Loose Ends Introduction Requirements and specifications are very important components in the development of any embedded system. While it is a common tendency for designers to be anxious about starting the design and implementation, discussing requirements with the customer is vital in the construction of safety-critical systems.
Supercomputer Scientific computing is a much smaller niche market in revenue and units shipped. It is used in government research labs and universities.
BeforeCPU design was often done for this market, but mass market CPUs organized into large clusters have proven to be more affordable.
The main remaining area of active hardware design and research for scientific computing is for high-speed data transmission systems to connect mass market CPUs. Embedded system As measured by units shipped, most CPUs are embedded in other machinery, such as telephones, clocks, appliances, vehicles, and infrastructure.
Embedded processors sell in the volume of many billions of units per year, however, mostly at much lower price points than that of the general purpose processors.
These single-function devices differ from the more familiar general-purpose CPUs in several ways: Low cost is of high importance. It is important to maintain a low power dissipation as embedded devices often have a limited battery life and it is often impractical to include cooling fans.
Keeping peripherals on-chip also reduces power consumption as external GPIO ports typically require buffering so that they can source or sink the relatively high current loads that are required to maintain a strong signal outside of the chip.
Many embedded applications have a limited amount of physical space for circuitry; keeping peripherals on-chip will reduce the space required for the circuit board.
The program and data memories are often integrated on the same chip. When the only allowed program memory is ROMthe device is known as a microcontroller.
For many embedded applications, interrupt latency will be more critical than in some general-purpose processors. Embedded processor economics[ edit ] The embedded CPU family with the largest number of total units shipped is theaveraging nearly a billion units per year. The design time is now roughly zero, because it is widely available as commercial intellectual property.
It is now often embedded as a small part of a larger system on a chip. The 8-bit architecture and the first MOS Technology chip were designed in 13 months by a group of about 9 people. For about a decade, every student taking the 6. One team of 4 students designed and built a simple 32 bit CPU during that semester.
Soft microprocessor For embedded systems, the highest performance levels are often not needed or desired due to the power consumption requirements. This allows for the use of processors which can be totally implemented by logic synthesis techniques.
These synthesized processors can be implemented in a much shorter amount of time, giving quicker time-to-market.[Blanchard90] Blanchard, Benjamin S.
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