Electronic Design

Electronic Design UPDATE: May 21, 2003


Electronic Design UPDATE e-Newsletter Electronic Design Magazine - http://www.planetee.com May 21, 2003


*************************ADVERTISEMENT************************** Free Seminars from Microchip Get Energized at Microchip's Free half-day seminar coming to a city near you. See hands-on demos and get real solutions from Microchip, the leading provider of microcontroller and analog products. You will never look at embedded solutions the same way ever again. We promise. Refresh at http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ08g80Aj **************************************************************** NEWS FLASH: At our newly redesigned Web site, http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ05Am0Av , the power of Electronic Design is a mouse click away! Read our Web exclusives, discover Featured Vendors, access our archives, share viewpoints in our Forums, explore our e-newsletters, and more. Be sure to participate in our current QuickPoll: Rate the Redesign! Today's Table of Contents: 1. Editor's View A Call To ARMs 2. News From The Editors * More Processors Take Up ARMs * Low-Power PC/104 SBC Runs At 128 MHz * Small-Footprint Database Targets High-Availability Systems * Controller Sweetens Video And Graphics In Handhelds * Chip Set Lowers Cost Of VoIP-Based Telephones 3. Upcoming Industry Events in June * Supercomm * Sensors Expo & Conference * Design Automation Conference * Transducers '03 * JavaOne * Embedded Processor Forum 2003 * Third Conference on Microelectronics and Packaging 4. Magazine Highlights * Cover Story: Engineering Feature -- Time Management: EEs Challenged By Layoffs And Hiring Freezes * Technology Report: Programmable Media Processors Deliver Flexible Solutions * Leapfrog: Industry First -- Tools Tighten Timing In ASICs Critical Paths * Embedded in Electronic Design: The Need For Speed * Design View -- Silicon-On-Insulator Technology Bumps Up SoC Performance Edited by John Novellino ********************** 1. Editor's View -- Exclusive to Electronic Design UPDATE ********************** A Call To ARMs By William Wong, Embedded /Software /Systems Technology Editor Looking for a microcontroller? If ARM's partners have their way, it will probably have an ARM processor at the core. Once the darling of low-power, custom controllers, the ARM architecture is quickly moving into standard product lines. Standard ARM-based parts are available from a large number of vendors, including Atmel, Oki Semiconductor, Philips, Sanyo, and Sharp. This trend is due to a number of factors. First, hardware costs continue to fall and transistor counts continue to rise, making it practical to include a 32-bit processor core. Second, ARM cores have achieved a level of popularity among developers and designers. This has created a supply of experienced ARM programmers. Finally, the ARM core is being combined with peripherals common to 8- and 16-bit microcontrollers that developers are already familiar with. The ARM microcontrollers are targeting all segments of the spectrum, from small, low-power devices to high-performance designs. At the low end, the target is the venerable 8051. It has an architecture that is efficient in small applications but cumbersome for larger applications that the 32-bit ARM excels in. This wide range of solutions means that upward growth is possible with minimal rework. Software, the other part of the puzzle, is coming together as well. ARM's own software tools are rather expensive. This is not a problem when spending lots of money to license an ARM core but a major impediment when purchasing a few thousand standard chips. Luckily, alternatives to ARM's extensive tool suite are showing up. Software tool vendors like Keil are supplying low-cost tools comparable to 8051 tools. Microcontroller vendors are also bundling low-cost toolkits and demo boards. Most tools are specific to a vendor's product line, but core code is easily transferable. The language of choice is C/C++, of course. There is more to come. Hardware-based Java acceleration will be showing up in more standard parts this year. Either way, ARM parts may be in your future. Contact William Wong at: mailto:[email protected] To discuss this article, go to http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ08hP0AA *************************ADVERTISEMENT************************** The Industry's Easiest-to-Use Software - Xilinx ISE 5.2i Design Tools Xilinx ISE grants the most productivity available for your logic performance on the new Spartan-3 FPGAs. The optimized suite of design tools will help you finish faster and get your product to market ahead of your competitors. Experience this speed with the FREE Eval CD, visit: http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BAMZ0A7 **************************************************************** ********************** 2. News -- From The Editors ********************** ***More Processors Take Up ARMs The ML675K series and the ML675200 Digital Media Controller are the latest ARM-based standard products designed to hit 16-bit pricing with 32-bit ARM7 power. The ML675K series is pin- and peripheral-compatible with the ML674K line, which includes a DMA and four analog-to-digital converters. The ML675K operates at 60 MHz with an 8-Mbyte, four-way associative unified cache. Peripherals can operate at a different frequency than the processor. The device supports the 32-bit and the more compact 16-bit Thumb instruction set. The ML675K accommodates up to 32 kbytes of internal SRAM. A glueless interface handles external flash, SRAM, and DRAM up to 80 Mbytes. The ML675200 runs at 30 MHz and adds a 60-MHz Teak DSP and a 4-bit ADPCM2 voice codec. MP3 and WMA software support is available. These processors are backed by three 32-kbyte blocks of SRAM. An additional 64 kbytes are available for the main processor. Peripherals include a USB 2.0-compliant interface, I2C, UART, audio serial interface, and two serial I/O ports. The ML675K series starts at under $6 and is available