Embedded control: GoFast software libraries for ColdFire processors

Micro Digital’s GoFast floating point library, said to improve speed for higher-level functions, ported to CodeWarrior IDE for Freescale ColdFire processors.
By Control Engineering Staff December 9, 2008

Costa Mesa, CAMicro Digital Inc. announced that it has ported its GoFast floating point library to Freescale Semiconductor’s CodeWarrior tool suite for the ColdFire processor family. Micro Digital says the library is a family of high-performance, reentrant, floating-point libraries designed for embedded applications. They are ANSI C compatible, IEEE 754 compliant, and designed to directly replace a C compiler’s runtime floating-point support (library or coprocessor).
The modules are said to boost performance of an application’s math calculations and, in many cases, to eliminate the need for hardware floating-point coprocessors. The company claims accuracy in most cases of each GoFast Floating Point Library function within one least significant bit (LSB)
The company explains that low-level floating-point functions in the CodeWarrior library are coded in assembly, so the library offers no speed improvement for them. Higher-level functions, however, such as square root, exponent, log, trigonometric, hyperbolic, and others, coded with higher level languages can have performance gains from GoFast from 2:1 to 6:1, or more. Applications that are sluggish on particular hardware can show dramatic improvements in responsiveness, thus avoiding the need to move to a faster processor.
With this higher performance, embedded system developers can realize significant cost savings for GPS, surveying, guidance, and other applications that perform intensive trigonometric calculations. These gains come from reducing hardware cost for a required performance level. Applications involving square roots, exponents, logs, and hyperbolic functions can also achieve significant cost savings, Micro Digital says.
The company says each delivery includes target-specific test programs assuring confidence
C.G. Masi , senior editor
Control Engineering News Desk
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