Embedded.com Tech Focus Newsletter (5-31-11): Programmer’s Toolbox: math for programmers

Embedded Newsletter for 05-31-11

» Click here to view online I » Forward to a friend I » Sign up for an EE Times Newsletter

Share this Newsletter:

facebook linkedin twitter digg

May 31, 2011

Tech Focus: Fun in Mathland with Jack Crenshaw


The changing face of Mathcad

Why all the math?

Making It Work

I think I get it

Getting It, Part Deux

Editor's Note

Bernard Cole Bernard Cole
Site Editor

One of Embedded.com’s regular contributors is Jack Crenshaw, author of the monthly “Programmer’s Toolbox ” column. This month he is writing about “The changing face of Mathcad .”

I always have fun reading Jack’s columns relating to the use of Mathcad and Matlab – two of Jack’s favorite signal analysis tools – and how he uses them to analyze real-world signals and convert them to mathematical formulations useful in an embedded systems design.

Of course, my idea of fun is similar to that of the village idiot who, when asked why he is banging his head against a wall, says “Because it feels so good when I stop. ” The relief I feel when I come to the end of one of Jack’s brain-numbing columns is my equivalent of ceasing to bang my head against a wall.

Paradoxically, this pleasurable relief is often multiplied twofold: having struggled to follow his train of thought, by the time I get to the end I realize that as difficult as the algorithm is, I finally – as Jack said in one of his columns – “get it . ” And then there is the pleasure of realizing that my understanding of some aspect of embedded system design has been enriched.

If this kind of torture is fun for you, in the Highlights and Commentary sections are some of the columns Jack has written in which he puts Mathcad and Matlab to work on various signal processing problems. And for even more fun, I’ve included a number of recent embedded systems design articles in which the use of such tools played an important role. Of these my Editor’s Top Picks are:

How to use an FPGA to test a PLL band calibration algorithm
Generate stepper motor speed profiles in real time
Use of filter capacitors to clean up voltage source signals
Using object oriented MATLAB for DSP

To get more visibility on Embedded.com for your new hardware and product introductions, be sure to send your press releases to Embedded.com Products Editor Toni McConnel at toni@techrite-associates.com. To submit ideas for design articles and product how-to’s contact me at bccole@acm.org.

Design How Tos

How to use an FPGA to test a PLL band calibration algorithm

Prototyping an ASIC design first on an FPGA is not only useful for verification but allows more room for algorithm experimentation.

Generate stepper-motor speed profiles in real time

Using a mid-range PIC microcontroller, this article describes a new algorithm for stepper-motor acceleration that allows speed profiles to be parameterized and calculated in real time.

Effective use of filter capacitors to clean up voltage source signals in portable consumer designs

Spacing between components in portable designs is making it difficult to effectively separate digital and analog circuits, requiring more effective use of filter capacitors to filter digital noise to get a clean voltage source as the power supply for analog circuits.

Using object-oriented MATLAB for DSP

This hands-on how-to demonstrates how to use object-oriented programming features of Matlab 2008a to model C++ digital signal processing solutions.

A Simplified Algorithm for State Space Circuit Analysis

Robert R. Boyd provide a shortcut method to define the circuit state-space arrays, after which analysis can proceed directly to dc, ac, and transient responses with minimal effort. The method considerably reduces the amount of algebra required when compared to conventional state-space circuit analysis.

Frequency domain tutorial, part 1: Dealing with ambiguity

Here's what you need to know about the mathematics and notation of FFTs and the discrete frequency domain. We start by discussing the ambiguities of discrete signals.

Resonant Inverter Modeling for Closed-Loop Electronic Ballasts

J. Marcos Alonso of the Universidad de Oviedo, Spain, describes amethodology for obtaining large- and small-signal models of resonantinverters, used to design electronic ballasts.

Static Converter Optimization

Analyzing power converters using time-domain simulation is lengthy and very memory-intensive. C. Larouci and colleages from the Laboratoire d'Electrotechnique de Grenoble, France show how to analyze a flyback circuit using analytical models to optimize the volume of the circuit under EMC and loss constraints.

Modeling and simulation of magnetoresistive sensor systems (Part 1 of 2)

Understand the interaction of the electrical, magnetic, and mechanical components of this widely used sensor system.

Complex matrix inversion on the StarCore SC3850 DSP

Complex matrix inversion is used in LTE, WiMAX, and other communication applications. Here's how to do efficient 4×4 complex matrix inversion on the StarCore SC3850. Source code and a MATLAB reference model are included.

Background subtraction, part 1: MATLAB models

We implement three background subtraction algorithms in MATLAB: frame difference, approximate median, and mixture of Gaussians. We provide m-code and test videos showing how each works.

