Hi Max. In order to make the diagram more complete (last branch to the right), check us out at www.adicsys.com. ADICSYS has been designing and distributing embedded FPGAs and customized solutions implying generic RTL programmability for a few years now, not to mention our past FPGA activities. It is interesting to hear that Menta seems successful. Someone once told me that when there is competition, there are opportunities. So I take it as a good sign! Our approach is rather different and I do have a few questions about the pertinence of the described process, but this is probably not the place to start a strategic discussion ;-) . In the end, users will see more FPGA features of one kind or another on a wider variety of chips.
I was not aware, that there is a vendor for configurable embedded FPGA fabrics.
I think this is great, for several reasions.
For academic use where all this "what if" games are great to play with.
We've seen the Virtex2pro and now the Zinq idea of a FPGA with extensible processor (adding special purpose instructions etc.) which gives great flexiblity and potential performance boost. But it is expensive and a lot of people don't need gib FPGAs, they would prefere a great and fast microprocessor with some FPGA part.
In a lot of current designs there are only a few big digital chips in it (the rest is mixed signal or only analog). But there is still need for some glue logic and special requirements. Would be nice to include that part also to the main processor (where all the data ends anyways).
For us FPGA designers, there will be more work and fun for us :-)