Tools aid Visual Basic and Visual C 1111 developers by znr91839


									                           leading                                                                                      What’s hot
                                                                                                                         in the

                                                                                                                      Edited by
                                                                                                                    Fran Granville

Worming their way in               Tools aid Visual Basic and Visual C                                                developers
“Our present comput-     By Dan Strassberg
ers are less complex
                               lthough they evangelize relentlessly for
                                                                                                             nal-processing, and user-in-
than the brain of an                                                                                         terface-development class li-
earthworm, a species           graphical programming, the folks at Nation-                                   braries; ActiveX controls that
                                                                                                             use standard C       data types;
not known for its intel- al Instruments (NI) know that the company’s flag-                                   and measurement-and-auto-
lectual powers. But                                                                                          mation Component Object
                         ship software product, LabView, and its graphical-                                  Models. For C programmers,
computers’ speed and                                                                                         the package includes develop-
complexity double        language, G, aren’t for every- Studio costs no more than                            ment, debugging, and deploy-
                         one. That’s why NI has long LabWindows/CVI alone used                               ment capabilities for multi-
every 18 months, and     offered tools for programmers to cost.                                              threaded applications; inte-
this will probably con- who use text-based languages mers, Visual C program-
                         to develop applications for
                                                               Measurement Studio
                                                                                                             gration with source-code-con-
                                                                                                             trol packages; Internet data-
tinue until computers    controlling instruments, ac- includes application wizards;                          sharing technology; report-
                         quiring and analyzing data, instrument, data-analysis, sig-                         generation facilities; and user-
have a similar complex- and creating reports and pre-                                                        interface options that include
ity to the human         sentations. LabWindows/CVI                                                          table control and multilingual
                         has been the company’s pack-                                                        support. For Visual Basic pro-
brain.”                  age of choice for C developers;                                                     grammers, Measurement Stu-
        —Stephen Hawking, ComponentWorks played a                                                            dio contains ActiveX controls
    Sydney Morning Herald, similar role for Visual Basic                                                     for data analysis and visuali-
               Jan 7, 2000 programmers. Now, NI is                                                           zation as well as the first col-
                                   bundling tools for developing                                             lection of Interchangeable
                                   C, Visual C      , and Visual                                             Virtual Instrument (IVI,
 SPLITTERLESS                      Basic applications into the       Measurement Studio provides    Ac-
 MULTIMODE ADSL                    Measurement Studio package,       acquisition, analysis, and visualiza-   tiveX controls.
 Globespan now offers a firm-      an enhancement of Micro-          tion tools for developers who             National Instruments, 1-
 ware upgrade to its Titanium      soft’s (        write measurement and automa-           800-258-7022,
 asymmetrical-digital-sub-         Visual Studio. With prices that   tion applications in C, Visual                         Circle No. 437
 scriber-line (ADSL) chip-set      start at $495, Measurement        C     , and Visual Basic.
