[v4,03/11] docs: Add Generic Counter interface documentation
diff mbox

Message ID b7387aef452da0a3591d3c48e6e1f362a7713e9f.1513266127.git.vilhelm.gray@gmail.com
State New
Headers show

Commit Message

William Breathitt Gray Dec. 14, 2017, 8:51 p.m. UTC
This patch adds high-level documentation about the Generic Counter
interface.

Signed-off-by: William Breathitt Gray <vilhelm.gray@gmail.com>
---
 Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst | 434 +++++++++++++++++++++++
 Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst           |   1 +
 MAINTAINERS                                      |   1 +
 3 files changed, 436 insertions(+)
 create mode 100644 Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst

Comments

Jonathan Cameron Jan. 1, 2018, 11:45 a.m. UTC | #1
On Thu, 14 Dec 2017 15:51:16 -0500
William Breathitt Gray <vilhelm.gray@gmail.com> wrote:

> This patch adds high-level documentation about the Generic Counter
> interface.
> 
> Signed-off-by: William Breathitt Gray <vilhelm.gray@gmail.com>
> ---
>  Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst | 434 +++++++++++++++++++++++
>  Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst           |   1 +
>  MAINTAINERS                                      |   1 +
>  3 files changed, 436 insertions(+)
>  create mode 100644 Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst
> 
> diff --git a/Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst b/Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst
> new file mode 100644
> index 000000000000..219c571e90ce
> --- /dev/null
> +++ b/Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst
> @@ -0,0 +1,434 @@
> +=========================
> +Generic Counter Interface
> +=========================
> +
> +Introduction
> +============
> +
> +Counter devices are prevalent within a diverse spectrum of industries.
> +The ubiquitous presence of these devices necessitates a common interface
> +and standard of interaction and exposure. This driver API attempts to
> +resolve the issue of duplicate code found among existing counter device
> +drivers by introducing a generic counter interface for consumption. The
> +Generic Counter interface enables drivers to support and expose a common
> +set of components and functionality present in counter devices.
> +
> +Theory
> +======
> +
> +Counter devices can vary greatly in design, but regardless of whether
> +some devices are quadrature encoder counters or tally counters, all
> +counter devices consist of a core set of components. This core set of
> +components, shared by all counter devices, is what forms the essence of
> +the Generic Counter interface.
> +
> +There are three core components to a counter:
> +
> +        COUNT
> +        -----
> +        A Count represents the count data for a set of Signals. A Count
> +        has a count function mode (e.g. "increase" or "quadrature x4")
> +        which represents the update behavior for the count data. A Count
> +        also has a set of one or more associated Signals.
> +
> +        SIGNAL
> +        ------
> +        A Signal represents a counter input data; this is the data that
> +        is typically analyzed by the counter to determine the count
> +        data. A Signal may be associated to one or more Counts.

I would give and example - input wire from a rotary encoder (perhaps)

> +
> +        SYNAPSE
> +        -------
> +        A Synapse represents the association of a Signal with a
> +        respective Count. Signal data affects respective Count data, and
> +        the Synapse represents this relationship. The Synapse action
> +        mode (e.g. "rising edge" or "double pulse") specifies the Signal
> +        data condition which triggers the respective Count's count
> +        function evaluation to update the count data. It is possible for
> +        the Synapse action mode to be "none" if a Signal is associated
> +        with a Count but does not trigger the count function (e.g. the
> +        direction signal line for a Pulse-Direction encoding counter).
> +
> +A counter is defined as a set of input signals associated to count data
> +that are generated by the evaluation of the state of the associated
> +input signals as defined by the respective count functions. Within the
> +context of the Generic Counter interface, a counter consists of Counts
> +each associated to a set of Signals, whose respective Synapse instances
> +represent the count function update conditions for the associated
> +Counts.
> +
> +Paradigm
> +========
> +
> +The most basic counter device may be expressed as a single Count
> +associated with a single Signal via a single Synapse. Take for example
> +a counter device which simply accumulates a count of rising edges on a
> +source input line.
> +
> +        Count                Synapse        Signal
> +        -----                -------        ------
> ++---------------------+
> +| Data: Count         |    Rising Edge     ________
> +| Function: Increase  |  <-------------   / Source \
> +|                     |                  ____________
> ++---------------------+
> +
> +In this example, the Signal is a source input line with a pulsing
> +voltage, while the Count is a persistent count value which is repeatedly
> +incremented. The Signal is associated with the respective Count via a
> +Synapse. The increase function is triggered by the Signal data condition
> +specified by the Synapse -- in this case a rising edge condition on the
> +voltage input line. In summary, the counter device existence and
> +behavior is aptly represented by respective Count, Signal, and Synapse
> +components: a rising edge condition triggers an increase function on an
> +accumulating count datum.
> +
> +A counter device is not limited to a single Signal; in fact, in theory
> +many number of Signals may be associated with even a single Count. For

many Signals

> +example, a quadrature encoder counter device can keep track of position
> +based on the states of two input lines.
> +
> +           Count                 Synapse     Signal
> +           -----                 -------     ------
> ++-------------------------+
> +| Data: Position          |    Both Edges     ___
> +| Function: Quadrature x4 |  <------------   / A \
> +|                         |                 _______
> +|                         |
> +|                         |    Both Edges     ___
> +|                         |  <------------   / B \
> +|                         |                 _______
> ++-------------------------+