Countdown to ESC Chicago 2011

ESC Chicago 2011 kicks off in less than 2 weeks with Tutorials starting on Monday, June 6th and the Expo opening on Tuesday, June 7th. We are putting the finishing touches on the outstanding line-up of content and special events, and we hope you'll join us for the most valuable and efficient professional development you will experience all year.  http://esc.eetimes.com/chicago/?cid=generic

Conference Tracks

  • Designing for Embedded Linux or Android
  • Graphics, Displays, and Lighting
  • Medical Systems
  • Networking and Connectivity
  • Open Source Software
  • Project Management
  • Real-Time System Development
  • Robotics and Motion Control
  • Safety and Security in a Stuxnet World
  • Software Debugging Techniques

View Track Descriptions:  http://esc.eetimes.com/chicago/sessions_by_track 

Free Expo Pass & Conference Discounts
It's not too late to register for a free Expo Pass, which will give you access to the combined ESC and Sensors Exhibit Floor,
Keynotes, Speed Trainings, Teardowns and Sponsored Sessions. Plus you can save 20% off current ESC conference prices by registering with promo code ESC20.
Register Now:  https://escchicago.reg.ubmelectronics.com/prereg/2011/registrations?cid=generic

10 Reasons to Attend ESC Chicago

  1. 40+ Technical Classes  http://schedule-chicago.esc.eetimes.com/
  2. Expo floor shared with Sensors Conference & Expo  http://s36.a2zinc.net/clients/questex/Sensors2011/public/fp.aspx?ID=192&sortMenu=103000
  3. In-Depth Tutorials   http://esc.eetimes.com/chicago/chicago/node/151
  4. ESC Theater with Teardowns, Giveaways & more!  http://esc.eetimes.com/chicago/ESC_Theater
  5. Thought-provoking keynote from Dr. Hugh Herr on “The New Era of Human 2.0: New Minds, New   Bodies, New Identities”   http://esc.eetimes.com/chicago/keynote_addresses
  6. All New Speed Trainings: fast but in-depth training on test driven development, agile methods, and Android. http://eetevents.com/portal/wts/cemciv2c6to6edevrawAD76c8wkvvd
  7. Agile Embedded Software Development sponsored session taught by IBM Rational's Bruce Powell Douglass http://esc.eetimes.com/chicago/chicago/sponsored_sessions
  8. Just added Debugging Embedded Systems: isolating errors through oscilloscope requirements sponsored session from Rohde & Schwarz  http://esc.eetimes.com/chicago/chicago/sponsored_sessions
  9. Keynote on “The New Printed Electronics Paradigm: Your Opportunities” from Dr. Raghu Das   http://esc.eetimes.com/chicago/keynote_addresses
  10. An all-star cast of speakers including Dan Saks, Bill Gatliff, David Kalinsky & more  http://schedule-chicago.esc.eetimes.com/speaker

Don't Forget the Networking Breakfast…
Start your days off right with a networking breakfast in the foyer of the Keynote room. Reconnect with colleagues, mingle with speakers, meet industry press – all before the event begins!
Times: Tuesday, June 7 & Wednesday, June 8 • 8:00am – 9:00am (prior to Keynote sessions)
Location: Foyer of the Keynote room

Maximize Your Experience at ESC Chicago
There is still time to upgrade to an ESC Chicago conference pass. Register now and save 20% on the conference pass of your choice*. Your Promo Code: UPGRADE.

Expo Hall Hours
Tuesday, June 7 • 10:00am – 5:00pm
Wednesday, June 8 • 10:00am – 3:00pm

Every day something new is added, so be sure to visit the ESC Chicago 2011 website for last minute updates.
We look forward to seeing you in Chicago!

Register Now:

ESC Silicon Valley 2011 Virtual Conference

See Steve Wozniak's fireside chat and a selection of top-rated sessions from ESC, all from the convenience of your desktop. Cost = Free.Sign up for virtual conference.

Presented by: ESC Silicon Valley
Live Date: Thursday, June 16, 2011, 8am PT – 3pm PT
On-Demand: June 17, 2011 – December 27, 2011
URL: http://e.ubmelectronics.com/escsv
Conference Chair: Ron Wilson, Editorial Director, Embedded Systems Conferences


Generate C and C++ code automatically courtesy of MathWorks

MathWorks just unveiled three automatic source code-generation products designed to take days and even weeks off of engineering projects.

Engine simulation software gets additional functionality

Automotive design software vendor dSpace (Paderborn, Germany) has announced new functions for its parameterization software ModelDesk. The enhancements will help engine simulation engineers to boost their productivity.

MathWorks goes all out for signal processing

Launching new capabilities for RF modeling, streaming applications, and FPGA design flow, MathWorks supports algorithm-intensive wireless and multimedia system designs.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.