 family, enabling support of
 splitterless and other ADSL
 versions, including G.dmt (ITU    Jump-start circuit designs
 G.992.1), G.lite (ITU G.992.2),
                                   Agilent Technologies has announced the availability of DesignGuides, a new
 ANSI T1.413 Issue 2, and ANSI
                                   option for the company’s Advanced Design System (ADS) EDA software. The De-
 TR-59. Splitterless support
 eliminates the time and ex-       signGuides provide key specifications and circuit-display-page templates to speed
 pense of a “truck roll,” which    setup of design flows, simulation, and data extraction. Some of the guides also come
 the deployment of ADSL at         with electronic seminars on CD-ROM to provide further insight from the authors of
 customer premises previously      the guides. Currently available are guides for power-amplifier design, linearization
 required.                         techniques for power amplifiers, oscillator design, PLL design, and microwave pas-
           —by Nicholas Cravotta   sive-circuit design. Future guides will cover microwave, RF-board, RF-IC, and com-
   Globespan, 1-732-345-7500,      munication-system designs. Prices for guides ranges from $5000 to $10,000, depend-                ing on complexity.—by Nicholas Cravotta
                  Circle No. 438     Agilent, 1-800-452-4844, Circle No. 439                                                                                                 February 3, 2000 | edn 19
Jack-of-all-trades test set handles                                                                            JPEG CATCHES
                                                                                                               A WAVE(LET)
10-Gbps optical networks                                                                                       The International Standards
                                                                                                               Organization (ISO) has final-
                                                                                                               ized the JPEG2000 specifica-
         ith the advent of the OC-192 and STM-
                                                                           equipment production, test          tion and slates official approv-
                                                                           equipment must do more              al for this year. ISO will allow
         64 standards, dense wavelength-division                           than just work. It needs to         only minor tweaks to the spec
                                                                           make rapid measurements, be         between now and official
multiplexing (DWDM) is about to bring 10-Gbps                              easy to set up, and readily         approval. JPEG2000 will
                                                                           adapt to changes in the tech-       remain backward-compatible
signals to packet-switched fiber-optic networks.                           nology and the measurement          with the previous discrete-
                                                                           task.                               cosine-transform (DCT)-based
However, before operators can deploy such net-                                Enter Tektronix, with its        approach and will employ an
                                                                           OTS9000 optical test set for        industry-standardized variant
works, manufacturers of ultra-high-speed data-                             characterizing and testing          of wavelet-compression algo-
                                                                           transmitters, receivers, trans-     rithms. Such companies as
transmission equipment need             uating such complex, high-         ceivers, optical amplifiers, mul-   Analog Devices, Apple
to test the network compo-              speed products is no small         tiplexers, and demultiplexers.      Computer (with QuickTime),
nents. Designing and manu-              task. To support the rapid         According to Tek, the test set’s    Compression Engines, Infinop,
facturing equipment for eval-           ramp-up in optical-network-        modular design suits it for         Microsoft (with Windows
                                                                           use in both engineering and         Media), PacketVideo, and
                                                                           manufacturing. The 10-Gbps          Summus Ltd already offer pro-
                                                                           plug-ins include cards for          prietary wavelet codecs
                                                                           transceivers, transmitters, and     (, www.
                                                                           receivers. One test set can si-, www.cengines.
                                                                           multaneously test three 10-         com,, www.
                                                                           Gbps transceivers. A variable
                                                                           receiver threshold accelerates      windowsmedia, www.
                                                                           bit-error-rate testing. The sys-, www.
                                                                           tem runs under Windows NT,
                                                                           providing a familiar user in-           Wavelet’s compression arti-
                                                                           terface. For testing 10-Gbps        facts are usually more eye-
                                                                           transceivers, the test set costs    pleasing than the blocky DCT
                                                                           $220,000.—by Dan Strassberg         pixel groupings, leading in
                                                                             Tektronix Inc, 1-800-426-         many cases to a much higher
                                                                           2200,            possible compression ratio
                                                                           measurement.                        than DCT at equivalent per-
                                                                                           Circle No. 440      ceived image quality. For more
The OTS9000 optical test set owes its flexibility to its modular design.                                       information on JPEG2000 and
                                                                                                               wavelet compression, see
                                                                                                               “Compression puts images on
DILBERT By Scott Adams                                                                                         a diet,” EDN, June 18, 1998,
                                                                                                               pg 71; access the JPEG FAQ at
                                                                                                               visit Mark Nelson’s compre-
                                                                                                               hensive online data-compres-
                                                                                                               sion library at www.dogma.
                                                                                                               net/DataCompression, or pore
                                                                                                               over Nelson’s The Data
                                                                                                               Compression Book, ISBN 1-
                                                                                                                               —by Brian Dipert

FACTOID Figures from Jupiter Research indicate that 25 million people spent a total of $7 billion online on holiday shopping in 1999.
