Embedded Software

  • USB 3.1 – my wishes granted: the Type C connector!

    Nowadays, all computer users just take USB for granted. Plug a device in and it just works. Those of us who remember the Bad Old Days – i.e. before USB – probably appreciate it rather more, as we can remember the challenges involved in adding the simplest of peripherals to a PC. Another angle on […]

  • The Emperor’s new restaurant

    Do you know the story “The Emperor’s New Clothes”? The Emperor is very vain and could not resist when a dishonest salesman offers him some unique clothing. It is unique because it is made from fabric that can only be seen by very wise people; to others, it is invisible. The Emperor cannot see it, […]

  • Real time operating systems: black box or open source?

    Most of the software that most of us use most of the time is obtained as a binary executable. The program may be run and does what it does, but the user has no knowledge of its inner workings and no opportunity to modify its functionality. And all of this is fine. For example, I […]

  • Let me talk for 18 minutes

    I enjoy talking – standing up in front of an audience and making a presentation. I am very lucky in having a job that affords me many opportunities to do just this. I am told that I am good at it. There is often a connection between what people enjoy and what they are good […]

  • The most ubiquitous software on the planet

    Software is an interesting kind of product. The most complex artifacts that humankind has ever made are items of software. Mechanical machines do not even come close. The most complex machine ever made, with about a million moving parts, was the Space Shuttle orbiter. The “moving parts” of software are bits of data; a program […]

  • All aboard! Why is getting on to a plane so difficult?

    If you read this blog with any frequency, you will know that, like many of my colleagues, I travel quite a lot on business. And that travel mostly involves flying, which is a tedious, tiring and stressful activity. We all accept the way that it is mostly because we have no alternative. Some airlines try […]

  • Embedded articles: RTOS performance, dev tools, memory utilization, debugging

    I have finally caught up and this is the last aggregation of recent articles. From now on, all being well, I’ll post to alert readers of new material being available. This time the articles cover measuring RTOS performance, the use of open source tools, memory use optimization and approaches to debugging … Why and how […]

  • Eggheads head to head

    Some time ago, I wrote about my participation in the Eggheads TV quiz show [here and here]. We recorded the program about a year ago and the broadcast was in November. My team was very successful. We did not win the money. There was £6000 on the table and it was still there when we […]

  • At ECS Syd – talking about memory fragmentation, power management and self-test

    Each Fall, just before the weather becomes too horrible, I get to attend ECS [Embedded Conference Scandinavia] in Stockholm, Sweden. It has become a good event for embedded developers in that area and I am pleased that my paper submissions seem to result in a couple of acceptances each year. This year, I assume ECS […]

  • What is the first day of the week?

    On a previous occasion, I suggested that it was time for change. I feel strongly that our calendar – 7 day weeks, which do not fit properly into months of apparently random length or into the 365/366 day year – does not really work well in the 21st century and we could do better. This […]


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