Texas Instruments: Beyond The Product Line
Texas Instruments is one of the biggest manufacturers of semiconductors worldwide. They are especially famous for their DSP and Analog components. Away from their product line, the real secret sauce for TI is the level of support and documentation they offer.
TEXAS INSTRUMENTS DOCUMENTATION
I am not talking about direct components datasheets and application notes but documentation that is not related to a specific product. The documents below cover many topics such as Antenna Design, PCB Layout, Analog Design, 6LoWPAN.
- PCB Design Guidelines For Reduced EMI
- High Speed PCB Layout Techniques
- High-Speed Layout Guidelines
- Antenna Selection Quick Guide
- Antenna Selection Guide
- Best of Baker’s Best e-books
- Opamps For Everyone
- Handbook of Operational Amplifier Applications
- Layout Guidelines for Switching Power Supplies
- 6LoWPAN demystified
TEXAS INSTRUMENTS RTOS
Maybe the greatest thing about using a TI based processor is the work that is already done. The user is supplied with drivers and example codes that cover most of the hard work. Leaving him to focus on his application development. These examples and drivers and combined under a free RTOS.
TI-RTOS is a real-time operating system for TI microcontrollers. TI-RTOS enables faster development by eliminating the need for developers to write and maintain system software such as schedulers, protocol stacks and drivers. It combines a real-time multitasking kernel with additional middleware components including TCP/IP and USB stacks, a FAT file system, and device drivers, enabling developers to focus on differentiating their application. TI-RTOS provides a consistent embedded software platform across TI’s microcontroller devices, making it easy to port legacy applications to the latest devices.
TEXAS INSTRUMENTS E2E
E2E stands for Engineer to Engineer. It is an online community of forums, videos and blogs oriented for engineers using TI products. Using the E2E portal, an engineer can post a question and get answers from other more experienced forum members and TI employees.
TEXAS INSTRUMENTS CCS
I have recently installed their Code Composer Studio IDE with GCC compiler. This version is free to use with the XDS100 debugger probe without any limitations. The TI RTOS integrates inside it flawlessly. It is based on Eclipse and it runs on Windows, Mac and Linux. My recent installation was under Ubuntu 14.04 and the installation was straight forward and importing the code couldn’t be easier. I still don’t have enough experience with it to make a judgment but so far things are looking good.
It is great to see how dedicated Texas Instruments is. Of course there are always cheaper semiconductor alternatives on the market, but in my opinion the time saved using the available support is well worth it. Other top manufacturers also offer great support. But I am yet to see a search result covering a general electronics topic coming from other manufacturers as much as I see it from Texas Instruments.