Texas Instruments is targeting its C2000 DSPs (digital signal processors) to engineers who are 16- and 32-bit microcontroller users looking for lots of functionality. But those users don't really think in terms of DSPs. No problem. TI will call the C2000 a digital signal controller (DSC) instead of a DSP. The nomenclature avoids confusion and has some obvious marketing benefits. Plus, says TI's Stephan Beek, it's a more accurate description of the product. "With its control and communications peripherals and event timers, it looks more like a microcontroller anyway," he says.
A few weeks ago, Ford Motor Co. quietly announced that it was rolling out a new wrinkle to the powerful safety feature called stability control, adding even more lifesaving potential to a technology that has already been very successful.
It won't be too much longer and hardware design, as we used to know it, will be remembered alongside the slide rule and the Karnaugh map. You will need to move beyond those familiar bits and bytes into the new world of software centric design.
People who want to take advantage of solar energy in their homes no longer need to install a bolt-on solar-panel system atop their houses -- they can integrate solar-energy-harvesting shingles directing into an existing or new roof instead.
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