Computer hardware is the collection of physical elements that comprise a computer system.

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Hardware programming for kids. What is the good way to start?

I am thinking about introducing my 12 year old son to hardware programming. I built a robot with the .NET Micro Framework and while he was fascinated with controlling the robot, his eyes glazed over ...
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2answers
204 views

Constructs for wrapping a hardware state machine

I am using a piece of hardware with a well defined C API. The hardware is stateful, with the relevant API calls needing to be in the correct order for the hardware to work properly. The API calls ...
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1answer
301 views

Generate analog signal from Windows 7 [closed]

I want to output an analog signal from my Windows 7 computer. The wave will be a combination of about 5 frequencies, with a maximum of 28 MHz. It won't be a problem to generate the wave data with C++, ...
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456 views

Building software frontend for hardware that does not yet exist

Our task is to build a software frontend to control a hardware device that does not yet exist. We should start development about half a year before the first prototype is available, the project is ...
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3answers
468 views

Diving into microcontroller programming

I just got a batch of LED matrix modules from Sure Electronics (http://www.sureelectronics.net/goods.php?id=1120) and a driver board (http://www.sureelectronics.net/goods.php?id=972). I've got it ...
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1answer
484 views

When does it become mandatory to sign up with the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG)?

My company is looking to add Bluetooth functionality to our hardware, so that we can integrate connectivity to our products with various tablet devices. To do this, we are looking to purchase an ...
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6answers
2k views

USB software protection dongle for Java with an SDK which is cross-platform “for real”. Does it exist? [closed]

What I'd like to ask is if anybody knows about an hardware USB-dongle for software protection which offers a very complete out-of-the-box API support for cross-platform Java deployments. Its SDK ...
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4answers
641 views

How can a programmer keep up with the hardware world?

I think that it's safe for me to assume that many, if not most, programmers are quite enthusiastic about computers, and even electronics in general. Now, I realize that a programmer should first and ...
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4answers
4k views

Increase Performance of VS 2010 by using a SSD [closed]

After searching on the internet for performance improvements when using Visual Studio 2010 with a solid state hard drive, I heard a lot of different opinions. A lot of people said that there isn't ...
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1answer
289 views

Getting in to smart card programming

I have a Compaq nw8440 with a smart card reader that is: Compatible with ISO 7816 compliant Smart Cards. PC/SC interface support I have been interested in smart cards and wanted to start playing ...
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1answer
2k views

booth multiplication algorithm

Is booth algorithm for multiplication only for multiplying 2 negative numbers (-3 * -4) or one positive and one negative number (-3 * 4) ? Whenever i multiply 2 positive numbers using booth algorithm ...
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6answers
11k views

What is the history of why bytes are eight bits?

What where the historical forces at work, the tradeoffs to make, in deciding to use groups of eight bits as the fundamental unit ? There were machines, once upon a time, using other word sizes, ...
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5answers
908 views

How to test software that burns CDs without wasting CDs?

I want to write an application that can be used to burn CDs (music). I know I should test it with real CDs anyway, but I don't want to do this every time I make a small change. But I do want to know ...
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8answers
1k views

Is it necessary to understand what's happening at the hardware level to be a good programmer?

I'm a self-taught programmer, just in case this question is answered in CS 101. I've learned and used lots of languages, mostly for my own personal use, but occasionally for professional stuff. It ...
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1answer
163 views

Why there is no ISO hardware query interface?

I'm currently reading a book, chapter about I/O, and one question came to my mind. Basically, when you program in C/C++, you have an amazing opportunity to optimize for hardware behavior. Using ...
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5answers
1k views

Development platform for .NET development?

I'm currently in discussions with my boss about getting a new pc since my old one is getting ... old... I am the only "real" developer in the company (it's not a software company) and as such they ...
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17answers
13k views

Thoughts on Development using Virtual Machines [closed]

I'll be working as a development lead for a startup and I've suggested that we use VMs for development. I'm not talking about each developer having a desktop with VMs for testing/development, I mean ...
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3answers
846 views

Do you need Hardware skills to be a Robotic Programmer?

I want to know: Do you need hardware skills to be a robotic programmer?
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19answers
3k views

Would you purchase hardware with your own money to use at work to do your job better?

At work, I was given a reasonably-spec'ed machine (dual quad 2GHz, 4GB RAM, 160GB 7200RPM drive, Win7), but it was lacking in a few places (HDD / RAM). The IT staff was OK with me replacing hardware ...
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1answer
183 views

What are the absolute, minimum requirement for containing SE Asian charsets for an embedded system project?

I work for a company that has begun integrating embedded computer systems into our products that we manufacture. We have a pretty wide range of products and they are distributed across the globe. ...
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4answers
453 views

Isn't functional paradigm too divergent with underlying hardware to be generally efficient?

Inspired by a question from SO: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/6623391/how-to-gain-control-of-a-5gb-heap-in-haskell It can be a long debate about FP's numerous advantages and disadvantages, but ...
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8answers
721 views

Slow developer machines - approach with vmware good?

we are using slow developer notebooks. They come equipped with vista and 2 gb rams, which slows down everything. Someone decided a good resolution would be to use vmware clients instead of faster pc ...
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1answer
230 views

How do libraries such as DirectX relate to drivers?

