Embedded: Porting MatLab to an embedded system near you

The Mathworks eased development of compute-intensive applications for embedded systems by introducing Embedded Matlab, a subset of the company’s popular Matlab suite of software. The set of functions enables users to generate highly efficient, embeddable C code directly from Matlab programs, avoiding the time-consuming and error-prone process of rewriting algorithms in C after developing and testing them in Matlab.


Natick, MA

The Mathworks

eased development of compute-intensive applications for embedded systems by introducing Embedded Matlab ,Matlab.

Embedded Matlab allows users to develop and test mathematically complex algorithms in Matlab, then convert the software to C code directly, according to

The conversion to C code is performed by Real-Time Workshop 7, a MathWorks product widely used for embedded code generation. Real-Time Workshop automatically produces embedded C that is comparable to hand coding in size, performance, and memory use. It allows a user to generate code from Matlab M-files, or include a call to the M-file by name in a Simulink block diagram. If Simulink is used, synthesizable Verilog and VHDL can also be generated via the Simulink HDL coder. In either case, the generated code is numerically equivalent to the Embedded Matlab source code.

“In the past,” says Ken Karnofsky, marketing director of signal processing and communications at The Mathworks, “embedded system developers could use Matlab to write test data and create nice graphical displays controlled by Simulink. What they couldn’t do was that final connecting of the dots; they just couldn’t get that algorithm into embedded code in an efficient manner.”

The Embedded Matlab subset covers a broad range of Matlab functionality with more than 270 operators and functions and more than 90 Fixed-Point Toolbox functions. It also supports many high-level language features, such as multidimensional arrays, real and complex numbers, structures, flow control, and subscripting, company says.

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