Perhaps add the external encoder itself to the asci art? Where are
the signals coming from. It's not implausible down the line that you'll
have to have explicit representation for that hardware.  Could be
a resolve to encoder convertor for example with its own control registers.

> +
> +In this example, two Signals (quadrature encoder lines A and B) are
> +associated to a single Count: a rising or falling edge on either A or B
> +triggers the "Quadrature x4" function which determines the direction of
> +movement and updates the respective position data. The "Quadrature x4"
> +function is likely implemented in the hardware of the quadrature encoder
> +counter device; the Count, Signals, and Synapses simply represent this
> +hardware behavior and functionality.
> +
> +Signals associated to the same Count can have differing Synapse action
> +mode conditions. For example, a quadrature encoder counter device
> +operating in a non-quadrature Pulse-Direction mode could have one input
> +line dedicated for movement and a second input line dedicated for
> +direction.
> +
> +           Count                   Synapse      Signal
> +           -----                   -------      ------
> ++---------------------------+
> +| Data: Position            |    Rising Edge     ___
> +| Function: Pulse-Direction |  <-------------   / A \ (Movement)
> +|                           |                  _______
> +|                           |
> +|                           |       None         ___
> +|                           |  <-------------   / B \ (Direction)
> +|                           |                  _______
> ++---------------------------+
> +
> +Only Signal A triggers the "Pulse-Direction" update function, but the
> +instantaneous state of Signal B is still required in order to know the
> +direction so that the position data may be properly updated. Ultimately,
> +both Signals are associated to the same Count via two respective
> +Synapses, but only one Synapse has an active action mode condition which
> +triggers the respective count function while the other is left with a
> +"None" condition action mode to indicate its respective Signal's
> +availability for state evaluation despite its non-triggering mode.
> +
> +The flexibility of Synapses allows for the representation of counters
> +whose respective Count Signal relationships would be difficult to
> +represent as isolated inputs. For example a tri-color LED color counter
> +can easily be represented with three Synapses:
> +
> +           Count          Synapse      Signal
> +           -----          -------      ------
> ++------------------+
> +| Data: Count      |    Both Edges     _______
> +| Function: Purple |  <------------   /  Red  \
> +|                  |                 ___________
> +|                  |
> +|                  |    Both Edges     _______
> +|                  |  <------------   / Green \
> +|                  |                 ___________
> +|                  |
> +|                  |    Both Edges     _______
> +|                  |  <------------   / Blue  \
> +|                  |                 ___________
> ++------------------+
> +
> +This counter accumulates the number of times the tri-color LED has
> +turned to purple. By utilizing the Synapses to associate the three color
> +Signals to the single Count, the count function evaluation relationship
> +becomes apparent: combined color is checked when an individual color is
> +turned on or off, and if only Red and Blue are active then Count datum
> +is incremented to indicate the color has now turned to Purple.

This one has somewhat drifted away from common cases. I'm not sure it
is necessary to understanding so I'd be tempted to drop it as the only
potential this and the one below have right now is to distract from
the code we are actually interested in getting reviewed.

