Infocus LP540 (http://rbi.ims.ca/3860-546). Even the best PowerPoint presentation can suffer if the projector is mounted at a sharp angle producing a distorted image called the keystone effect. Besides having several features including front, rear, and ceiling projection methods, InFocus LP540 projector uses an Analog Devices iMEMS accelerometer to accurately measure the projection angle in any given setting. The accelerometer provides the tilt angle data to the Digital Keystone Correction software in the controller, which automatically determines the level of correction necessary (up to ±25 degrees) to digitally resize the image and provide a square and undistorted image. For more info on Analog Devices' iMEMS accelerometers, go to http://rbi.ims.ca/3860-547.
Notepad Computer Knows Which Way is Up
Toshiba Portégé M200 (http://rbi.ims.ca/3860-550). The graphics capability of the M200 Tablet PC allows a speaker to add hand-written notes or diagrams to a document during a presentation or meeting—so long as the computer knows which side is up. By integrating a low-cost, compact, dual-axis accelerometer into the design, engineers made it possible to determine the orientation. The tilt input from Analog Devices'±2g, accelerometer also allows users to view the top and bottom of a web page by simply tilting the computer up and down. Tilting the notebook from left to right while viewing an eBook or digital magazine automatically turns the page, thanks to the signal from the accelerometer. For more info on Analog Devices' ADXL311 accelerometer, go to http://rbi.ims.ca/3860-551.
Self-Orienting Camera Phone
The V401D by Mitsubishi Electric (http://rbi.ims.ca/3860-548). Engineers at Mitsubishi realized it would be great to know which side of a cell phone is up when taking photos with it. To distinguish the portrait from the landscape mode in their 2G cell phone handset with integrated camera, they selected a low-g CMOS-based MEMS accelerometer to sense tilt. In addition to sensing the phone's position, the accelerometer made possible a pedometer feature to count the steps and measure the distance traveled. In the future, engineers plan to use it as an input for games. Unfortunately, the V401D is currently available only in Japan. For more info on the MEMSIC CMOS Thermal Accelerometer, go to http://rbi.ims.ca/3860-549.
Wal-Mart will hold its second Made in the USA Open Call July 7-8, at its headquarters in Bentonville, Ark. The event will be a repeat effort by the world’s biggest seller of consumer goods to increase the amount of US-made products it sells in Wal-Mart stores, in Sam’s Club members-only wholesale outlets, and on walmart.com.
From design feasibility, to development, to production, having the right information to make good decisions can ultimately keep a product from failing validation. The key is highly focused information that doesn’t come from conventional, statistics-based tests but from accelerated stress testing.
There’s a good chance that a few of the things mentioned here won't fully come to fruition in 2015 but rather much later down the line. However, as Malcolm X once said, "The future belongs to those who prepare for it today."
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.