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Flexis AC Demonstration Video

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My name is Scott Pape and I’m here with Scott Brown, both of us are system and application engineers at Freescale Semiconductor. Thanks for joining us for a short demonstration of the demo AC kit, the development platform for the Flexis AC product line. As with other Flexis products within Freescale’s controller continuum, the Flexis AC bridges the gap between 8 and 32 bit development by offering products that are pin, peripheral, and tool compatible. The 8 bit and 32 bit Flexis AC devices benefit from 2 popular Freescale CPU architectures. The 8 bit AC devices are built using the code efficient SO8 card while the 32 bit devices utilize the high performance energy efficient V1 ColdFire card. The enhancements in hardware and software enable design engineers like yourselves to transition between devices quickly and easily making these precuts perfect for designing both high end and low end products all while using the same product platform. For example, let’s take a look at washing machines. Washing machines range from very basic mechanical interfaces to elaborate touch screen interfaces. In addition the higher end models might have automatic water level sensing or automatic dirt sensing. The Flexis concept allows easy migration from low cost to feature rich applications.

We have claimed that the Flexis AC devices are truly compatible. You may be asking us is it really possible. We’re going to demonstrate how easy it is to migrate within the Flexis AC family that will save you time in your next design.

We’re going to run through a demo showing the ease of migration from the SO8 AC to the ColdFire V1 AC family members. For this demonstration we will use the demo AC kit. This kit includes a board that has a 3 axis accelerometer on it. The software for this demonstration will read the X, Y and Z values of the accelerometer and then send the data to a graphing utility on a PC.

We will start with the SO8 version first. The tool we will use for compiling the software is CodeWarrior from microcontrollers. This is one software tool that can be used on both, the 8 bit SO8 and the 32 bit ColdFire. We start by compiling and programming the SO8 code first. After the device has done programming, the debugger window is launched and we can start execution of the code simply by pressing the go button within the debugger window. Switching to the graphing utility, we can see the X, Y and Z coordinates being displayed in the red, green and blue graphs. In addition there’s an orange graph that shows the CPU cycles that the MCU is using to read and do any calculations on the data and then sending to the host PC. Then we can switch to the averaging. You can see in the averaging that the CPU cycles required increases considerably over the raw data. This is due to 16 and 32 bit math being performed to average the data. Now switching to the filtering mode, this does a little bit more math and as you can see the CPU requirements increase again versus the data averaging. Now we will demonstrate the switch to the Cold Fire V1. We power down and close all the debugger windows. We remove the SO8 data card from the demo AC kit board. Replace it with the ColdFire V1 data card. Turn power back on and we go to the CodeWarrior interface. Using the MCU change wizard within CodeWarrior, we can easily switch to the ColdFire AC 256 MCU. When we are selecting this CodeWarrior behind the scenes is changing the compiler, changing the header files, changing libraries and changing the debugger that will be called when the program is launched. All this is done automatically by CodeWarrior and requires no user input.

Now that we have programmed the 32 bit ColdFire, we switch over to the data graphing window. And again you can see the X, Y and Z coordinated being displayed in the red, green and blue graphs and the CPU values being shown in orange. When we switch to the data averaging mode, we can see that with ColdFire there’s only a modest increase in CPU cycles required. Again when we switch to the filtering mode, you can see it’s just a very small increase in CPU. Since this is a 32 bit MCU, requires fewer cycles to do the same calculations that the 8 bit has already done.

Thanks for joining Scott and myself for this demonstration of the Flexis AC development kit, the demo AC kit.

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Read the Italian version: Flexis AC - Video Dimostrativo

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