in 144-pin LQFP and LFGBA packages. The ML675200, in flash and ROM-less versions, starts at under $8. For more information, go to http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BAOs0AZ ***Low-Power PC/104 SBC Runs At 128 MHz The 5070 single-board computer from Octagon Systems uses a low-power, 128-MHz 586 processor. It includes a 10/100BaseT Ethernet interface, PC peripherals, and an Asiliant 69000 video interface that supports resolutions to 1280 by 1024 pixels. The board accommodates up to 2 Gbytes of compact flash memory. The 5070 with 32 Mbytes of SDRAM costs $625 and comes with embedded DOS 7.2. It’s compatible with Linux, Windows CE, and QNX. For more information, go to http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BAOt0Aa ***Small-Footprint Database Targets High-Availability Systems The eXtremeDB compact implementation from McObject starts at only 130 kbytes of RAM. Its time-cognizant, two-phase commit protocol ensures changes to the main instance database and identical standby. The eXtremeDB XML interface adds SOAP-enabled (simple object access protocol) browser support. Pricing for the eXtremeDB and High Availability version starts at $995 for object code and $7500 for source code. XML support starts at $3000. For further information, go to http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BAOu0Ab ***Controller Sweetens Video And Graphics In Handhelds To simplify the integration of better color screens in handheld devices, MediaQ Inc. developed a video and graphics engine that meets the needs of next-generation cell phones, PDAs, and other pocket-size electronics. The MQ2100's hardware accelerator for 2D graphics accommodates LCD screens with resolutions to 320 by 240 pixels with no performance penalty. Increased embedded graphics memory allows more colors to be displayed, and together with an internal JPEG engine, it permits functions such as JPEG compression to be done without external memory. The JPEG engine and on-chip video processor encode still images at resolutions up to VGA. An internal 64-bit graphics engine with double-buffering for 176- by 220-pixel resolution produces top-notch graphics. A low-leakage CMOS process incorporates many power-saving features. The result is less than 5-mW power consumption during normal operation. For more, go to http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BAOv0Ac ***Chip Set Lowers Cost Of VoIP-Based Telephones A system-on-a-chip solution considerably reduces the component count and power consumption of telephones in voice-over-IP applications. Developed by Texas Instruments, the TNETV1050 IP phone processor is based on the TMS320C55x digital signal processor, but it also incorporates a MIPS32 RISC processor for the high speed required to support current and evolving IP telephone standards. The chip's specialized dual-channel 16-bit audio codec handles handset, headset, and speaker drivers. An Ethernet subsystem includes two Ethernet media access controllers and physical-layer interfaces, as well as a three-port line-rate switch. That combination slashes the number of external components needed and considerably reduces power consumption and system cost. The chip also integrates the company's field-proven Telogy software, which includes a real-time operating system and protocol stacks for H.323 and the session initiation protocol. In lots of 100,000 units, the chip will sell for less than $15. For more information, go to http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BAOw0Ad ********************** 3. Upcoming Industry Events ********************** June 1-5, Supercomm, Atlanta, Ga. (800) 873-7277 or http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BACJ0Ag June 2-5, Sensors Expo & Conference, Chicago, Ill. Contact [email protected] for registration and [email protected] (Eastern U.S. and Canada) or [email protected] (Western U.S. and international) for exhibits. June 2-6, Design Automation Conference, Anaheim, Calif. http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0paP0Ax June 8-12, Transducers '03, Boston, Mass. http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BAOx0Ae or contact Katharine Cline at (619) 232-9499. June 10-13, JavaOne, San Francisco, Calif. http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ07YT0Aw June 16-19, Embedded Processor Forum 2003, Fairmont Hotel, San Jose, Calif. http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ0BAOz0Ag June 18, Third Conference on Microelectronics and Packaging, Herzelia on the Sea, Israel. http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ08CE0AM or contact conference office at [email protected] ********************** 4. Magazine Highlights ********************** In case you missed them, here are some of the high points of our most recent issue, May 12, 2003. * Cover Story: Engineering Feature -- Time Management: EEs Challenged By Layoffs And Hiring Freezes Smaller technical staffs have led to longer work weeks (often much longer), changes in work schedules, and more stress. * Technology Report: Programmable Media Processors Deliver Flexible Solutions Resource-rich multimedia engines handle MPEG-2, MPEG-4, and other video-processing tasks for entertainment and handheld systems. * Leapfrog: Industry First -- Tools Tighten Timing In ASICs Critical Paths Deftly optimizing ASIC critical paths, this tool rides atop existing cell-based flows to improve timing while leaving physical design largely undisturbed. * Embedded in Electronic Design: The Need For Speed * Design View -- Silicon-On-Insulator Technology Bumps Up SoC Performance Data-refresh and cell-layout issues must be addressed to optimally implement this space-saving alternative to SRAM technology. For the complete Table of Contents, go to http://lists.planetee.com/cgi-bin3/DM/y/eQ1y0DJhUf0EmQ05Am0Av




Editorial: Lucinda Mattera, Associate Chief Editor: mailto:[email protected] Advertising/Sponsorship Opportunities: Bill Baumann, Associate Publisher: mailto:[email protected]


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