Here at Electronic Design, we try to bring you insights into the latest technology and trends. We take advantage of many sources, from our own embedded surveys to input from analyst and market firms like VDC Research and Objective Analysis. They sometimes provide us with contributed articles that highlight details they have uncovered. More often, they provide us with access to their reports and insights so we can include this information in articles that we write.
We have recently partnered with VDC Research and will be incorporating the results of some of their latest surveys and research papers in articles from Electronic Design editors. You can get access to this information by subscribing to VDC’s latest research, or even take advantage of its Custom Research and Consulting services.
Of course, these services can cost a pretty penny, but the in-depth material tends to be a bargain compared with trying to acquire the information and analysis not to mention incorporating the expertise of VDC Research’s analysts. Anything you find here on Electronic Design will just be the tip of the iceberg.
A new alternative available from VDC Research is its free Technology Influencer and Buyer Portal. This is “a content delivery service with on-demand access to some of our research offerings.” You can sign up for free access to select “thought-provoking content that addresses various user-oriented issues.” These are essentially the same reports that you can buy from VDC, although the portal list is not exhaustive; the firm has an extensive library of research available outside of the portal. Still, the portal has a large number of reports that most will find useful, intriguing, and insightful. It also gives you a taste of the quality and quantity of reports that VDC generates, so you will have a better idea of what you will get if your company subscribes to VDC’s other services and reports.
VDC will periodically ask portal users to participate in panels. This provides them with market trend information that will help direct future research and reports that may show up in the portal as well. This will be combined with information from surveys like VDC’s Embedded Engineering Survey. The results of the 2017 survey are now available through the portal. That alone is a good reason to sign up.
So what types of reports are available in the portal? They range from whitepapers on "IoT & Embedded Technology” to “Enterprise Mobility.” The VDC Views on Key Insights & Trends address some very useful topics like “Blockchain & IoT” and “IoT Forcing Architectural Change.”
VDC Research’s “Software Quality and Security Challenges Growing from Rapid Rise of Third-Party Code” is one that stood out for me. It highlights trends in embedded tools (Fig. 1). It was targeted at third-party code so issues such as programming language choices such as Ada or Rust were not in the mix. The report did address tools that use static analysis, and even binary analysis that can be used on third-party code.
The breadth of what VDC covers is significant. Even with the selections in the portal, one can get an idea of this by the topics addressed in one of its reports, “How to Unlock Hidden Value from Your Warehouse Operations Through Voice” (Fig. 2). What is interesting is how this information meshes with the latest trends in consumer voice control technology using smart speakers from companies like Amazon and Google. Even noisy industrial environments can employ voice control when blended with improved sound capture and noise cancellation processing support.
Here is just a short text capture I did from the list of reports available on the portal:
- “Connected Car Driving Change in Defect Detection”
- “KIOSK Information Systems Integrates Intel Security”
- “Software and System Modeling Tools Infographic”
- “Securing IoT Systems With Secure Devices”
- “Build Versus Buy: Reevaluating the Biggest Threat to Commercial Software Vendors”
As I start my work on the 2018 trends articles for the January print issue of Electronic Design, which will be online before then, I will be taking a look at VDC Research’s “2017 IoT & Embedded Technology Predictions” to see how they compare with what happened this year and what I have seen and heard along the way. That is how those crystal balls work. Now you can get some of those insights from VDC Research as well.