naperlou, I agree. The ability to package a complete system on a chip (SoC) is very impressive. With consumer electronic devices being small in size, microcontroller manufacturers are designing and packaging complete product designs on a piece of silicon. The Silicon Lab's Precision32 MCU is quite impressive because a complete barcode scanner is placed into a small iC package. This article is definitely worth sharing with my ITT Tech Students. Great article Parker!
I am impressed too - especially by the thorough but easy to understand technical explanations provided to explain barcode scanner technology. Thanks for a very interesting article that just added to my understanding of this extremely utilized technology that is often taken for granted as well as the possibilities, something that I had not given much thought to before your very well-written article.
Parker, I am very impressed by your ability to implement this unit with a single MCU. This is becoming the trend. MCUs with 32-bit processors and lots of supporting functionality (e.g., ADCs) on chip are making it much easier to implement designs quickly and more reliably. I wonder how much of this implementation is in the software as oppossed to discrete logic as in the past.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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