Designers at CPU Technology Inc. of Pleasanton, Calif., are building a core processing architecture that they say will make it possible to upgrade some of the U.S. military`s embedded electronic systems while retaining the value of existing application software and software development tools. CPU Tech is doing the work under the aegis of the U.S. Navy`s Dual Use Science & Technology program. CPU`s program aims directly at the problem of rapid system obsolescence. Today`s embedded computers often have useful life cycles of no longer than 18 months, while platforms such as aircraft and ships must remain in service for decades. Replacing a microprocessor can require rewriting an entire software program at costs ranging into the millions of dollars. CPU`s approach involves a system on a chip that can be compatible with old processors and that can run old software without changes. It also can run new high-order languages to take advantage of the latest software technology. The project aims specifically at military and commercial avionics, says Gail Walters, CPU Tech`s chief operating officer. For more information, contact CPU Tech by phone at 925-224-9920, by fax at 925-227-0539, by post at 4900 Hopyard Road, Suite 300, Pleasanton, Calif. 94588, or on the World Wide Web at http://www. cputech.com/. — J.K.