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Solutions for Industrial Computing

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Digital Video Drives the Design of Next-Generation Personal Computing Devices

Posted August 18, 2011 8:00 AM by embeddedreporter

One of the innumerable jokes floating around the Internet is a timeline of the evolution of the computer (see sidebar.) Aside from the humor, this visual highlights the unrelenting drive toward miniaturization that has characterized the computer from its inception.
What is a Computer? In recent years, the line between computers and other electronic devices has been blurring. Take a typical modern "smart" cell phone. It features a high-resolution display; runs an operating system, features a Web browser and scores of other applications (a.k.a. apps); and incorporates a state-of-the-art microprocessor, wireless connectivity, and gigabytes of storage. You may not think of it as a computer, but in fact this device offers far more raw computing power and capability than a top-of-the-line laptop or desktop PC from just a decade ago.
Neither of these technology shifts shows any sign of lessening; in fact, they are accelerating. Throw in a wildly competitive marketplace and ever-shorter life cycles, and the net result is a pressure-packed environment for anyone involved in the design and manufacturing of computers and other electronic devices. Semiconductor manufacturers, original design manufacturers (ODMs), and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are scrambling to keep up with the marketplace - and each other.

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