                                                                                                                   —NUA Internet Surveys
20 edn | February 3, 2000                                                                                           
DACs ask for little power,
yield many bits                                                                                                    BENCHMARKS COME
                                                                                                                   TO THE FOREFRONT
    here’s no end to the outpouring of D/A
                                                                             tichannel, 8-bit DACs in 16-
                                                                                                                   The EDN Embedded Micro-
                                                                             and 20-pin TSSOPs. You can
    converters from IC vendors in a variety of                               get dual, triple, and quad ver-       processor Benchmark
                                                                             sions, consuming 360 to 520           Consortium (EEMBC) contin-
configurations. If you need 16-bit resolution via                              A, depending on version,            ues to progress toward wrap-
                                                                             and operating from a 2.7 to
                                                                                                                   ping up the Version 1.0 bench-
a fully buffered, parallel interface, the monoto-                            5.5V supply. These rail-to-
                                                                             rail-voltage output DACs have         marks. Now that the code is
nic LTC1657 from Linear Technology may meet                                  independent, double-buffered          complete, the next step is to
                                                                             input latches, so you can up-         get all the members’ scores
the requirements. The 28-pin IC provides rail-                               date all channels simultane-
                                                                             ously with no effect on DAC           certified so they can be made
to-rail voltage output and operates from a sin-                              output during the new-data-           public for an announcement
                                                                             write operation. When the de-         on April 11. Stay tuned to see
gle 5V supply; typical current consumption is                                vices are not in use, you can
                                                                                                                   which processor vendors step
                                                                             assert a shutdown mode and
650 A. Maximum differen-              with an internal 2.048V refer-         drop current consumption to           up to the plate and reveal the
tial nonlinearity is less than        ence, you can substitute your          less than 1 A. The dual-              performance capabilities of
   1 LSB; this guaranteed             own external reference. You            channel MAX5102 in a 16-pin           their processors. Be sure to
monotonicity relieves you of          set the gain at 1 or 2 us-             package costs $2.09 (1000).
                                                                                                                   register on the Web site, so
potential problems in closed-         ing a pin on the package, thus                     —by Bill Schweber
loop control applications, as         selecting the internal gain-set-         Linear Technology Corp,             you can get notified when
does the low glitch of 8 nV-sec       ting resistors. The LTC1657                    EEMBC releases those scores.
on output transitions.                costs $8.60 (1000).                                    Circle No. 441           EEMBC’s membership hit
   In addition to the full-par-          If a lower resolution DAC             Maxim Integrated Prod-
allel interface, you can use this     can meet your needs, the               ucts,               34 last month when Improv
DAC in a 2-byte input mode.           Maxim MAX5100 series of-                              Circle No. 442         Systems (www.improvsys.
Although the DAC comes                fers you a choice among mul-                                                 com) joined. Improv’s initial
                                                                                                                   product is the Jazz PSA Plat-
                                                                                                                   form, a configurable process-
                                                                                                                   ing platform for embedded
                                                                                                                   systems. The company is tar-
                                                                                                                   geting multichannel communi-
                                                                                                                   cations, media processing,
                                                                                                                   protocol handling, and DSP.
                                                                                                                   The architecture combines
                                                                                                                   multiprocessing techniques
                                                                                                                   and very-long-instruction-word
                                                                                                                                    —by Markus Levy
                                                                                                                    EEMBC, 1-530-672-9113,
Vendors’ outpouring of DACs knows little limit, as these devices demonstrate. The parallel-input, 16-bit LTC1657
from Linear Technology (left) consumes 650 A, and the single/dual/quad-channel MAX5100 family from Maxim                              Circle No. 443
Integrated Products consumes 360 to 520 A.

