiose plans.
You can follow the development history of 3DGT on this site to learn more.8 comments