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C / C++ Compilers

The world has changed so much in the past few years as far as C/C++ compilers are concerned. As we have moved towards the web and web based implementations the entire notion of languages, compilation and libraries has changed. The GNU C/C++ compiler has remained relatively static and remains the mainstay of the embedded community.

The changes that we have seen are rooted in Java and .Net as Sun. and Microsoft battled for the hearts and minds of web oriented developers. Java offered a virtual machine with just in time compilation and refined this concept over time. Microsoft responded with .Net which included new languages, just in time compilation and code source security to eliminate the earlier dll hell that they themselves created.

For embedded developers using C/C++ this is not a very comforting world. Ideally, statically linked applications with preallocation of all required resources offer the best approach in the deeply embedded space. These new languages and compilers simply don't address these problems.

Embedded C/C++ developers have been migrating towards the GNU C/C++ compiler as their compiler of choice for some time. It offers reliable operation on a broad set of hardware targets with relatively low costs. The ideas of code security is linked to the operating system, so this idea doesn't often arise (real-time .Net ).

Embedded developers have experimented with a variety of other languages as a replacement to C++ including Java and Lua. They show some promise in this way but are still largely research efforts.

Other vendors offer competitive performance to the GNU C/C++ compiler but the prices are considerably more due to the proprietary nature of the software. Performance differences between compilers are negligible in most medium or large size applications today.

DSPnano and UNISON offer the GNU C/C++ compiler or another substitute compiler for all processors. The standardization on the GNU C/C++ compiler makes the entire environment simpler and lower cost. Other industry leading compiler support is also available.


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RoweBots was founded in May 1987 by a group of Univer­sity researchers. From the outset, RoweBots had its roots in real-time multiprocessor software and has broadened into an embedded signal processing systems company today.

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