018-019_EETE-VF

EETE SEPT 2013

EEMBC’s floating-point benchmark suite targets MCUs and high-end multicore processors By Julien Happich FPMark is a new benchmark suite that tracks the performance of embedded processors with floating-point hardware units (FPU), an increasingly popular and necessary feature to support graphics, audio, motor control, and many other high-end processing tasks. Just announced by the Embedded Microprocessor Benchmark Consortium (EMBC), FPMark contains single (32-bit) and double (64-bit) precision workloads, as well as a mixture of small to large data sets to support microcontrollers to high-end processors, respectively. The EEMBC FPMark allows users to evaluate FPU performance on the basis of consistent and controlled data, delivering honest, reliable, and unbiased metrics to serve the needs of processor vendors, compiler vendors, and system developers. Using floating-point (FP) representation enables more accurate calculations of fractional values than fixed-point numbers (integers) because exponents allow the decimal point to shift. Moreover, floating-point math makes numerical computation much easier and many algorithms implemented with floating point take fewer cycles to execute than fixed-point code (assuming similar precision). To take advantage of this efficiency, many embedded processors include hardware floating-point units (FPUs) to support these higher levels of precision. The EEMBC FPMark Suite uses 10 diverse kernels to generate 53 workloads, each of which self-verify to ensure correct execution of the benchmark. These workloads are built on the same infrastructure as EEMBC MultiBench, allowing the user to launch multiple contexts and demonstrate multicore scalability, as well as greatly simplifying the effort required to port the benchmarks to bare metal or implementations running Linux. The kernels in FPMark include a mixture of general-purpose algorithms (such as Fast Fourier Transform, linear algebra, Arc- Tan, Fourier coefficients, Horner’s method, and Black Scholes) and complex algorithms (such as a neural network routine, a ray tracer, and an enhanced version of Livermore Loops). Similar to EEMBC CoreMark, certified scores are not required for FPMark, but EEMBC will promote the use of certified scores for members to ensure high-quality results. Cloud-based wireless ECG achieves CE certification By Jean-Pierre Joosting WEB biotech nology Pte Ltd has achieved CE certification for its ECG monitoring system called the Spyder — the first cloud-based continuous ECG monitor. The company, based in Singapore, makes an innovative wireless ECG monitoring system meant to replace traditional hospital remote monitoring systems such as the Holter ECG, which are wired recorders. These are bulky and limited to a maximum of 48 hours of monitoring because they cannot be self-administered. The 48g Spyder employs a leadless sensor, attached directly to the chest and employs a wireless paired smartphone to display the ECG and to transmit signals to a secured cloud server. The inconspicuous sensor allows continuous monitoring for up to three days on a single charge, increasing the sensitivity of detection of abnormal heart rhythms. In trial test in Singapore, patients have worn the system for up to two weeks at a time. For patients, the ability to move about, even travel across borders with the system, is now a reality. The commonest use of the Spyder system would be in diagnosis of symptoms such as palpitations, where abnormal beats or rhythms may be missed if a shorter period of monitoring is employed. Data is transferred wirelessly to a cloud server where algorithms are employed to screen the data. Physicians can access this data through a secure web-based Interface and analyze rhythms from Spyder units under their purview. Traditional hospital systems require patients to return the recorders first for data to be downloaded but as Spyder transmits ECG continuously, data analysis can begin while the patient still has the Spyder on. As the cloud-based solution works in any smart-phone data-enabled location, worldwide remote ECG monitoring is now feasible. A patient, for example, can be in London and his physician can access his ECG from Hong Kong! The Spyder ECG is currently available in Singapore and Malaysia and the company is looking to expand its distribution network to Europe and the Asia Pacific. 18 Electronic Engineering Times Europe September 2013 www.electronics-eetimes.com


EETE SEPT 2013
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