NXP Semi has acquired Code Red Technologies, an embedded software development tools provider. The important questions for you are, why did they do that, and what does it mean to you? First, I’ll start with what it means to NXP. In the company’s own words, it helps take them one step closer to becoming an “elite microcontroller supplier.”
My definition of an elite supplier, which differs a little bit from the one I got from NXP, is one that not only offers a one-stop shop of MCUs, tools, drivers, associated software, and tech support, but offers near best-in-class in each of those areas (everybody can’t be best-in-class, right?).
The addition of Code Red Technologies was a good one for NXP for a few reasons, two of which are obvious -- it more closely aligns the Code Red tools with the NXP portfolio, and it stops one of the key tool vendors from supporting the competition. Sounds like a well-thought-out strategy to me.
Code Red Technologies’ tools enable rapid development and debugging of platforms based on ARM microcontrollers. The tools include the LPCXpresso IDE (integrated development environment), which is a low-cost, development platform for NXP LPC MCUs. LPCXpresso is based on Eclipse, with enhancements specific to LPC microcontrollers.
If the goal for NXP was to increase its knowledge in ARM technology, this acquisition is a big leap in that direction. The core technologists at Code Red are all former ARM employees. So if anyone would know the architecture, it’s Code Red -- I mean NXP.
I agree. The acquisition of Code Red Technologies by NXP was a very good business decision. Freescale had a similar acquisition, I believe, with Code Warrior to help support the microcontroller portfolio. Also, Code Red software is quite easy to use with NXP's LPC microcontrollers to the point you don't have to extract the files for the .zip file to compile and down load to the target mcu. The tool provides a "one" click extraction and download process with ease.
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A recent example of a major CAE revamp is MSC Apex, released last month by MSC Software Corp. In a discussion with Design News, MSC executives noted that its next-generation platform is designed to substantially reduce CAE modeling and process time, “in some cases from weeks down to hours.”
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