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The future, according to Michio Kaku

August 11, 2010 7:01 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

When Michio Kaku speaks, people listen. The theoretical physicist boasts an impressive resume: B.S. from Harvard, Ph.D. from Berkeley, co-creator of string field theory, best-selling author, and radio host. And so it came to pass that on the third day of NI Week, Dr. Kaku regaled the masses with his earthly wisdom.

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Creating the “Smart” Consumer

August 9, 2010 7:23 am | by Lauren DeStefano, Assistant Editor | Comments

Indesit’s Smart Washer uses Freescale’s ZigBee node to reduce energy by considering green power availability and energy cost in its operation.

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Common ground

August 9, 2010 5:31 am | by Alix Paultre, Editorial Director | Comments

I recently came across an interesting news item in Wired  about how the EU was adopting the Universal Charging Solution (UCS) cell-phone power interface. USB has been a kind of power lingua franca for smart phones, but that ubiquitous interface is burdened by a plethora of connector styles.

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The Ubiquity of Displays on Household Appliances

August 9, 2010 5:14 am | by Simon Wyre, Lascar Electronics | Comments

For several years now, many of the gadgets we use around the house, on the move and in the workplace have contained some form of visual display to impart status information to the user and even allow the user to interact with them via a touch screen.

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The DIY RTOS Meets Its Match

August 7, 2010 6:32 am | by John Carbone, Express Logic | Comments

The do-it-yourself approach to a real-time operating system appeals to many an engineer’s desire to control, schedule, and manage application interrupts. So ten years ago, the number of in-house RTOS applications outstripped all commercial RTOS implementations. Although the do-it-yourself (DIY) RTOS remains the number-one competitor to commercial RTOSs, industry analyst Embedded Market Forecasters has found

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10 Things to Consider When Securing an Embedded 802.11 Wi-Fi Wireless Device

August 7, 2010 5:52 am | by Timothy Stapko, Lead Software Engineer and Project Manager, Digi International | Comments

The risks to users of wireless technology have increased as the popularity of wireless grows. Hackers are becoming more sophisticated so it's very important that wireless device manufacturers secure their devices properly.

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Software-Development Planning is Critical to Product Success

August 6, 2010 5:57 am | by Keith Curtis, Technical Staff Engineer, Microchip Technology, keith.curtis@microchip.com | Comments

Let’s face it, all of our product design cycles are accelerating. To stay competitive, your company needs the next big thing, they need it yesterday, and it can’t cost any more than it has to if you are going to compete.

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Optimizing Low-Current Measurements and Instruments

August 4, 2010 2:18 pm | by Jonathan L. Tucker, Keithley Instruments, Inc. | Comments

Characterizing devices at low current levels requires knowledge, skill, and the right test equipment. Even with all three, achieving accuracy at low current levels can be a challenge because the level of the current is often at or below the noise level of the test setup. To ensure success in low-level current measurements, it is important to know the type of test equipment to use, the different sources of measurement error, and the appropriate techniques to minimize these errors.

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OpenVPX Resource Page

July 30, 2010 11:13 am | Comments

VPX is a broadly defined technology utilizing the latest in a variety of switch fabric technologies in 3U and 6U format blades.

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Motivation for graphical development on DSPs

July 28, 2010 11:44 am | by Joe Coombs, Applications Engineer, Texas Instruments | Comments

Digital signal processors (DSPs) have become ever-present in today’s world, populating everything from stereo systems and cell phones to automobiles and industrial equipment. Despite this proliferation, relatively few embedded developers are DSP-focused.

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iPhone “jailbreaking” exempt from DMCA

July 28, 2010 6:26 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

The feds have just dropped a bomb: The Library of Congress has added exemptions to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) that make “jailbreaking” legal. Apart from fundamentally altering Apple’s business model, the ruling has re-opened the schism between supporters and opponents of digital rights management.

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Powering Backlit Displays in Severe Environments

July 26, 2010 5:48 am | by Bill Abbott, Endicott Research Group, www.ergpower.com | Comments

When removed from the comfort of a controlled indoor environment, LCDs can be subjected to a variety of stressful conditions. Extreme temperatures, shock, vibration and variances in ambient light can impact backlight performance and lifetime.

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An Overview of Micro Thermoelectric Technology

July 22, 2010 11:52 am | by Burkhard Habbe, Micropelt | Comments

Thermoelectricity has been known since the 1830s. Two functional principles are included under this term: The popular Peltier-Effect describes how electric current flowing through thermoelectric material transports heat, creating a cooling effect.

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The Advantages of Hydrogen Fuel Cell Technology

July 22, 2010 9:40 am | by Joshua Nelke, Siemens Industry, Inc. | Comments

Hydrogen fuel cells can be used in a wide range of environments such as use in homes, ships, cranes and vehicles. Still, current funding is directed mostly to the transportation sector to be reduce pollution. In this article, we will focus on one of the most exciting uses for fuel cells: a Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV).

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Are Your Transformers Ready for the Smart Grid?

July 22, 2010 6:44 am | by Mike Dickinson, Director, New Business Development, Pacific Crest Transformers | Comments

National challenges like the aging power grid, increasing energy demands, spiraling cost of generating electricity and its cost on the environment are all pointing towards the need for a grid that can produce and distribute energy more efficiently and reliably.

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