FACTOID With the recent merger of Time Warner and America Online, the two companies will together own 142 million clients world-
wide. AOL has 22 million Internet subscribers; Time Warner has 120 million cable and magazine subscribers.—NUA Internet Surveys
22 edn | February 3, 2000                                                                                                  
Cell-phone chip set puts pressure
on existing architectures                                                                                          MOBILE PENTIUM III
                                                                                                                   STEPS UP SPEED
     ou can see the fast-moving metamorpho-
                                                                             tween recharging and that
                                                                             even primary-AA-battery op-           Imagine that your notebook
     sis of cell-phone chip sets in the AD20msp430                           eration is practical.                 computer could automatically
                                                                                The processor’s speed and          change performance levels
from Analog Devices. For Global System for Mo-                               headroom allow you to use a           when you connect or remove it
                                                                             design incorporating this chip        from ac power. That image is
bile communications (GSM) systems, the chip set                              set with high-bandwidth cel-          becoming a reality with Intel’s
                                                                             lular applications, such as Web       SpeedStep microprocessor
has three primary signal-processing blocks. The                              browsing, video, and data             technology. It allows the sys-
                                                                             transfers, using the 56-kbps          tem BIOS and chip set to
AD6522 digital baseband processor includes a                                 high-speed-circuit-switched-          change the processor’s operat-
                                                                             data and 115-kbps general-            ing frequency and voltage. Intel
DSP, a cache, an SRAM, a              EDN, Sept 30, 1999, pg 32).            packet-radio service proto-           implemented SpeedStep on
DMA engine, an ARM micro-                Chip-scale packaging in             cols, for example. Because            two new mobile Pentium III
controller, and other inter-          mini-BGA and TSSOP form                your implementation proba-            devices that run at 600 or 650
faces, and the AD6521 analog          accelerates shrinking your fi-         bly won’t work perfectly the          MHz and 1.6V or 500 MHz and
baseband processor embodies           nal design. Using this quartet         first time you run your code,         1.35V. The technology allows
an I/Q interface, codecs, and         of ICs, you can build a single-        the chip set supports embed-          these Pentium IIIs to take
voiceband processing. The             band 900-, 1800-, or 1900-             ded debugging tools, includ-          advantage of the square rela-
AD-6523 plus AD6524 zero-IF           MHz, GSM cell-phone core               ing an ARM JTAG emulator, a           tionship of voltage and power
radio uses an innovative ar-          that occupies less than 10 cm2         high-speed logger and address         and provides a power differ-
chitecture to provide a zero-IF       residing on a single-sided pc          tracer in a DSP, and ARM sin-         ence of 14.4W (650 MHz) and
receiving channel; a transmit-        board and a complete handset           gle-wire tracing/debugging.           7.9W (500 MHz). The 600- and
ting path; a low-noise amplifi-       with less than 50-cm3 volume.          The chip set costs $15                650-MHz devices cost $423
er; and a fast-locking, frac-         (Dual-band designs take                (100,000).                            and $637 (1000), respectively.
tional-N synthesizer (see             about 20 cm2.) Power con-                          —by Bill Schweber             Intel programmed these
“Direct-conversion GSM chip           sumption is 1 mA in standby,             Analog Devices, www.                processors with two bus ratios;
set gives superhet designs            which means that the device                             the chip set controls which one
something to worry about,”            can operate for long times be-                        Circle No. 444         the processor uses. After a sys-
                                                                                               900/1800/           tem reset, the processor starts
                                                                                             1900-MHz GSM
                                                                                                                   in the lower of its two core fre-
      DIGITAL BASEBAND              ANALOG BASEBAND                 ZERO-IF RADIO
           AD6522                       AD6521                        AD6523/24                                    quencies. The system makes
                                                                                                                   an operating-mode transition
                 218x                   BASEBAND
                                                                                                                   to the high core frequency by
     CACHE       DSP                  I/Q INTERFACE                                                                putting the processor into
                                                                                                                   deep-sleep state, raising the
      DMA         I/O
                                        AUXILIARY                                                                  core voltage, setting the bus
                                                                                                                   ratio, and returning to the nor-
                                                                     FAST-LOCKING,                                 mal operating state. It reverses
     1-MBIT      ARM7                                                FRACTIONAL-N
      SRAM       TDMI                   SECTION
                                                                                                                   these steps to change back to
                                                                                                                   the low-core frequency. Intel
                                                                                                                   also implemented a special
           FAST DATA                     VOICE                                                                     manufacturing test process to
      115-kBPS GENERAL-
                                                                                                                   allow the processor to operate
     56-kBPS HIGH-SPEED                                                                                            at multiple frequencies and
                                                                                                                   voltages.—by Markus Levy
Driving toward that ultimate goal of a single-chip cell phone with flexibility and extensibility, the AD20msp430     Intel Corp,
chip set incorporates a digital baseband processor and microcontroller IC, an analog baseband IC, and a zero-IF                      Circle No. 445
receiver and transmitter IC plus a synthesizer IC.

