Open Standards

31 articles

Ada & C mixed language development

Last week, I downloaded AdaCore's GNAT Pro 6.2.2 and the latest GNATbench 2.3.1 release (which was announced yesterday), as I wanted to port an Ada & C mixed-language application to VxWorks 6.7. I wanted to do this to show a customer how they can develop new Ada applications (as well as reusing existing intellectual property) and integrate them with network…

nEUROn UCAV programme

In case you missed the news, the article 'COTS for unmanned flights' (Electronic Product Design, 22nd April 2008) describes how the nEUROn UCAV programme (Airforce Technology) has standardized on the VxWorks 653 RTOS. nEUROn is a technology demonstrator programme involving five European companies, which in itself is not unusual, but it does have a significant objective - to demonstrate the…

Managing Software Obsolescence

Yesterday, I attended the Component Obsolescence Group (COG) quarterly meeting, which was held at the Imperial War Museum, Duxford.  I was standing in for my colleague Alex Wilson, who wasn't able to attend, and I gave his presentation 'Managing Software Obsolescence through Standards'. The presentation was about how open standards and software abstraction can provide isolation from underlying hardware architectures,…

Drive by Ethernet?

I read last week that BMW has been researching the use of the Internet Protocol (IP) over standard Ethernet (Cisco) to network automotive controllers ('BMW brings Internet protocol under the hood', EETimes). The motivation for the research is that at present, a number of different networking technologies (including CAN, LIN, MOST and FlexRay) are used in automotive applications, and these…

Military Aerospace & Electronics Show

Yesterday, I attended the UK's Military Aerospace & Electronics technical conference and exhibition, which was held at the Heritage Motor Centre. The technical conference was split into three technical tracks, which were broadly related to avionics, land systems and technologies; and as is sometimes the case at these conferences I found that I wanted to attend some presentations which were…

ARINC 653 partition jitter & scalability

Last week, I was looking at a customer's avionics software architecture to determine whether it might be possible to migrate this to an ARINC 653-based Integrated Modular Avionics (IMA) environment. This raised some interesting questions in terms of performance and scalability. If you consider the implementation of an avionics system using an ARINC 653 software architecture, the RTOS enforces temporal…

Integrated Modular Smartphone?

The title of this blog might suggest that I've got mixed up between Integrated Modular Avionics (IMA) and consumer devices, but if you bear with me, I'll try to explain why I think there are some parallels. I was recently given a shiny new smartphone (wikipedia), which will enable me to keep up to date with important emails when I'm…

Police drone

Just to avoid any confusion, I want to make it clear that this blog ('Police drone') has nothing to do with the forthcoming world tour by the rock band The Police (Wikipedia), but rather the forthcoming trial of an unmanned air vehicle (UAV) by the Merseyside Police force in the UK for "tackling anti-social behaviour and public disorder" ( 'Pilotless…

Military Avionics Technology Exhibition, UK

Last week I had the opportunity to attend the Military Avionics Technology Exhibition arranged by the UK MOD, and held at the Defence Equipment and Support Agency's Abbey Wood headquarters. This  was an impressive venue, although I don't think I quite got used to the 'Bomb Shelter' signs on the deep walls of the lecture theatre and exhibition hall no…

Autonomous military robots

In an earlier blog, 'A robot in every home', I commented on some of the issues related to the development of robotics software, in particular in relation to open standards and safety-criticality. This was in the context of domestic and industrial robots. Now it seems that the issue which is causing debate in the scientific community is prospect of deployment…