Embedded Topics

May 1, 2009

Find your low-power path

Semiconductor vendors face increasing demands to lower power consumption. This trend has intensified in the last couple of years with the rejuvenation of the ‘green’ movement. In response, the industry has been getting smarter about low-voltage design, current-saving techniques for both the circuit and process levels, and coordinated power management. Meanwhile, programmers are concentrating on […]

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March 1, 2009

The power-aware OS

The article describes the context and need for embedded operating systems that are more responsive to the power management demands placed on today’s electronic devices. It reviews the design objectives for the two main types of power management, reactive and proactive, and examines how both can be implemented. For system developers designing portable electronic devices, […]

March 1, 2009

Choose, but choose wisely

The consumer sector has become a reliable bellwether for the state of the electronics industry. However you slice it, the latest data does not paint a pretty picture. With the publication of its latest U.S. market forecast, the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) provided data that put the typical knock-on effect of a recession into concrete […]

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March 1, 2009

FPGA-based speech encrypting and decrypting embedded system

The Texas A&M team describes an FPGA embedded system design project intended to assess the technology’s suitability for use in real-time, high-performance applications. The test application is a speech encryption system intended for use in military and high-security environments. The team used a Xilinx Virtex II Pro platform FPGA for the project, and was also […]

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March 1, 2009

Mainstream not niche

Green design will be one of the enduring themes of 2009, or so we are told. As hard-faced as it might sound, though, it is hard to see this theme getting the attention it needs right now. My problem with the whole concept is that it currently seems to attract a premium at just about […]

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March 1, 2009

A profitable discipline

The software food chain Software has become a ubiquitous part of many products and services, some of which are distributed and used on a massive scale. Think of cloud computing, online banking and the engines for today’s cellphones and cameras. Competition requires that such new products are developed more quickly than ever before and yet […]

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March 1, 2009

Ahead of the game

The 2009 Embedded World conference and exhibition in Nuremberg, Germany (March 3-5) has managed to maintain much of its scale despite the global downturn. Some speakers have apparently been pulled out by their companies—the most notable contingent, sadly, coming from the USA—but overall the exhibition has expanded by 5% in terms of its physical size […]

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December 1, 2008

Designing an interactive GUI

Consumers want high-end GUIs on portable devices, but most MCUs—even those at 32bit—do not have the capacity to support embedded versions of these on their own. The article outlines the collaboration between Atmel, which has a family of customizable MCUs, and Amulet Technologies, a specialist in GUIs based on a compressed version of HTML. It […]

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December 1, 2008

Finding the right partner

The complexity of delivering full system products means that more and more companies are looking to outsource some activities to concentrate engineering resources on areas that enable greater product differentiation. For small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) in particular, outsourcing provides access to resources and skills that allow them to undertake projects that would be otherwise […]

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December 1, 2008

No double-quick growth for DDR3

Lane Mason Marc Greenberg DDR3 DRAMs still languish around the edges of the market despite their supposed attraction in terms of power and performance, the widespread availability of product, and the presence of a supposedly ‘evolved’ ecosystem and implementation infrastructure. Just over 18 months ago, Intel launched a major Go To DDR3 market initiative at […]

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