FACTOID In a survey of more than 4000 US households, only 3% said they will not use the Internet to purchase products again, according
to the results of a new survey from PC Data Online and Goldman Sachs.—NUA Internet Surveys
24 edn | February 3, 2000                                                                                                
Cost-compressed codec targets VCRs
      -Cube has done some price-cutting surgery
                                                                          controller to 8 Mbytes of ex-
                                                                          ternal memory.                   BULK-ENCRYPTION
      on its DVexplore codec and come up with                                DVexplore and DVxcel also     PROCESSOR TARGETS
                                                                          differ in their host-CPU in-     NETWORKING
DVxcel for use in hard-disk-drive, optical, and                           terfaces, using PCI on DVex-     The VMS747 security proces-
                                                                          plore and a generic address      sor from Philips Semicon-
tape digital-video recorders. With the DVxcel, C-                         and control bus on DVxcel.       ductors targets networking
                                                                          Unlike some other single-chip    applications, such as virtual-
Cube cut the codec size by using a 0.22- m                                codecs, which can encode and     private networks (VPNs) at
                                                                          decode but not at once, DV-      OC-3 or greater speeds, and
process. It also eliminated digital-video-25 sup-                         xcel simultaneously juggles      cryptographic-security applica-
                                                                          the two tasks, enabling time-    tions, such as financial servers
port and dual-stream, frame-         capture-and-display configu-         shifting capabilities, such as   and point-of-sale terminals.
accurate access capability—          rations. Although you need to        pause, fast-forward, rewind,     Philips based the device on
features that video-editing ap-      externally decode audio in           and instant replay. DVxcel can   the ARM7 32-bit RISC micro-
plications might value but           hardware or software, DVxcel         also capture data transmitted    processor, enabling it to ex-
that are overkill for simpler        supports four audio-input            during the video-blanking        ceed 256-Mbps throughput
                                          and four audio-output           interval, such as enhanced       for Internet Protocol-security
                                          ports, audiovisual syn-         program-guide information.       (IPSec) processing (Triple Data
                                          chronization, and 1.8- to       With less-than-$300 systems      Encryption Standard, or 3DES,
                                          10-Mbps constant- and           in mind, C-Cube prices DV-       message digest, or MD5, and
                                          variable-bit-rate video         xcel at $29 (250,000 per year)   Secure Hash Algorithm, or
                                          streams. The 308-bump           compared with approximate-       SHA-1, hashing).
                                          BGA packaging also              ly $50 for DV-explore. DVxcel       Security features include a
                                          leaves room for BT.656-         uses a 2V core and supports      dual-state processor architec-
                                          format video inputs and         3.3V I/O levels.                 ture, encrypted program-code
                                          outputs; three 8-bit digi-                  —by Brian Dipert     execution, battery-backed
                                          tal-bit-stream- transfer          C-Cube Microsystems, 1-        memory, an integrated IPSec
                                          ports; and a 64-bit, 110-       408-944-6300, www.c-cube.        processor, and Federal
                                          MHz synchronous DRAM            com. Circle No. 446              Information Processing
                                                                                                           Standard (FIPS) 140-1 Level 3
                                                                                                           embedded physical security.
