The business of embedded design (for now) is low power

In “2012 will be the year of power, again“, Brett Cline of Forte Design Systems notes that – among other factors – as transistor geometries move into the 10 to 40 nm range, the problem of providing more functionality and performance at low power on increasingly untethered mobile and wireless embedded devices gets more difficult. Recent articles by designers from the likes of Cadence, Synopsys, Apache Design, and Mentor Graphicstell me that EDA companies are positioning themselves to take on the challenge.

But if 2012 is the year of low power for EDA companies, it has been the decade (and more) of low power challenges for embedded systems developers. As far back as a 2001 Embedded.com article on “Low power design ” by Mike Willey and Kris Staffford, developers have faced the challenges with an impressive range of imaginative techniques for power management.

Many of these ideas have been chronicled in design articles, white papers, and webinars on Embedded.com. and featured in recent Tech Focus newsletters. Of the many contributions, my Editor's Top Picks, representing the quality and gritty design focus embedded developers deserve are:

Optimal digital power control using LLC resonant converters
Taking advantage of new low-power modes on advanced MCUs
Energy Efficient Computing
From power management ICs to high efficiency power SoCs

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