I've always been curious, how libraries such as DirectX, OpenGL and OpenAL are implemented. Do they use some sort of unified API provided by OS? Talk directly to kernel? Maybe hardware drivers provide ...
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6answers
351 views

Are computers just means to an end, or can they contribute to the productivity and creativity of programmers? [closed]

This is not a question with a single answer, but I am fascinated by the diversity of computer set-ups in the office. Some people work on ancient machines that are absolute donkeys with CRT monitor, ...
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1answer
136 views

Webserver / DB / Application - Best way to setup the system for performance

I have a turbogears app that I am bringing live that uses a postgresql DB on the back end. From a performance issue am I better off having the DB and app on separate server or on the same server? If ...
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6answers
546 views

Large Multi-Touch Display Monitor? [closed]

I'm sure that most shops use a standard whiteboard or a more fancier "glass-board" to discuss ideas during a meeting. After the meeting, people will usually take photos of the artifacts using a ...
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4answers
5k views

Recommendations on running Visual Studio inside a VMWare VDI environment?

Does anyone have experience running Visual Studio inside a VDI environment? Would you recommend it? Would you advise against it? Our Background Our department is one of the few in the ...
3
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1answer
640 views

Android development & hardware testing - Which handsets & tests? What are the best options/deals? [closed]

I'm quite new to Android development. I spent a few weeks, doing tutorials and developping simple apps. Now, I'm focusing on all the test aspects. I have done Junit tests before so I thought it would ...
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7answers
2k views

What reasons might a programmer have for wanting hyperthreading turned off?

My company just bought new computers to replace old 2GB Windows XP machines. Someone on my team noticed that they came with hyperthreading disabled, and told everyone to reboot and turn it on. Is ...
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3answers
227 views

Smartphones and tablets for testing

In my work I have started development of a website/webapp that will be viewed primarily on smartphones and tablet. I have now been given the task of buying the necessary hardware for testing the ...
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11answers
2k views

How much storage space do developers really need on work systems?

Not Counting the OS And the requirements to run the Development software. The storage space required. Strictly speaking from work perspective(company setup and not freelancers).A individual ...
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13answers
1k views

What hardware do newly hired programmers get at various companies? [closed]

Looking at various pictures/office tours of software companies (Facebook for instance), I see a lot of the same hardware in terms of monitors (Dell monitors). I was wondering when companies hire new ...
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3answers
169 views

When should I decline to make a requested change?

I work on the software side of a company that provides custom hardware with software running on top of it. Often times the hardware is not engineered well. In those cases, I am often asked first to ...
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5answers
2k views

Mobile Development- Obtaining development hardware - best practices?

I'm looking to get into smartphone development, but there a quite a few options out there for platforms right now. (iOS/Android/WebOS/Bada/Symbian/MeeGo/WindowsMobile/JavaME) I'd like to have ...
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2answers
7k views

Why are there separate L1 caches for data and instructions?

Just went over some slides and noticed that the L1 cache (at least on Intel CPUs) distinguishes between data and instruction cache, I would like to know why this is..
9
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6answers
288 views

Can lack of “bit parity” between web server and DB server impact performance?

I had a meeting with a software vendor today about their recommended infrastructure for deploying a particular application. The application needs two servers: an app server for server web pages ...
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18answers
3k views

What equipment do you use to avoid wrist pain? [closed]

I've recently been trying to improve the ergonomics of my workspace, and as a part of that I'm looking into how I can improve the hardware I use. Do you use a standard keyboard, a shaped one, or a ...
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19answers
30k views

Do computer glasses work? [closed]

There are a few different types of "computer glasses" available: Steelseries Scope Gunnar Computer Glasses They seem to be designed for long gaming sessions. Seem a little silly, but thought I'd ...
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3answers
1k views

Laptop like keyboard, trackpad, and monitor combo that I can hook up to my desktop so I can program while reclining on my couch?

My desktop is fine, except that I like programming while reclining on a couch. My legs hurt after sitting too long in an office chair. Is there anything like a keyboard, trackpad, and monitor combo ...
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2answers
621 views

Will large screen increase develop productivity? [closed]

I am considering to buy a desktop computer, but could not determine which size of LCD should I buy. What's the size of your screen, will large LCD(30 inches+) will do good to develop?
13
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4answers
427 views

Can increased usage of higher and higher programming languages lead to a deficit of programmers with computer architecture knowledge?

Quote from Wikipedia of the article "High-level programming language": A high-level programming language is a programming language with strong abstraction from the details of the computer. In ...
11
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4answers
743 views

Does hybrid hard drive improve programming experience? [closed]

I'm tired of how luggish my developments PC is. It's Core2 Duo, 2GB RAM, Seagate ST3500320AS HDD - not the top model, but quite a decent one. Typically I open several copies of Visual Studio 2008, ...
4
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2answers
655 views

Generous budget: what's your ideal setup? [closed]

If you had a generous, but not ridiculous budget (ie no yachts!), describe your ideal setup for programming. What hardware would you have? Desktop and a laptop or just one or the other? How many ...