Why you didn’t get the RTOS business and other embedded software stories

Series of blogs related to embedded software development and power management, written by Colin Walls, Software Technologist at Mentor, a Siemens business

  • Heterogenous Multicore - Untangling the Technology and Terminology

    This is attractive to the embedded systems developer, as CPUs may be deployed to the parts of an application for which they are best suited.

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  • How to Choose an Embedded Operating System

    Almost all modern embedded systems are built using an operating system (OS) of some sort. This means that the selection of that OS tends to occur early in the design process. How do you choose an OS?

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  • Wary of Exception Handling in C++?

    The Exception Handling System (EHS) in C++ has absolutely nothing to be with exceptions in the sense of being hardware interrupts.

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  • Automotive Embedded Systems – Lots of Standards

    The auto industry has a complex supply chain, so compliance with standards is easier to manage than individual, very detailed specifications.

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  • Power Saving Modes for Embedded Systems

    Power management's importance is largely driven by the requirements to extend battery life for handheld devices, but environmental hazards, heat dissipation, etc., are raising concerns.

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  • How safe is your car?

    Although I focus on embedded software in this blog, an understanding of how such sensors are organized is useful.

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  • Device: Test Thyself

    Self-testing is different for every embedded device. The only constant is the likelihood of failure.

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  • What is endianness?

    Lessons learned from experience – commonly from solving a problem – are often so much more effective than any amount of reading in books (or blogs!) – and this is how I learned about endianness.

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  • Blinking good

    User interaction with an embedded system might be something very slick - touch screen LCDs seem to be fitted to everything nowadays. But sometimes a simple LED indicator is enough.

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  • A brief history of embedded software development

    Open source plays a big role here. And it's free, right?

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  • The power pyramid

    The power pyramid

    Power consumption of embedded systems continues to be a hot topic (no pun intended). And there’s one aspect of designing for low power that should be placed under the spotlight—the Power Pyramid.

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  • Taking a nap: Low power design now falls to software developers

    Low power design, until only recently, would have been considered purely a hardware issue, but it is now very much on the agenda for software developers.

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  • A powerful phone

    Smart phones are ubiquitous and it is worth considering how their design has been influenced by consideration of power.

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  • How many rubber trees are owned by the Ford Motor Company?

    There is a good, albeit rather general, rule that applies to the management of a successful business: focus on what you do well, then do it better than everybody else.

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  • Keep smiling with the iBrush

    Today, for a change, instead of discussing some embedded software technology, I would like to put forward a concept for a new product.

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  • Simulation: Is it better than the real thing?

    Simulation: Is it better than the real thing?

    If a hardware design flaw is located late in the development process, it may be too late to fix it economically, so the only option is to accommodate the problem in software.

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  • Learn from your past: Commercial RTOS or roll your own

    Learn from your past: Commercial RTOS or roll your own

    Should you purchase a commercial RTOS or write your own?

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  • Understand why you got (or didn’t get) the RTOS business

    Understand why you got (or didn’t get) the RTOS business

    Anyone working with embedded systems software is likely to be somewhat familiar with RTOSs. I’d like to give you some insight into the business of buying and selling such software products.

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  • Back to the Future with the Millennium Bug

    Everyone over 30 or so can remember the “Y2K problem,” also known as the “Millennium bug.” As the end of the century and millennium loomed, there was widespread concern that chaos would ensue.

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  • A language fit for embedded

    There are a great many programming languages in use today and many more that have fallen into disuse over the years. A challenge has always been standardization. Just about everyone would concur...

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