                                    MICROSPARC RISC
                                                                                                           The processor is self-contained
                                                                                                           and performs bulk data
                                                                                                           encryption, hashing, public-
                                                                                                           key acceleration, and random-
                             VIDEO DSP
                                                                                   SERIAL                  number generation. The
                                                                                                           VMS747 software-develop-
                                                                                               1           ment kit will be available in
                 VIDEO                                                             AUDIO       3           the second quarter. Samples
        8                                                                        INTERFACE
               INTERFACE                                                                                   of the VSM747 will be avail-
                                                                                                           able in February with volume
                                                                                          64               production in the second
                       HOST INTERFACE/       SECONDARY               SYNCHRONOUS-DRAM
                        PRIMARY BSIO            BSIO                    CONTROLLER                         quarter. The processor costs
             8                                                                                             $42.79 (10,000).
       (SHARED WITH                                                                                                  —by Nicholas Cravotta
          UPPER                                 8
         16 BITS OF
                                                          TERTIARY                                           Philips Semiconductors, 1-
         HOST DATA)                                                                                        800-447-1500, ext 2070, www.
                                                                                                                            Circle No. 447
DVxcel hopes to hasten the obsolescence of analog VCRs.

FACTOID The value of the global Internet-travel market will increase sixfold by the end of 2001, according to the Gartner Group.

26 edn | February 3, 2000                                                                                       
           edge                                                                                           BRIDGE CHIP
                                                                                                          SPAWNS UNIVERSAL
                                                                                                          COMPACTPCI SINGLE-
                                                                                                          BOARD COMPUTER

Music to your eyes(?)                                                                                     With the Sentinel custom PCI-
                                                                                                          to-PCI-bridge ASIC, the Power-
                                                                                                          Core CPCI-680 CompactPCI
    ast month’s trip to the 2000 Consumer Elec-
                                                                     Processing Primer, (Addison-         single-board computer from
                                                                     Wesley, ISBN 0-8053-1684-1)          Force Computers can function
    tronics Show in Las Vegas drove home the                         as its title implies, is a general   in a system slot or any periph-
                                                                     DSP introduction, albeit with        eral slot. The bridge ASIC
point, not that I needed any convincing, that an                     a slant toward audio.                allows the board to automati-
                                                                        All three books come high-        cally switch between functions
increasing diversity of devices can transmit, re-                    ly recommended by partici-           without software or hardware
                                                                     pants in the comp.arch.              changes, thereby reducing
ceive, capture, and transform rich multimedia                        embedded, comp.compres-              board inventory to a single
                                                                     sion and comp.dsp news-              part for some applications.
data. In many cases, this ex-     ples of Digital Audio (Mc-         groups. Once you have mas-               Sentinel includes message-
pansion of functions begins       Graw-Hill, ISBN 0-07-              tered the fundamentals of            signaled interrupt (MSI) to
with audio, requiring less        050468-7) is less academic         audio, you can then delve into       eliminate polling and hardware
memory, processing power,         than John Watkinson’s The          the specifics of audio codecs        support for intelligent I/O (I2O)
and broadcast bandwidth           Art of Digital Audio (Focal        with some of the other com-          communications. The chip also
than do still and video images.   Press, ISBN 0-240-51320-3).        pression literature my article       supports the PCI Industrial
   If you want to add audio       Pohlmann’s book is, therefore,     references. And if you find          Computer Manufacturers
capabilities to your next de-     a bit easier to digest, but Wat-   other good sources of infor-         Group 2.1 R1.0 hot-swap speci-
sign and aren’t an expert on      kinson’s is the more thorough      mation, please drop me an e-         fication for peripheral slots.
the topic, take a look at three   of the two, even explaining in     mail and let me know what                Force based the PowerCore
books that I reference in my      depth various audio-record-        they are, and where to find          CPCI-680, a 6U CompactPCI
article “Now hear this” (pg       ing and -playback systems.         them. I’m all ears—or is that        card, on a 400-MHz MPC7400
50). Ken Pohlmann’s Princi-       Ken Steiglitz’s A Digital Signal   eyes?—by Brian Dipert                PowerPC processor with as
                                                                                                          much as 1 Gbyte of high-
                                                                                                          speed memory within one slot.
