What's New on Embedded.com (7-22-11 to 7-28-11) - Embedded.com

What’s New on Embedded.com (7-22-11 to 7-28-11)


Embedded Newsletter for 07-28-11

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July 28, 2011

New on Embedded.com


Robert S. Grimes

Designing with core-based high-density FPGAs

Nithin Kumar Mada and Harsha Jagadish, Microchip Technology

Waking up a capacitive touch-sensing device with an MCU peripheral


The first rule of UI design

Dumbing down embedded design

How to enforce coding standards automatically

Making your application code multicore ready

Editor's Note

Bernard Cole Bernard Cole
Site Editor

This week’s treasure trove of articles from Embedded Systems Design and online includes such topics as capacitive touch sensor design, multicore code development, and Linux (open) migration tips. You can download a digital version of ESD on the Embedded.com home page.

Designing with core-based high density FPGAs , ” by Robert S. Grimes, is a down-in-the-dirt, technically gritty account of his experiences on one of his design projects. Such first person accounts are the soul of Embedded.com. I am always looking for contributions of this sort, large or small. Call or email with your ideas and we will work together on telling your stories.

Ron Wilson’s “Dumbing down embedded design” is sure to trigger lively debate. In his report from the future he talks about the recent Design Automation Conference and suggests that transformative changes are underway to how embedded software development is done. He warns software programmers to be ready with a transition strategy.

In “How to enforce coding standards automatically , ” Michael Barr provides advice on how to reconfigure your static analyzer to enforce code quality standards. In “ The first rule of UI design,” Jack Ganssle emphasizes the importance of keeping the end user in mind.

Contributor David Kleidermacher in “ Forking your friends”provides advice on how to deal with insider threats, an often ignored aspect of security strategy”. In “ The Android Adventure , ” Colin Holland puts out a call for Android apps that electronics engineers can use in their jobs, but also apps you like just for fun. He will be running them on his new Android-based tablet and report his experiences in later columns.

Design How Tos

Designing with core-based high-density FPGAs

One engineer's adventures designing with microprocessor-based FPGAs.

Waking up a capacitive touch-sensing device with an MCU peripheral

When a capacitive touch screen goes into sleep or standby mode to save energy, how can you design the system to wake up quickly without degrading its performance or burning a lot of power. Here are two options: a traditional method and a new MCU-based method.

Making your application code multicore ready

In this product how-to article Vector Fabrics' Paul Stavers describes a more efficient way to parallelize code for embedded multicore designs illustrating the process using the company's online tool to parallelize Google's VP8 video decoder.

Migrating from proprietary to Linux (Open) development platforms

Linux specialist Rajaram Regupathy provides some tips on making the transition from a design based on a proprietary RTOS to one that makes use of the Linux (Open) standard.

Using virtualization to consolidate data traffic on a single network appliance

How Napatech used VMWare's virtualization software to consolidate multiple network appliances and their traffic flows onto a single physical platform

Atomic-scale films critical to transistors

Already at 28nm, atomic-layer deposition has emerged as a critical new technology in making transistors possible.

Guidelines for obtaining IEC/UL 60730 certification for self-test library implementations

Selecting the appropriate MCU and controller functions can reduce the time and effort needed to achieve compliance to the IEC 60730 standard. The result is often a shorter time to market for many consumer and household systems.

Want to go Green? Reuse Powerline infrastructure and get there fast

If you are an engineer who cares about, or are working on, three of the most important Green technologies of our lifetime – Smart Grid, Solar, and LED Lighting – the ability to reuse the existing Powerline communications (PLC) infrastructure is an essential element for adding intelligence to applications based on these technologies.

Haptics technology: picking up good vibrations

Understand the existing and new techniques for implementing this motion-transducer function

Touch-screen technologies enable greater user/device interaction

Understand the workings of capacitive- and resistive-screen sensing, as well as the role of haptics

Pro audio techniques applied in mobile devices to improve sound quality

This article describes various techniques that can be applied to solve the challenge of achieving good sound quality from the small low-profile speakers in mobile devices, and how they can aid in improving communication as well as entertainment.

Tips and Trends: Implement design process changes to meet demands of LTE/LTE-Advanced

While LTE/LTE-Advanced has urged a transition from single-core to multi-core solutions, simple bus structures to complex memory and interconnect, embedded software, as well as built-in I/Os, another important change is necessary. This involves changes in the design process itself—read on.

Embedded Systems Bookshelf


Embedded Books Reading Room
Bernard Cole's favorite links to book excerpts.


Engineer's Bookshelf
Airport fiction blows. A look at books other engineers are reading and why you should read them, too. Recommend and write a review yourself. E-mail Brian Fuller.

Jack Ganssle's Bookshelf
A list of book reviews by Jack Ganssle, contributing technical editor of Embedded Systems Design and Embedded.com.

Max's Cool Beans
Clive “Max” Maxfield, the editor on Programmable Logic DesignLine, often writes about interesting books.

Product News

VIA launches dual core VB8004 Mini-ITX Mainboard

VIA Technologies, Inc has announced a dual core version of the low power VIA VB8004 Mini-ITX board. Coupling the 1.6GHz VIA Nano X2 E-series processor with the VIA VX900 media system processor, the VIA VB8004 provides a high performance and highly scalable solution for advanced digital signage and gaming systems.

ITTIA DB SQL eases replication in embedded apps

ITTIA DB SQL is the newest version of ITTIA's database for embedded systems and intelligent devices, with added advanced high availability functionality and replication features.

Atmel adds five SAM9 MCUs with DDR2 support, enhanced LCD control, soft modem implementation

Atmel Corporation has added five new devices to the Atmel SAM9 ARM926-based family of microcontrollers (MCUs): the SAM9G15, SAM9G25, SAM9G35, SAM9X25, and SAM9X35.

GreenPeak's reference design for plug-and-play USB Stick enables fast, low-cost RF4CE implementation

GreenPeak Technologies' RF4CE (ZigBee RF4CE industry standard) USB stick reference design enables a quick RF4CE USB stick implementation with minimal efforts.

DisplayLink USB virtual graphics technology enables low-power, low-cost embedded displays

DisplayLink USB virtual graphics technology enables embedded applications to provide detailed information to the consumer in multiple displays in different or remote locations without requiring power cords, delivering current via a USB 2.0 or USB 3.0 cable.

Wind River's new Android test development kit replicates human interactions

Wind River's UX Test Development Kit is an Eclipse-based test-authoring environment enabling the rapid creation of automated test scripts for Android devices, applications and browser-based web content.

TI's highly integrated piezo haptic driver sports ultra-fast startup time, wide driving capabilities

The DRV8662 from Texas Instruments Incorporated is a highly integrated piezo haptic

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