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

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Commercial product using a GPL OS

we are planning to create a commercial product. The product consists of some MCUs and a small computer (we are developing on a Raspberry Pi at the moment). The computer needs an operating system as ...
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Understanding the levels of computing

Sorry, for my confused question. I'm looking for some pointers. Up to now I have been working mostly with Java and Python on the application layer and I have only a vague understanding of operating ...
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Is it the job of a developer to suggest IT requirements?

I am the only developer working on a web application which is nearing to its end. Now we are looking into making it Live in maybe a couple of months time. This is a web application for a non IT ...
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4answers
794 views

GPL licensed software installed on commercial hardware

Do vendors need to provide sources, at the customer's request, for GPL licensed software installed on the hardware they sell? For example, a vendor sells an IPTV box and pre-installs some proprietary ...
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2answers
174 views

Calculations in Vector Register

How do vector registers work in terms of calculations and alloting data to them ? Is there a detailed reference available somewhere explaining how vector registers work and how data is fetched from ...
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3answers
2k views

How can I send a signal to a program via external hardware

I am trying to find a piece of hardware that will signal a program to start a timer when it is moving and stop when it stops. The hardware can just be a ball that moves and is connected to the ...
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1answer
313 views

Why fewer IRQLs in 64-bit, even though an APIC has more interrupt lines?

As x86 computers shifted from 32-bit to 64-bit, they also shifted from using 8259-style Programmable Interrupt Controllers with 8 interrupt lines. (Or two multiplexed PICs for a total of 15 interrupt ...
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15answers
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How have languages influenced CPU design? [closed]

We are often told that the hardware doesn't care what language a program is written in as it only sees the compiled binary code, however this is not the whole truth. For example, consider the humble ...
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3answers
951 views

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

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
227 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
413 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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6answers
552 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
500 views

Diving into microcontroller programming [closed]

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
1k 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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4answers
732 views

How can a programmer keep up with the hardware world? [closed]

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
6k 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 ...
3
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1answer
346 views

Getting in to smart card programming [closed]

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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6answers
26k 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
924 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
2k 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
173 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
2k 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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3answers
1k 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
4k views

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

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
233 views

What are the absolute, minimal 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
777 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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0answers
761 views

Slow developer machines - approach with vmware good? [duplicate]

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
306 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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1answer
138 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 ...
3
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1answer
666 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
3k 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
243 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
5k 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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3answers
172 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
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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
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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..
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6answers
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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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7answers
4k views

What parts of my computer should I upgrade first to speed up development? [closed]

I use Eclipse, and the two most noticeable slowdowns caused by my computer are waiting for compiling and waiting for intellisense. I already have a fast SSD drive and 3GB of ram. I'm guessing that ...
14
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4answers
519 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 ...
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4answers
887 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, ...