> +
> +Although the examples thus far have been representations of physical
> +devices, this is not a necessity. A counter simply represent the
> +evaluation (Count) of input data (Signals) triggered by specific
> +conditions (Synapses). A counter can be the representation of more
> +abstract components.
> +
> +For example, suppose a counter representation is desired for a DNA
> +sequence analysizer which detects possible genetic diseases.
> +
> +        Count                     Synapse            Signal
> +        -----                     -------            ------
> ++---------------------+
> +| Data: Diseases      |    Gene Transcript (EST)     _____
> +| Function: Cancers   |  <-----------------------   / DNA \ (GAAGTGC...)
> +|                     |                            _________
> ++---------------------+
> +
> +In this scenario, the Signal is a stream of DNA nucleotide bases (As,
> +Ts, Cs, and Gs), the Synapse action modes consist of the various
> +expressed sequence tags (ESTs), and the Count is a list of diseases
> +discovered (in this particular example the function is evaluating for
> +possible cancers). Note how the Signal in this example does not
> +represent a physical voltage line, nor does the Synapse action mode
> +represent a physical voltage line state change, nor does the Count
> +represent a strictly decimal data value.
> +
> +The DNA sequence analysizer example is contrived to illustrate the
> +flexibility of the generic counter paradigm by demonstrating its
> +capability of representing abstract concepts; however, physical devices
> +are likely to be more fitting for such a representation.
> +
> +The key concept is that the Signal, Synapse, and Count are abstract
> +representations which do not need to be closely married to their
> +respective physical sources. This allows the user of a counter to
> +divorce themselves from the nuances of physical components (such as
> +whether an input line is differential or single-ended) and focus on the
> +core idea of what the data and process represent (e.g. an accumulated
> +count of rising edges).
> +
> +Userspace Interface
> +===================
> +
> +Several sysfs attributes are generated by the Generic Counter interface,
> +and reside under the /sys/bus/counter/devices/counterX directory, where
> +counterX refers to the respective counter device. Please see
> +Documentation/ABI/testing/sys-bus-counter-generic-sysfs for detailed
> +information on each Generic Counter interface sysfs attribute.

I would loose the generic-sysfs off that filename.
sys-bus-counter itself means it covers the generic stuff.

> +
> +Through these sysfs attributes, programs and scripts may interact with
> +the Generic Counter paradigm Counts, Signals, and Synapses of respective
> +counter devices.
> +
> +Driver API
> +==========
> +
> +Driver authors may utilize the Generic Counter interface in their code
> +by including the include/linux/iio/counter.h header file. This header
> +file provides several core data structures and function prototypes for
> +defining a generic counter.
> +
> +
> +struct counter_signal_ext
> +-------------------------
> +
> +This structure defines a Generic Counter Signal extension attribute.
> +These attributes expose auxiliary configuration and functionality
> +specific to the respective Generic Counter Signal.
> +
> +        name:   Attribute name
> +        read:   Read callback for this attribute; may be NULL
> +        write:  Write callback for this attribute; may be NULL
> +        priv:   Data private to the driver
> +
> +struct counter_signal
> +---------------------
> +
> +This structure defines a Generic Counter Signal component. Typically,
> +this will correlate with an input channel on a physical counter device.
> +This structure is the simplest of the Generic Counter paradigm core
> +components to define with only two structure members which require
> +explicit configuration:
> +
> +        id:             unique ID used to identify signal
> +        name:           device-specific signal name

Again, guidance needed on what this actually should be. It's an important
bit of the ABI so best to document what the form of these things should be.

> +        ext:            optional array of Counter Signal extensions
> +        num_ext:        number of Counter Signal extensions specified in
> +                        ext
> +        priv:           optional private data supplied by driver
> +
> +struct counter_synapse
> +----------------------
> +
> +This structure defines a Generic Counter Synapse component. To properly
> +utilize this structure, action modes and an associated Signal must be
> +defined:
> +
> +        action:         current action mode
> +        actions:        available action modes

I would make the names more distinct as action vs actions will not be easy
to read in the code.

