New lower price for Axon II ($78) and Axon Mote ($58).
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It would seem possible, as OpenCV runs on Linux, and there are linux distributions available for ARM7, ARM9 and Blackfin processors. See - http://opencvlibrary.sourceforge.net/InstallGuide_Linux
The main issue you will encounter is that OpenCV uses floating point math, and most microcontrollers only have fixed point multipliers, so you will either have to convert some OpenCV code or run floating point emulation on those particular processors, which is probably quite slow.
Also, I don't know how large the library is, though it can probably be trimmed down to a few megabytes.
Bottom line - if you are familar with embedded programming, code size optimization, floating point emulation, etc, this is probably an interesting project to undertake. If not, you probably want to use a full-size Intel compatible processor that has floating point and lots of memory.
In any case, to get an idea of what vision algorithms you will need, try www.robotrealm.com - that is a good starting point for image processing software.
there are a few libraries out there that use far less resources than openCV and are more portable.have a search. i haven't seen much info on libraries specialising in embedded processors though.i'm currently using http://cimg.sourceforge.net/ on a Intel XScale ARM processor with good results.
hgordon, may I ask more specifically what you've disliked about TI DSPs? In what ways have you found them difficult to program? Poor GCC support? Poor documentation?If I decide to go with fixed-point, the Blackfins look pretty snazzy. http://blackfin.uclinux.org/ also looks like a rather convenient source of information for a newb like me.
Edit: I can't imagine I want to do more than the Mars Rovers, and they apparently operate at 25Mhz, with 128MB RAM and 256MB Flash.
I guess I should really map out what algorithms I expect to use so that I can decide how much floating-point emulation would matter.
You guys make a good point - I'd take a big clock speed hit if I went for a DaVinci. At this point, I'm thinking I want a Blackfin. The BGA is a pain, though. I've been planning on building a PCB router, but I think something with that many traces in such a small area seems like it would be pretty difficult to do, unfortunately.