Chuck, Excellent article. There's no question but that industrial HMIs will be providing all types of additional computing options from animations and video-based instruction manuals and other applications. As PCs in particular continue to provide additional processing power, and operating systems go to the next level, the Industrial HMI becomes the portal to the machine more and more. Thanks.
Oh that's classic Ann!! "...with no talking back." I don't want my 'hardware' to talk to me either! We each want a different UI according to what we like. And I like all my (non-audio) hardware silent and obedient! "STOP that BEEPing!!" I find a train of thought to be very fragile and noise is distracting.
This sounds like a much better approach than conventional methods where HMI's either use one mutitasking processor for communication, screen updates and background processing or two seporate processors, one being used for communications alone. This all in one approach is bound to be much more effiecent.
Charles, it seems that integration of two tasks in a chip, where real-time applications and domain specific applications. I think such hybrid model chips have to develop further, so that they are more compactable to the board and efforts can be minimize.
I agree, Beth. Freescale, as well as other chip makers moving in the same direction, are on to something important. When you see a company like Cadillac use iPhone capabilities in their touch screens, then you know it must be solidly in the mainstream.
Interesting partitioning of tasks between the two processors, and one that makes a lot of sense. The HMI/GUI continues to get more complicated as a greater proportion of electronics users are consumers, and a smaller proportion are engineers, as the iPhonization of industrial applications continues. In the ancient old days of much lousier, less intuitive UIs we had to put up with quite a lot of confusing interactions. OTOH, some people (my husband included) find the command line interface a much more powerful way to interact with the machine. Well, yes, if you actually need to program the thing. Personally, I'd prefer a one-way non-vocal Siri: I talk, it listens, figures out what I want, and does it, with no talking back. Meanwhile I'm on to the next thought and task.
Very cool development and one that puts Freescale squarely ahead of a trend that I don't see any signs of stopping. With more and more people (overly) dependent on smart phones and tablets for everything related to both work and play, there's no doubt that people are expecting the same ease of use and intuitive user interface in every kind of electronics/appliance/piece of gear they touch. Why settle for less when the touch and gesture interface popularized by Apple is so pervasive. If I can intuitively use my smart phone to access my home security system, why shouldn't I be able to employ the same interface to control industrial automation system or my fridge. I think this trend will go gangbusters over the next year and Freescale's new multicore processor is only going to help.
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For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.