Rethinking the Internet of Things

CATEGORIES : All, System Architecture/AUTHOR : Ron Wilson

As the Internet of Things (IoT) cements itself into place as the mandatory next big thing for 2015, more systems architects are taking a hard look at its underlying concepts. As they look, these experts are asking some hard questions about simplistic views of the IoT structure: the clouds of sensors and actuators attached to […]

OK, 4K Ultra-High Definition TV, Where is My Content?

CATEGORIES : All, Broadcast, System Architecture/AUTHOR : Ron Wilson

You lusted after the early demonstration units. You watched with growing anticipation as more vendors announced products. As prices began to fall, you laid your plans. And then at the perfect moment, you pounced! A 4K ultra-high definition (UHD) TV, with a screen the size of a dining table, a two-page list of features, and […]

In the Beginning

CATEGORIES : All, System Architecture/AUTHOR : Ron Wilson

In 1983, Altera officially came into existence. The year is within the memory of many people today—the first flights of the space shuttles Challenger and Columbia, the assassination of Philippine leader Benigno Aquino Jr., the US invasion of Grenada. In contrast, in the racing time-scale of technology, 30 years can seem imponderably long. TCP/IP became […]

Is the System on Chip Coming Apart?

CATEGORIES : All, Bandwidth, System Architecture/AUTHOR : Ron Wilson

Arguably it is, in some circumstances. This disintegration can take any of several paths—some of which wind deep into the promising yet problematic technology of 2.5D packaging, while others lead back to the seemingly archaic landscape of separate chips on a board, albeit with very unarchaic interconnect technology. The only accurate map for these varied […]

Whither Ethernet

CATEGORIES : All, Design Challenges, System Architecture/AUTHOR : Ron Wilson

Ethernet is spreading—enemies might say metastasizing—into applications far beyond its original use as a local network for workstations. This spread is pushed forward by three primary factors: Ethernet’s culture of standardization and interoperability, reduced price of components because of economy of scale, and the rapid evolution of foundational signaling technology that culture makes possible. At […]