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Posts tagged with 'Development Tools'

12 Sep, 2011
Embedded Software

VDC survey

Posted by Colin Walls

Colin Walls

As I have mentioned before, I am always interested in user surveys, as they do offer some kind of glimpse into what is going on the world of embedded software development. The recently published VDC Embedded Engineering Survey [summary available here] shows up some interesting results and trends. However, it does, like with many surveys, raise nearly as many questions as it provides answers … One

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RTOS, VDC, USB, Development Tools

22 Aug, 2011
Embedded Software

Instrumentation

Posted by Colin Walls

Colin Walls Embedded software development tools are important to all developers and a topic that I frequently discuss [like here]. The way such tools are described by vendors is interesting. For example, there might be a reference to an “optimizing compiler”. That is rather meaningless, as all compilers are optimizing to at least some degree. For an embedded compiler, the important factors are the quality … Read More

RTOS, Development Tools, Debugging, profiling, Nucleus

8 Aug, 2011
Embedded Software

Get packing

Posted by Colin Walls

Colin Walls I have frequently made the observation that a key difference between embedded and desktop system programming is variability: every Windows PC is essentially the same, whereas every embedded system is different. There are a number of implications of this variability tools need to be more sophisticated and flexible; programmers need to be ready to accommodate the specific requirements of their system; … Read More

Development Tools

21 Mar, 2011

Colin Walls A constant challenge I have found, when teaching or mentoring people, is to avoid making assumptions about what they know. I have found that it is so easy to assume that, because something is obvious to me, it is clearly apparent to everyone else. On numerous occasions I have discovered that this not to be the case. Of course, the best response to this realization is not to treat everyone else as stupid, … Read More

Development Tools

14 Mar, 2011
Embedded Software

Why move to C++?

Posted by Colin Walls

Colin Walls

As I am on vacation this week, I thought that I would leave behind a short note, which might provoke some discussion. The most widely used programming language for embedded systems continues to be C. I observe great interest in the use of C++ and have frequently written and talked about the subject. Its adoption is also progressing steadily, though much more slowly than anticipated a decade ago. With

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Development Tools

31 Jan, 2011

Colin Walls Embedded systems have been around for nearly 40 years and, over that time, there has always been the need for embedded software development tools. In the beginning, the source of these tools was almost exclusively the chip manufacturers. Companies like Intel, Motorola and Zilog supplied the development software and all the necessary kit to do debugging - anyone remember the ubiquitous “blue boxes”? … Read More

Development Tools

24 Jan, 2011
Embedded Software

C++ - for loops

Posted by Colin Walls

Colin Walls

I am [mostly] a fan of using C++ for embedded applications. I believe its use needs care and I have written about this before. Broadly, I feel that it offers many simple improvements over C and appropriate use of object oriented techniques can be very beneficial. Today I want to talk about the place of C++ as a “better C language”. There are numerous syntactical improvements that can be

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Development Tools

22 Nov, 2010
Embedded Software

Firmly in line

Posted by Colin Walls

Colin Walls

A common compiler optimization is the inclusion of a function’s code at the location(s) from where the function is called, instead of just having calls to the code located elsewhere: inlining. This provides a speed advantage, as the call/return sequence is eliminated, but may increase the memory footprint, if the function is more than a few instructions and is called more than once. I have written

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Inline, Development Tools

25 Jan, 2010

Colin Walls There are two aspects of any product that give me great pleasure: good design and quality of manufacture. This applies to just about anything: a pair of shoes, a car, a house , a piece of software … Assessing both these parameters can be hard. A pair of shoes must look good, be comfortable to wear and last well; this takes time to evaluate. A car needs to be enjoyable to ride in, drive well and offer … Read More

RTOS, Development Tools, Networking, Evaluation

7 Dec, 2009
Embedded Software

IP/ESC'09

Posted by Colin Walls

Colin Walls

Last week I attended a conference in Grenoble, France. For some years there has been an annual event focussed on intellectual property [IP] and the broad area hardware design reusability. This year it was extended to encompass embedded systems as well - the last of the three days was largely dedicated to this topic. I submitted some proposals for papers and two were accepted. Hence my attendance. A

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Android, Development Tools

23 Nov, 2009
Embedded Software

8 bits anyone?

Posted by Colin Walls

Colin Walls It was well over 10 years ago and I was working a trade show booth with a techie colleague. It was quiet and we were bored. We chatted about things that interested us and eventually settled on our common ground: embedded software. He made a reference to “back in the 8 bit days”. I questioned this: “We are in the 8 bit days now!”. He did not believe me … It was not that he thought I was deceiving him … Read More

Development Tools, Low Power, Multicore, RTOS

19 Oct, 2009

Colin Walls Today, for a change, instead of discussing some embedded software technology, I would like to put forward a concept for a product. It is an embedded system, which I believe could sell in high volumes. Maybe someone reading this blog would like to develop it. I am happy to waive any rights to royalties on the idea so long as we have an understanding that you will use Mentor Graphics products in your … Read More

Nucleus, Wi-Fi, RTOS, Development Tools, Nucleus USB, Nucleus Kernel, USB

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