issue 7 - Embedded systems newsletter

Embedded systems #7

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Datasheets was in paper long time ago and then PDF for many years. aims to revolutionize our PDF datasheet world with their online service. Beyond viewing, they give tools to snip and annotate datasheets. Once you saved the essential information with it’s also possible to share it with your colleagues. Great additions to improve overall productivity of electronics engineers.

Another online tool. CircuitLab provides in-browser tools for schematic design and circuit simulation. With these tools it’s possible to design and analyze analog and digital systems before the prototype creation. Probably the easiest way to create your schematics and test them.

BeagleBone Black GPIO through /dev/mem
An interesting article that recalls that hardware access through sysfs filesystem is very slow. After this quick recall it gives us a solution that is 1000 times faster: goes through /dev/mem


uC Command Line Interface, Part 1 (Updated)
As a member of a team that have to debug the first prototype of a microcontroller card I developed with an hardware team mate a serial interface that permits to test it. It’s very handy for hardware engineers to have command line interface to test quickly their changes without depending of software team. In this article the author shares how he does his own uC Command Line Interface and he publishes sources.

Tiny Shell
It’s a generic attempt to provide faster shell facilities to your embedded device. As soon as you can read/write bytes from the UART you can have a shell. If you do not already have a such system in you company Tiny Shell could not be ignore.

A glimpse of undefined behavior in C
This article starts with 6 lines of C code that are rather simple and that seem also rather safe. But there is nothing easy in C code and I’m sure you will also be doomed by this example. The author goes through the details and he explains why those 6 simple lines are not so safe at all.

A Malloc Tutorial
Even if the paper is a bit old (2009), this is an informative tutorial on how malloc function is built. The tutorial deals with all the common functions of memory management: malloc, calloc, free and realloc. If you have to code yourself a memory management system or if you are only curious, you should read it.


Behind this strange name there is an electronics game. The complete name is “KOHCTPYKTOP: Engineer of the People” and in the game you are an engineer who designs integrated circuits based on specifications provided to you. I’m feeling well when I discover that it’s possible to create a game on electronics and get people learn the concepts of circuits.

The Development of the C Language
Written by Dennis M. Ritchie in 1993. The paper gives many informations on the first years of the C language. The historic context, the state of art and the problems C language aims to solve when it was created. If you have ever written one line of C you must read it

An inspirational history of a dad that do everything he can do for his disabled son. “I’m your daddy and as I know electronics I will do your Powerchair myself.” ~ the amazing dad