> +        num_actions:    number of action modes specified in actions
> +        signal:         pointer to associated signal
> +
> +struct counter_count_ext
> +------------------------
> +
> +This structure defines a Generic Counter Count extension attribute.
> +These attributes expose auxiliary configuration and functionality
> +specific to the respective Generic Counter Count.
> +
> +        name:   attribute name
> +        read:   read callback for this attribute; may be NULL
> +        write:  write callback for this attribute; may be NULL
> +        priv:   data private to the driver
> +
> +struct counter_count
> +--------------------
> +
> +This structure defines a Generic Counter Count component. Typically,
> +this will correlate with the read data (the "count" value) provided by a
> +physical counter device. This structure requires the explicit
> +configuration of an ID, name, function modes (the function triggered on
> +a Synapse action condition), and a set of Synapses for the associated
> +Signals:
> +
> +        id:             unique ID used to identify Count
> +        name:           device-specific Count name
> +        function:       current function mode
current_function or similar will make it more distinct from just the plural.
> +        functions:      available function modes
> +        num_functions:  number of functions specified in @functions
> +        synapses:       array of synapses for initialization
> +        num_synapses:   number of synapses specified in @synapses
> +        ext:            optional array of Counter Count extensions
> +        num_ext:        number of Counter Count extensions specified in
> +                        ext
> +        priv:           optional private data supplied by driver
> +
> +struct counter_device_ext
> +-------------------------
> +
> +This structure defines a Generic Counter extension attribute. These
> +attributes expose auxiliary configuration and functionality specific to
> +the respective Generic Counter.
> +
> +        name:   attribute name
> +        read:   read callback for this attribute; may be NULL
> +        write:  write callback for this attribute; may be NULL
> +        priv:   data private to the driver
> +
> +struct counter_device
> +---------------------
> +
> +This is the main data structure for a Generic Counter device. Access to
> +all respective Counts, Signals, and Synapses is possible from this
> +structure. This structure requires the configuration of a name, Generic
> +Counter Signals, and Generic Counter Counts:
> +
> +name:           name of the device
> +parent:         optional parent device providing the counters
> +signal_read:    read callback for Signal attribute; may be NULL
> +signal_write:   write callback for Signal attribute; may be NULL
> +count_read:     read callback for Count attribute; may be NULL
> +count_write:    write callback for Count attribute; may be NULL
> +function_get:   function to get the current count function mode. Returns
> +                0 on success and negative error code on error. The index
> +                of the respective Count's returned function mode should
> +                be passed back via the function parameter.
> +function_set:   function to set the count function mode. function is the
> +                index of the requested function mode from the respective
> +                Count's functions array.
> +action_get:     function to get the current action mode. Returns 0 on
> +                success and negative error code on error. The index of
> +                the respective Signal's returned action mode should be
> +                passed back via the action parameter.
> +action_set:     function to set the action mode. action is the index of
> +                the requested action mode from the respective Synapse's
> +                actions array.
> +signals:        array of Signals
> +num_signals:    number of Signals specified in @signals
> +counts:         array of Counts
> +num_counts:     number of Counts specified in @counts
> +ext:            optional array of Counter device extensions
> +num_ext:        number of Counter device extensions specified in ext
> +priv:           optional private data supplied by driver
> +
> +Registration functions
> +----------------------
> +
> +A counter device is registered to the system by passing the respective
> +initialized counter_device structure to the counter_register function;
> +similarly, the counter_unregister function unregisters the respective
> +Counter. The devm_counter_register and devm_counter_unregister functions
> +serve as device memory-managed versions of the counter_register and
> +counter_unregister functions respectively.
> +
> +Implementation
> +==============
> +
> +To support a counter device, a driver must first allocate the available
> +Counter Signals via counter_signal structures. These Signals should
> +be stored as an array and set to the signals array member of an
> +allocated counter_device structure before the Counter is registered to
> +the system.
> +
> +Counter Counts may be allocated via counter_count structures, and
> +respective Counter Signal associations (Synapses) made via
> +counter_synapse structures. Associated counter_synapse structures are
> +stored as an array and set to the the synapses array member of the
> +respective counter_count structure. These counter_count structures are
> +set to the counts array member of an allocated counter_device structure
> +before the Counter is registered to the system.
> +
> +Driver callbacks should be provided to the counter_device structure in
> +order to communicate with the device: to read and write various Signals
> +and Counts, and to set and get the "action mode" and "function mode" for
> +various Synapses and Counts respectively.
> +
> +A defined counter_device structure may be registered to the system by
> +passing it to the counter_register function, and unregistered by passing
> +it to the counter_unregister function. Similarly, the
> +devm_counter_register and devm_counter_unregister functions may be used
> +if device memory-managed registration is desired.
> +
> +Extension sysfs attributes can be created for auxiliary functionality
> +and data by passing in defined counter_device_ext, counter_count_ext,
> +and counter_signal_ext structures. In these cases, the
> +counter_device_ext structure is used for global configuration of the
> +respective Counter device, while the counter_count_ext and
> +counter_signal_ext structures allow for auxiliary exposure and
> +configuration of a specific Count or Signal respectively.
> +
> +Architecture
> +============
> +
> +The counter_init function is called when the generic-counter module is
> +loaded on the system. At this point, a bus_type named "counter" is
> +registered and a dedicated "counter" chrdev region is allocated; these
> +are removed and cleaned-up in the counter_exit function called when the
> +generic-counter module is unloaded from the system.

What's the chrdev for?

