The world around us is becoming increasingly automated. The invention of computers kicked off the age of many tasks being replaced by machines. These machines have changed and are changing everything, from the way we purchase things to the way we entertain ourselves.
Technological advancements only increase the amount of tasks that computers can be used for. Embedded computing technology is allowing for even more automation of our everyday lives.
What is Embedded Computing?
An embedded computer is one that is completely surrounded by the device that it controls. In addition, this computer system only has one purpose, as opposed to a personal computer that performs many general functions. Many of the simple items that we use every day involve the use of embedded systems. For example, your microwave, coffee maker, and alarm clock are all embedded computers.
Furthermore, tech companies like Kontron are driving even more innovation in the use of these systems. This technology is leading to the development of more complex computers that can be used for more difficult tasks. Here are the top 5 areas where embedded computing technology is reshaping the way we live.
1. Gaming and Entertainment
Embedded computers exist in all of our electronic entertainment options, other than personal computers. Televisions, home theater systems, gaming consoles, arcade games and many more all have embedded computers that carry out that specific purpose. Continued innovation in this area only increases the features of these produces, for example a gaming console that can play games, movies, music, and search the web.
Embedded computers are also used in gambling and the lottery as well. Many Americans patronize casinos and play the lottery with hopes they will hit it big. These computer systems are keeping track of individual casino accounts, and all but replacing the need to buy a lottery ticket from the counter.
Many of us carry embedded computers around on us all day long, and we don’t even know it. Smartphones are considered part of this area of technology, all though they function more like a PC. The difference however, is that the smartphone’s computer exists for the purpose of communication, all though the software capabilities allow for that to be extended to entertainment purposes as well.
Mobile devices have completely changed the way we live, with all the information we could ever want at our fingertips. Because of embedded computing, no longer should there be a reason to now know something, these systems help bring everything to us. In addition, these devices allow us to be reachable everywhere, leading to better more accurate communication.
Another area where these technological innovations impact are lives is in the area of commerce. Using smartphones and mobile credit technology, we can accept and make payments from anywhere using the internet. They are also decreasing the need to ever visit a bank.
Traditionally, to get money out of an account or put money into one, one would need to visit the bank.With the advancements of ATM’s over the last decade this need is all but gone. Embedded computer systems are responsible for the development of full service ATM’s. These innovations can make distribute money from an account, but can also take withdrawals in the form of mixed bills or personal checks. While the bank hasn’t been made completely obsolete, it might be well on its way.
Transportation might be the most notable place that embedded computers have spurred innovation. One example of this is our cars. Many things on the modern automobile are now monitored by computers, from the fuel systems to the engine itself. Additionally, these systems are responsible for the highly sophisticated onboard entertainment systems.
Also, these computers allow for a multitude of other features, including cruise control and back up cameras, which both allow for safer travel. Self- driving cars, while not widely-used currently, are also made possible by this technology, and could be the future of travel.
Last but not least, this technology is helping develop new equipment for the medical field as well. The monitors and x-ray machines used in hospitals to track progress are all powered by embedded computers.
Additionally, it is helping develop technology that can reduce injuries had by elderly people living on their own. Using ultra sound technology, these computer systems can easily detect someone who has fallen and can’t get up, in addition to other emergencies. Furthermore, these devices can call the correct emergency response service quicker than most can get to the phone.