Go here to sign up for The Embedded Muse.

The Embedded Muse 197 Copyright 2010 TGG Aug. 16, 2010

You may redistribute this newsletter for noncommercial purposes. For commercial use contact jack@ganssle.com. To subscribe or unsubscribe go to https://www.ganssle.com/tem-subunsub.html or drop Jack an email at jack@ganssle.com.

EDITOR: Jack Ganssle, jack@ganssle.com


- Editor's Notes
- Quotes and Thoughts
- Tools and Tips
- Jobs!
- Joke for the Week
- About The Embedded Muse

Editor's Notes

Are you happy with your bug rates? If not, what are you doing about it? Are you asked to do more with less? Deliver faster, with more features? What action are you taking to achieve those goals?

In fact it IS possible to accurately schedule a project, meet the deadline, and drastically reduce bugs. Learn how at my Better Firmware Faster class, presented at your facility. See https://www.ganssle.com/onsite.htm .

The Embedded Muse is back from its summer hiatus. I wanted to get this issue out particularly as there are a number of jobs listed. Does this signal a glimmer of hope for engineering?

The Embedded Processing Directory is an on-line database of CPUs used in this industry with selection criteria. Check it out at http://www.embeddedinsights.com/directory?src=j1g .

Quotes and Thoughts

Your problem is another's solution;
Your solution will be his problem.
- unknown

Tools and Tips

Kalpak wrote: "To make the code portable, we use uint8_t instead of unsigned char. Now with most IDEs, we lose out on syntax highlighting and unfortunately, uint8_t looks like conventional text: uint8_t.But with UltraStudio, you can put uint8_t etc in the "syntax highlighting" file and make it look just like unsigned char. That is one of the reasons I swtiched over to UltraStudio."

Rod Bartlett sent this: "Having once again been frustrated by how slow the Windows search utility is, I finally found a better file search tool for Windows. Its an open source project called AstroGrep. This one lets you search recursively for multiple file extensions and either display just the filenames which contain the specified text or the filenames and the lines within each which match. If you choose to display matching lines, the matching text is highlighted. You can use regular expressions and limit matching files based on timestamps or sizes. The best part is its very fast. See http://sourceforge.net/projects/astrogrep/

From Jason Hsu: "Your latest newsletter mentioned Scilab as an open source alternative to MATLAB.

"Another open source alternative to MATLAB is Octave, which has greater MATLAB compatibility. I recently used it for analyzing data for Project Phoenix (IEEE study group working on an open source blood pressure monitor). Since I live over 60 miles from the lab where we meet, using Octave has allowed me to work on the project from home. Although the group has a MATLAB license, I'd only be able to use it at our lab, as it would be prohibitively expensive to give everyone in the group a MATLAB license. Since Octave is open source, anyone can use it on any computer at any location."

Bruce Wedding commented: "I saw someone recommended Snag-It by Techsmith. To really take training and instruction to another level, look at Camtasia Studio by the same company. This is screen recording software which allows you to specify an area of the desktop and make a video of your actions. It also records your voice. This is great for training on processes. It is also excellent documentation on how to perform builds, debugging etc. The uses are unlimited."

RPN sure is popular in the engineering community! Luca Matteini is a fan: "I read on EM196 an advice for an RPN calculator, and well, I'm RPN-addicted too. I "discovered" RPN, quite late, or I better have to admit I underestimated it for years, until I bought an HP-42S in the early 90s. That calculator stayed by my side all the time, but I always wanted to find something similar to pop on my virtual desk too, instead of the ugly/clumsy applications dubbed on any OS as "calculator". I found the answer in the gorgeous clone of my fav calc: Free42, http://thomasokken.com/free42/ . Put on it one of the smart skins (I use the "Michaels HP" one, compact and close to the real one) and you're done, with a real, full featured, RPN calculator: assign the application launch to some shortcut key, and you can run it in a snap. Now the HP-42S (the original one) sits resting most of the time, to be used only when the PC is off, saving batteries as well."


Let me know if you're hiring firmware or embedded designers. No recruiters please, and I reserve the right to edit ads to fit the format and intents of this newsletter. Please keep it to 100 words.

Young Chang R&D Institute in Waltham Massachusetts seeks a DSP Software Engineer to develop algorithms, microcode, and real-time interactive control models for musical sound generation within Kurzweil products. This position requires working closely with the Soundware Department perfecting said algorithms, and with the Hardware Department designing new processor architectures.

Requirements are a Master's (or exceptional Bachelor's) Degree in Computer Science, Engineering, Physics, Acoustics, Communication, Mathematics, or similar physical or applied science discipline.