 PC/104 computer survives harsh environments                                                              The MPC7400 is Motorola’s
                                                                                                          ( fourth-
  The Elan104-NC single-board computer from Arcom Control Systems aims for the harsh                      generation PowerPC and con-
  environments in transportation, automation, and communications applications. Arcom                      tains an on-chip 128-bit AltiVec
  based the PC-compatible processor board on the 100-MHz AMD Élan SC400 486SX mi-                         vector-processing unit that has
  crocontroller. The module includes three serial ports; onboard SVGA video; 10BaseT                      a sustained 1-Gflops perform-
  Ethernet; 16 Mbytes of extended-data-out DRAM; 8 Mbytes of local flash; a battery-                      ance. The board has two PMC
  backed, 128-kbyte SRAM disk; parallel I/O; and PC/104 expansion. The video interface                    slots, two independent Fast
  can simultaneously drive high-resolution CRT and flat-panel displays.                                   Ethernet interfaces, and two
    The PC/104 module measures 4 6 in. and includes power-management utility soft-                        serial interfaces.
                                                 ware for use in tight spaces with restricted                 Applications for the CPCI-
                                                 airflow. The board comes preinstalled with               680 include Internet protocol
                                                 Datalight’s ( ROM-                     telephony gateways, Internet
                                                 DOS. Arcom also offers complete software-                routers, speech- and image-
                                                 development tools, including drivers for                 processing systems, and base-
                                                 Windows CE, QNX, and FlashFX.                            station infrastructure systems.
                                                    The Elan104-NC uses a 5V supply. Oper-                    Prices for the PowerCore
                                                 ating temperature is 20 to 70 C with a                   CPCI-680 start at $3995 for a
                                                 66-MHz clock or S20 to R50(C with a full-                400-MHz processor with 2
                                                 speed, 100-MHz processor. With 4 Mbytes                  Mbytes of L2 cache; a product
                                                 of DRAM and 4 Mbytes of flash, the                       with128 Mbytes of SDRAM
                                                 Elan104-NC costs $409 (100).                             and 16 Mbytes of flash and will
                                                                         —by Warren Webb                  be available in this quarter.
  Arcom’s $409 PC/104 single-board computer tar-  Arcom Control Systems, 1-888-941-2224,                                 —by Warren Webb
  gets industrial-environment applications. Circle No. 448                       Force Computers, 1-408-369-
                                                                                                          6000, www.forcecomputers.
                                                                                                          com.              Circle No. 449

FACTOID E-mail is the most popular online application, with some 326 million e-mailboxes worldwide, according to Forrester Research.

