Virtual Prototypes finds a dual use for VAPS in the auto sector

MONTREAL — Officials at simulation and design specialist Virtual Prototypes in Montreal have joined hands with experts at Telelogic AB in Malmo, Sweden, to create an embedded system design and deployment solution for the automobile industry.

By John McHale

MONTREAL — Officials at simulation and design specialist Virtual Prototypes in Montreal have joined hands with experts at Telelogic AB in Malmo, Sweden, to create an embedded system design and deployment solution for the automobile industry.

Experts from the two companies will cooperate technically to provide a seamless interface between Telelogic`s Tau SDL Suite and Virtual`s VAPS CCG embedded system user interface design and simulation tool for automotive system design and prototyping.

The companies will make graphics, logic, and communication design tools available in one integrated tool suite. Each company will handle sales and support for these products.

Linking the two products "will allow for significant improvements in product development, verification, and testing phases within the automotive industry," says Philippe Collard, president and chief executive officer of Virtual Prototypes. "Used together in simulations, VAPS and Telelogic Tau SDL Suite will speed up the time to market for telematic components."

VAPS already is a popular tool for automotive dashboard design and simulation, "and we are very happy that Virtual Prototypes has decided to offer an interface into our tool," says Martin Grzebellus managing director of the German subsidiary of Telelogic AB.

The modifications necessary for adapting VAPS to the automobile industry involved changing fonts and similar display features, Collard says. Virtual engineers also made allocations for the display resolution in cars, which is lower than Virtual`s traditional market in avionics, he adds.

Telelogic Tau SDL is an integrated software tool suite to help systems designers manage and automate how they develop and maintain real-time communicating systems in a distributed environment.

Telelogic Tau tools enable engineers to program using pictures instead of words, using acronyms and other letter-bound symbols for design phases such as analysis, specification and design, verification, validation, implementation, testing, and maintenance.

Collard says the automotive sector is a natural user of technology used by the military and aerospace community. The problem is that many automakers are not aware that tools like VAPS exist, he adds.

The commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) initiative issued by former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Perry in 1994 has helped reduce the price of high-performance military electronics, thereby making them more affordable to automakers, Collard says.

VAPS helps designers specify, test, simulate, and deploy visual, real-time, interactive 2D graphical user interfaces. VAPS automates all phases of the development and deployment of real-time, data-driven and event-driven graphical human-machine interfaces (HMIs).

VAPS enables users to draw objects intuitively, specify data-driven animation, connect to application data, and specify event/response behavior. VAPS generates ANSI C source code that may be compiled and downloaded to the embedded real-time target system. CCG (C Code Generator) takes VAPS-built HMIs from the prototyping stage to product delivery.

Telelogic AB supplies visual software development and test tools for real-time communication systems. Telelogic Tau is comprised of tools for analysis, design and testing of event-driven, real-time applications.

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