> +
> +Counter devices are registered to the system via the counter_register
> +function, and later removed via the counter_unregister function. The
> +counter_register function establishes a unique ID for the Counter device
> +and creates an associated device node under /dev called counterX, where
> +X is the mentioned unique ID. A respective sysfs directory is created
> +for the Counter device with a similar naming scheme:
> +
> +    /sys/bus/counter/devices/counterX
> +
> +Sysfs attributes are created within the counterX directory to expose
> +functionality, configurations, and data relating to the Counts, Signals,
> +and Synapses of the Counter device, as well as options and information
> +for the Counter device itself.
> +
> +For a more detailed breakdown of the available Generic Counter interface
> +sysfs attributes, please refer to the
> +Documentation/ABI/testing/sys-bus-counter-generic-sysfs file.
> +
> +The Signals and Counts associated with the Counter device are registered
> +to the system as well by the counter_register function. The
> +signal_read/signal_write driver callbacks are associated to their
> +respective Signal attributes, while the count_read/count_write and
> +function_get/function_set driver callbacks are associated to their
> +respective Count attributes; similarly, the same is true for the
> +action_get/action_set driver callbacks and their respective Synapse
> +attributes. If a driver callback is left undefined, then the respective
> +read/write permission is left disabled for the relevant attributes.
> +
> +Similarly, extension sysfs attributes are created for the defined
> +counter_device_ext, counter_count_ext, and counter_signal_ext
> +structures that are passed in.
> diff --git a/Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst b/Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst
> index e5c3922d1b6f..e6c5b75c2e03 100644
> --- a/Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst
> +++ b/Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst
> @@ -15,3 +15,4 @@ Contents:
>     buffers
>     triggers
>     triggered-buffers
> +   generic-counter

I would give it a category to itself and not put it under
the iio docs (unless you decide to host in IIO)

> diff --git a/MAINTAINERS b/MAINTAINERS
> index 38da1bc615b3..08eba78057e4 100644
> --- a/MAINTAINERS
> +++ b/MAINTAINERS
> @@ -3665,6 +3665,7 @@ COUNTER INTERFACE
>  M:	William Breathitt Gray <vilhelm.gray@gmail.com>
>  L:	linux-iio@vger.kernel.org
>  S:	Maintained
> +F:	Documentation/driver-api/counter/
>  F:	Documentation/ABI/testing/sysfs-bus-counter-*
>  F:	drivers/iio/counter/
>  F:	include/linux/iio/counter.h