28 edn | February 3, 2000                                                                                       
                                                                                                             POWER AND DATA
                                                                                                             SHARE LAN LINES
Logic family targets                                                                                         The Power-Over-LAN system
telecomm, datacomm backplanes                                                                                from PowerDsine is an unin-
                                                                                                             (UPS) based power hub con-
       he new SN74GTLPx family of Gunning-

                                                                   logic signal levels. The family           nected to a LAN switch; it
                                                                   supports live insertion and               sends electrical power over
       transceiver-logic-plus (GTLP) devices from                  features an output swing of               the LAN’s data line. The sys-
                                                                   less than 1V, tight tolerance-            tem allows sufficient power to
       Texas Instruments enables increased back-                   receiver-threshold levels, dif-           flow over the data lines to
                                                                   ferential input, and output               operate Internet Protocol (IP)
plane-data throughput for multislot, medium-                       edges-control circuitry on the            telephony products. In addi-
                                                                   rising and falling edges of the           tion, Power-Over-LAN enables
and heavily loaded back-         lowing them to act as transla-    GTLP outputs, thus reducing               IP-based products to attain the
planes. Operating at 100         tors between TTL or low-volt-     line reflections and EMI. Ap-             same uninterrupted-service
MHz, a 32-bit parallel back-     age TTL and GTLP environ-         plication notes, application              performance as traditional
plane can transfer 3.2 Gbps.     ments. Additionally, although     support, demonstration back-              telephony products by allow-
The devices are backward-        targeting operation at the        planes, and I/O Buffer In-                ing the system to operate con-
compatible with the logic that   higher threshold-voltage/low-     formation Specification- and              tinuously during power inter-
parallel backplanes currently    er-noise margin of GTLP sig-      HSpice-simulation models                  ruptions. Power-Over-LAN
use. The devices operate at      nal levels, they can also oper-   are also available. Devices are           also provides a software-man-
3.3V and are 5V-tolerant, al-    ate at Gunning-transceiver-       available for sampling, and               agement tool that controls dis-
                                                                   prices range from $4.70                   tributed backup power to
 Keep nasty people out of your PC                                  (1000) for the 8-bit transceiv-
                                                                   er to $17.50 for the 36-bit uni-
                                                                                                             Ethernet terminals. The system
                                                                                                             thus eliminates the need for a
  DO YOU ACCESS the Internet? Well, beware: Nasty hackers          versal-bus transceiver.                   dedicated UPS for each data
  may try to probe your computer while you are online. A                  —by Nicholas Cravotta              terminal.—by Bill Travis
  firewall protects you from these hackers but limits your           Texas Instruments, 1-800-                 PowerDsine Ltd, 1-516-756-
  freedom on the Internet. The BlackIce product from Net-          477-8924, ext 4500, www.ti.               4680,
  work Ice runs with all Windows operating systems and             com/sc/logic.                                               Circle No. 451
  provides a compromise between open and easy access to                           Circle No. 450
  the Internet and the closed-down secure access of a fire-
     The product monitors intrusions by scanning network
  traffic for hacker signatures in much the same way that             EDA EXPERT WANTED
  antivirus software scans the hard disk looking for virus             f
                                                                      I you're an accomplished engineer who knows electronic-design-
                                                                      automation (EDA) tools and likes to write, EDN wants you. We're
  signatures. BlackIce reconstructs a model of both the
                                                                      looking for a technical editor with the background to interpret
  client and the server and detects invasions by determin-            technical trends in EDA tools for our 160,000 readers in print and
  ing what network traffic is normal. When BlackIce detects           100,000 visitors online.
  a hacker, it sends a scan to gather information, including            As an editor, your primary responsibility will be to research,
  the hacker’s computer name, Internet Protocol address,              write, and edit articles. You'll also attend trade shows and meet
  and Internet-service provider. Recently, a BlackIce user            with industry leaders. We need someone who likes people, com-
  caught a hacker who was stupid enough to name his                   municates well, and can balance several projects with fixed dead-
  computer by his exact name. The user took this “reverse-            lines. Ideally, you'll have a degree in electrical engineering or com-
  domain-name-system look-up,” found the phone number                 puter science, plus at least two years experience in electronic
  of the hacker, and called him. Busted! And if you alert a           design.
                                                                        We're looking for someone in California, but we will consider
  service provider of a hacker on its system, the company
                                                                      other locations with significant electronics activity. Our salaries are
  terminates that hacker. Using the product, I’ve caught              competitive with engineering positions. Please mail, fax, or e-mail
  several hackers, so it’s a good investment for $39.95.              your résumé, salary requirements, and writing samples (if any) to
  However, I also discovered that this product interfered             Michael C Markowitz, EDN Magazine, 275 Washington St, Newton,
  with my intranet access, and at press time, I still hadn’t          MA 02458; fax 1-617-558-4470;
  found a work-around.—by Markus Levy                                 EDN is an equal opportunity employer, M/F/D/V. Cahners
    Network Ice Corp, Circle No. 452                 Business Information, Newton, MA.

30 edn | February 3, 2000                                                                                           

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