Electronic music enthusiast preferred. Music-related skills, a good ear, and lots of imagination would be an asset.

Email resume and salary requirements to edspeng@ycrdi.com.

Crestron Electronics, the world's leading manufacturer of advanced control and automation systems, is looking for talented embedded developers. We have been hiring Engineers steadily through the recent economic downturn and have in excess of 200 Engineers located in our brand new Research and Development Center in Rockleigh, NJ.

Are you a motivated embedded developer? Do you understand and work with Real Time OS's on a regular basis? Do you have experience with Nucleus, or Windows CE? Do you understand Ethernet network stacks? Zigbee networking? I2C, SPI and other hardware bus protocols?

We are hiring and all levels of experience! If you want a great career in a thriving company developing leading edge products please visit our website www.crestron.com/careers

At DRS Tactical Systems we are developing state of the art computers for use in rugged commercial and military environments. We currently have a need for a senior digital design engineer to facilitate the development of our next generation of hardened computer and display products. Job Location Melbourne, FL

The ideal candidate will participate in digital board system design from concept, through hardware development, integration and testing. This position requires the ability to understand system performance issues and architect Intel processor based systems to meet customer requirement by investigating and trading off various architectures and technologies. The successful candidate will handle all aspects of main board design, integration and test, with the ability to oversee and provide technical direction across multiple projects.

Duties and Responsibilities
- Design and development of rugged computers, display and peripherals
- Integrate new microprocessor and bus technologies into existing and future products
- Conduct architecture, technology and implementation trade-offs
- Develop technology roadmaps
- Analyze existing products and recommend product improvements
- Select and specify state-of-the-art integrated technologies components for new designs

Basic Qualifications
- Bachelors or Masters Degree in Electrical or Computer Engineering;
- Ten or more years experience in Digital and microprocessor design.
- Extensive working experience with microprocessor and digital architectures
- Excellent interpersonal, leadership and communication skills
- Hold or qualify for a US DOD Security Clearance

Email resumes to: Rob Wehrli, rwehrli@drs-ts.com

DRS is also looking for a Lead Software Engineer to develop application-level and embedded software for new product development as well as supporting upgrades/enhancements to existing products. This position will provide software technical leadership, mentoring support, and ensure application of best practices. Identify areas for enhanced processes, methods, and tools.

- Experience in developing Linux device drivers.
- Experience with Linux Kernel programming.
- Familiar with the Linux kernel and networking developer community.
- Programming proficiency in C/C++ is required
- Experience with Qt preferred.
- Experience in trouble-shooting HW device level problems is required.
- B. S. in Computer Science or Computer Engineering plus 10-12 years of related experience

Email resumes to: Rob Wehrli, rwehrli@drs-ts.com

Tracerco is a world leading industrial technology company providing unique and specialised detection, diagnostic and measurement solutions. Headquartered in Billingham, North East England.

We are looking for an Electronics Engineer with a passion for delighting customers with innovative solutions due to growth of the Tracerco business. The role will require the individual to project manage and design cutting edge electronics and instrumentation for use within the global oil and gas industry.

Essential Responsibilities
- Develop and engineer solutions to complex electronic design problems.
- Design state-of-the-art instrumentation for measurement problems.
- Ensure the design and development of products that satisfy customers' technical requirements and meet both time-scale and budgetary constraints.
- Accountability for quality, safety and fitness for purpose.
- Produce high quality product documentation according to ISO 9000 and ATEX.
- Liaise with approval bodies to gain certification for products.

- Degree or equivalent Electronics Engineering.
- Experience in electronics design and analysis of high performance analogue and digital electronics.
- Knowledge of serial interfaces and protocols (e.g. RS485, Modbus, Fieldbus).
- Knowledge of designing for low power consumption and for small space-volumes.
- Ability to work in a global, fast moving team.
- Enthusiasm for leading-edge technology.
- Mechanical knowledge and design principles advantageous
- Hazardous area design experience and certification advantageous
- Knowledge of embedded software advantageous

To apply please send your CV and covering letter via www.johnsonmatthey.jobs. Informal enquiries can be made to paul.featonby@tracerco.com

Joke for the Week

Here's a fun site that celebrates the engineer - or at least the ingenuity - in all of us:

About The Embedded Muse

The Embedded Muse is a newsletter sent via email by Jack Ganssle. Send complaints, comments, and contributions to me at jack@ganssle.com.

The Embedded Muse is supported by The Ganssle Group, whose mission is to help embedded folks get better products to market faster. can take now to improve firmware quality and decrease development time.