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Patch
diff mbox

diff --git a/Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst b/Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst
new file mode 100644
index 000000000000..219c571e90ce
--- /dev/null
+++ b/Documentation/driver-api/iio/generic-counter.rst
@@ -0,0 +1,434 @@ 
+=========================
+Generic Counter Interface
+=========================
+
+Introduction
+============
+
+Counter devices are prevalent within a diverse spectrum of industries.
+The ubiquitous presence of these devices necessitates a common interface
+and standard of interaction and exposure. This driver API attempts to
+resolve the issue of duplicate code found among existing counter device
+drivers by introducing a generic counter interface for consumption. The
+Generic Counter interface enables drivers to support and expose a common
+set of components and functionality present in counter devices.
+
+Theory
+======
+
+Counter devices can vary greatly in design, but regardless of whether
+some devices are quadrature encoder counters or tally counters, all
+counter devices consist of a core set of components. This core set of
+components, shared by all counter devices, is what forms the essence of
+the Generic Counter interface.
+
+There are three core components to a counter:
+
+        COUNT
+        -----
+        A Count represents the count data for a set of Signals. A Count
+        has a count function mode (e.g. "increase" or "quadrature x4")
+        which represents the update behavior for the count data. A Count
+        also has a set of one or more associated Signals.
+
+        SIGNAL
+        ------
+        A Signal represents a counter input data; this is the data that
+        is typically analyzed by the counter to determine the count
+        data. A Signal may be associated to one or more Counts.
+
+        SYNAPSE
+        -------
+        A Synapse represents the association of a Signal with a
+        respective Count. Signal data affects respective Count data, and
+        the Synapse represents this relationship. The Synapse action
+        mode (e.g. "rising edge" or "double pulse") specifies the Signal
+        data condition which triggers the respective Count's count
+        function evaluation to update the count data. It is possible for
+        the Synapse action mode to be "none" if a Signal is associated
+        with a Count but does not trigger the count function (e.g. the
+        direction signal line for a Pulse-Direction encoding counter).
+
+A counter is defined as a set of input signals associated to count data
+that are generated by the evaluation of the state of the associated
+input signals as defined by the respective count functions. Within the
+context of the Generic Counter interface, a counter consists of Counts
+each associated to a set of Signals, whose respective Synapse instances
+represent the count function update conditions for the associated
+Counts.
+
+Paradigm
+========
+
+The most basic counter device may be expressed as a single Count
+associated with a single Signal via a single Synapse. Take for example
+a counter device which simply accumulates a count of rising edges on a
+source input line.
+
+        Count                Synapse        Signal
+        -----                -------        ------
++---------------------+
+| Data: Count         |    Rising Edge     ________
+| Function: Increase  |  <-------------   / Source \
+|                     |                  ____________
++---------------------+
+
+In this example, the Signal is a source input line with a pulsing
+voltage, while the Count is a persistent count value which is repeatedly
+incremented. The Signal is associated with the respective Count via a
+Synapse. The increase function is triggered by the Signal data condition
+specified by the Synapse -- in this case a rising edge condition on the
+voltage input line. In summary, the counter device existence and
+behavior is aptly represented by respective Count, Signal, and Synapse
+components: a rising edge condition triggers an increase function on an
+accumulating count datum.
+
+A counter device is not limited to a single Signal; in fact, in theory
+many number of Signals may be associated with even a single Count. For
+example, a quadrature encoder counter device can keep track of position
+based on the states of two input lines.
+
+           Count                 Synapse     Signal
+           -----                 -------     ------
++-------------------------+
+| Data: Position          |    Both Edges     ___
+| Function: Quadrature x4 |  <------------   / A \
+|                         |                 _______
+|                         |
+|                         |    Both Edges     ___
+|                         |  <------------   / B \
+|                         |                 _______
++-------------------------+
+
+In this example, two Signals (quadrature encoder lines A and B) are
+associated to a single Count: a rising or falling edge on either A or B
+triggers the "Quadrature x4" function which determines the direction of
+movement and updates the respective position data. The "Quadrature x4"
+function is likely implemented in the hardware of the quadrature encoder
+counter device; the Count, Signals, and Synapses simply represent this
+hardware behavior and functionality.
+
+Signals associated to the same Count can have differing Synapse action
+mode conditions. For example, a quadrature encoder counter device
+operating in a non-quadrature Pulse-Direction mode could have one input
+line dedicated for movement and a second input line dedicated for
+direction.
+
+           Count                   Synapse      Signal
+           -----                   -------      ------
++---------------------------+
+| Data: Position            |    Rising Edge     ___
+| Function: Pulse-Direction |  <-------------   / A \ (Movement)
+|                           |                  _______
+|                           |
+|                           |       None         ___
+|                           |  <-------------   / B \ (Direction)
+|                           |                  _______
++---------------------------+
+
+Only Signal A triggers the "Pulse-Direction" update function, but the
+instantaneous state of Signal B is still required in order to know the
+direction so that the position data may be properly updated. Ultimately,
+both Signals are associated to the same Count via two respective
+Synapses, but only one Synapse has an active action mode condition which
+triggers the respective count function while the other is left with a
+"None" condition action mode to indicate its respective Signal's
+availability for state evaluation despite its non-triggering mode.
+
+The flexibility of Synapses allows for the representation of counters
+whose respective Count Signal relationships would be difficult to
+represent as isolated inputs. For example a tri-color LED color counter
+can easily be represented with three Synapses:
+
+           Count          Synapse      Signal
+           -----          -------      ------
++------------------+
+| Data: Count      |    Both Edges     _______
+| Function: Purple |  <------------   /  Red  \
+|                  |                 ___________
+|                  |
+|                  |    Both Edges     _______
+|                  |  <------------   / Green \
+|                  |                 ___________
+|                  |
+|                  |    Both Edges     _______
+|                  |  <------------   / Blue  \
+|                  |                 ___________
++------------------+
+
+This counter accumulates the number of times the tri-color LED has
+turned to purple. By utilizing the Synapses to associate the three color
+Signals to the single Count, the count function evaluation relationship
+becomes apparent: combined color is checked when an individual color is
+turned on or off, and if only Red and Blue are active then Count datum
+is incremented to indicate the color has now turned to Purple.
+
+Although the examples thus far have been representations of physical
+devices, this is not a necessity. A counter simply represent the
+evaluation (Count) of input data (Signals) triggered by specific
+conditions (Synapses). A counter can be the representation of more
+abstract components.
+
+For example, suppose a counter representation is desired for a DNA
+sequence analysizer which detects possible genetic diseases.
+
+        Count                     Synapse            Signal
+        -----                     -------            ------
++---------------------+
+| Data: Diseases      |    Gene Transcript (EST)     _____
+| Function: Cancers   |  <-----------------------   / DNA \ (GAAGTGC...)
+|                     |                            _________
++---------------------+
+
+In this scenario, the Signal is a stream of DNA nucleotide bases (As,
+Ts, Cs, and Gs), the Synapse action modes consist of the various
+expressed sequence tags (ESTs), and the Count is a list of diseases
+discovered (in this particular example the function is evaluating for
+possible cancers). Note how the Signal in this example does not
+represent a physical voltage line, nor does the Synapse action mode
+represent a physical voltage line state change, nor does the Count
+represent a strictly decimal data value.
+
+The DNA sequence analysizer example is contrived to illustrate the
+flexibility of the generic counter paradigm by demonstrating its
+capability of representing abstract concepts; however, physical devices
+are likely to be more fitting for such a representation.
+
+The key concept is that the Signal, Synapse, and Count are abstract
+representations which do not need to be closely married to their
+respective physical sources. This allows the user of a counter to
+divorce themselves from the nuances of physical components (such as
+whether an input line is differential or single-ended) and focus on the
+core idea of what the data and process represent (e.g. an accumulated
+count of rising edges).
+
+Userspace Interface
+===================
+
+Several sysfs attributes are generated by the Generic Counter interface,
+and reside under the /sys/bus/counter/devices/counterX directory, where
+counterX refers to the respective counter device. Please see
+Documentation/ABI/testing/sys-bus-counter-generic-sysfs for detailed
+information on each Generic Counter interface sysfs attribute.
+
+Through these sysfs attributes, programs and scripts may interact with
+the Generic Counter paradigm Counts, Signals, and Synapses of respective
+counter devices.
+
+Driver API
+==========
+
+Driver authors may utilize the Generic Counter interface in their code
+by including the include/linux/iio/counter.h header file. This header
+file provides several core data structures and function prototypes for
+defining a generic counter.
+
+
+struct counter_signal_ext
+-------------------------
+
+This structure defines a Generic Counter Signal extension attribute.
+These attributes expose auxiliary configuration and functionality
+specific to the respective Generic Counter Signal.
+
+        name:   Attribute name
+        read:   Read callback for this attribute; may be NULL
+        write:  Write callback for this attribute; may be NULL
+        priv:   Data private to the driver
+
+struct counter_signal
+---------------------
+
+This structure defines a Generic Counter Signal component. Typically,
+this will correlate with an input channel on a physical counter device.
+This structure is the simplest of the Generic Counter paradigm core
+components to define with only two structure members which require
+explicit configuration:
+
+        id:             unique ID used to identify signal
+        name:           device-specific signal name
+        ext:            optional array of Counter Signal extensions
+        num_ext:        number of Counter Signal extensions specified in
+                        ext
+        priv:           optional private data supplied by driver
+
+struct counter_synapse
+----------------------
+
+This structure defines a Generic Counter Synapse component. To properly
+utilize this structure, action modes and an associated Signal must be
+defined:
+
+        action:         current action mode
+        actions:        available action modes
+        num_actions:    number of action modes specified in actions
+        signal:         pointer to associated signal
+
+struct counter_count_ext
+------------------------
+
+This structure defines a Generic Counter Count extension attribute.
+These attributes expose auxiliary configuration and functionality
+specific to the respective Generic Counter Count.
+
+        name:   attribute name
+        read:   read callback for this attribute; may be NULL
+        write:  write callback for this attribute; may be NULL
+        priv:   data private to the driver
+
+struct counter_count
+--------------------
+
+This structure defines a Generic Counter Count component. Typically,
+this will correlate with the read data (the "count" value) provided by a
+physical counter device. This structure requires the explicit
+configuration of an ID, name, function modes (the function triggered on
+a Synapse action condition), and a set of Synapses for the associated
+Signals:
+
+        id:             unique ID used to identify Count
+        name:           device-specific Count name
+        function:       current function mode
+        functions:      available function modes
+        num_functions:  number of functions specified in @functions
+        synapses:       array of synapses for initialization
+        num_synapses:   number of synapses specified in @synapses
+        ext:            optional array of Counter Count extensions
+        num_ext:        number of Counter Count extensions specified in
+                        ext
+        priv:           optional private data supplied by driver
+
+struct counter_device_ext
+-------------------------
+
+This structure defines a Generic Counter extension attribute. These
+attributes expose auxiliary configuration and functionality specific to
+the respective Generic Counter.
+
+        name:   attribute name
+        read:   read callback for this attribute; may be NULL
+        write:  write callback for this attribute; may be NULL
+        priv:   data private to the driver
+
+struct counter_device
+---------------------
+
+This is the main data structure for a Generic Counter device. Access to
+all respective Counts, Signals, and Synapses is possible from this
+structure. This structure requires the configuration of a name, Generic
+Counter Signals, and Generic Counter Counts:
+
+name:           name of the device
+parent:         optional parent device providing the counters
+signal_read:    read callback for Signal attribute; may be NULL
+signal_write:   write callback for Signal attribute; may be NULL
+count_read:     read callback for Count attribute; may be NULL
+count_write:    write callback for Count attribute; may be NULL
+function_get:   function to get the current count function mode. Returns
+                0 on success and negative error code on error. The index
+                of the respective Count's returned function mode should
+                be passed back via the function parameter.
+function_set:   function to set the count function mode. function is the
+                index of the requested function mode from the respective
+                Count's functions array.
+action_get:     function to get the current action mode. Returns 0 on
+                success and negative error code on error. The index of
+                the respective Signal's returned action mode should be
+                passed back via the action parameter.
+action_set:     function to set the action mode. action is the index of
+                the requested action mode from the respective Synapse's
+                actions array.
+signals:        array of Signals
+num_signals:    number of Signals specified in @signals
+counts:         array of Counts
+num_counts:     number of Counts specified in @counts
+ext:            optional array of Counter device extensions
+num_ext:        number of Counter device extensions specified in ext
+priv:           optional private data supplied by driver
+
+Registration functions
+----------------------
+
+A counter device is registered to the system by passing the respective
+initialized counter_device structure to the counter_register function;
+similarly, the counter_unregister function unregisters the respective
+Counter. The devm_counter_register and devm_counter_unregister functions
+serve as device memory-managed versions of the counter_register and
+counter_unregister functions respectively.
+
+Implementation
+==============
+
+To support a counter device, a driver must first allocate the available
+Counter Signals via counter_signal structures. These Signals should
+be stored as an array and set to the signals array member of an
+allocated counter_device structure before the Counter is registered to
+the system.
+
+Counter Counts may be allocated via counter_count structures, and
+respective Counter Signal associations (Synapses) made via
+counter_synapse structures. Associated counter_synapse structures are
+stored as an array and set to the the synapses array member of the
+respective counter_count structure. These counter_count structures are
+set to the counts array member of an allocated counter_device structure
+before the Counter is registered to the system.
+
+Driver callbacks should be provided to the counter_device structure in
+order to communicate with the device: to read and write various Signals
+and Counts, and to set and get the "action mode" and "function mode" for
+various Synapses and Counts respectively.
+
+A defined counter_device structure may be registered to the system by
+passing it to the counter_register function, and unregistered by passing
+it to the counter_unregister function. Similarly, the
+devm_counter_register and devm_counter_unregister functions may be used
+if device memory-managed registration is desired.
+
+Extension sysfs attributes can be created for auxiliary functionality
+and data by passing in defined counter_device_ext, counter_count_ext,
+and counter_signal_ext structures. In these cases, the
+counter_device_ext structure is used for global configuration of the
+respective Counter device, while the counter_count_ext and
+counter_signal_ext structures allow for auxiliary exposure and
+configuration of a specific Count or Signal respectively.
+
+Architecture
+============
+
+The counter_init function is called when the generic-counter module is
+loaded on the system. At this point, a bus_type named "counter" is
+registered and a dedicated "counter" chrdev region is allocated; these
+are removed and cleaned-up in the counter_exit function called when the
+generic-counter module is unloaded from the system.
+
+Counter devices are registered to the system via the counter_register
+function, and later removed via the counter_unregister function. The
+counter_register function establishes a unique ID for the Counter device
+and creates an associated device node under /dev called counterX, where
+X is the mentioned unique ID. A respective sysfs directory is created
+for the Counter device with a similar naming scheme:
+
+    /sys/bus/counter/devices/counterX
+
+Sysfs attributes are created within the counterX directory to expose
+functionality, configurations, and data relating to the Counts, Signals,
+and Synapses of the Counter device, as well as options and information
+for the Counter device itself.
+
+For a more detailed breakdown of the available Generic Counter interface
+sysfs attributes, please refer to the
+Documentation/ABI/testing/sys-bus-counter-generic-sysfs file.
+
+The Signals and Counts associated with the Counter device are registered
+to the system as well by the counter_register function. The
+signal_read/signal_write driver callbacks are associated to their
+respective Signal attributes, while the count_read/count_write and
+function_get/function_set driver callbacks are associated to their
+respective Count attributes; similarly, the same is true for the
+action_get/action_set driver callbacks and their respective Synapse
+attributes. If a driver callback is left undefined, then the respective
+read/write permission is left disabled for the relevant attributes.
+
+Similarly, extension sysfs attributes are created for the defined
+counter_device_ext, counter_count_ext, and counter_signal_ext
+structures that are passed in.
diff --git a/Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst b/Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst
index e5c3922d1b6f..e6c5b75c2e03 100644
--- a/Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst
+++ b/Documentation/driver-api/iio/index.rst
@@ -15,3 +15,4 @@  Contents:
    buffers
    triggers
    triggered-buffers
+   generic-counter
diff --git a/MAINTAINERS b/MAINTAINERS
index 38da1bc615b3..08eba78057e4 100644
--- a/MAINTAINERS
+++ b/MAINTAINERS
@@ -3665,6 +3665,7 @@  COUNTER INTERFACE
 M:	William Breathitt Gray <vilhelm.gray@gmail.com>
 L:	linux-iio@vger.kernel.org
 S:	Maintained
+F:	Documentation/driver-api/counter/
 F:	Documentation/ABI/testing/sysfs-bus-counter-*
 F:	drivers/iio/counter/
 F:	include/linux/iio/counter.h