What’s in My Living Room?

When Deep first approached me about writing an article on the current tech scene, I was more than happy and was thrilled to bits. It was a perfect opportunity for me, a longstanding desire of mine, as I had always wanted to preach about the capability of Artificial Intelligence, which is perhaps one of the greatest achievements since the advent of computers. This is also my bread and butter since I get paid for writing a lucid 10 lines of code a day.

However as I sat down, in a vague attempt to seek inspiration, I was promptly distracted by our embedded team’s sensors call device. It’s continuously ringing and flashing LED kept barging in my rather idealistic dreams of greatness and world domination, and at this very point, while I was scratching my head and trying to align my jumbled thoughts, I just happened to realize how this robust technology has penetrated steadily into each nook and cranny of our everyday lives.

To my dear reader, here I present to you the dynamic world of embedded engineering. Embedded software engineering, per se, refers to the process of controlling various devices and machines, which are usually different from traditional computers, and this is done via software engineering. This definition might be a little baffling for you, so let me give you a succinct example that’ll surely help explain this idea.

Well this is more so a daily routine for me, and I guess you too would be able to relate to it. So as soon as I walk into my house, after a tiring day out, I first switch on the lights, after which I instantly hurl my heavy bag on the couch. I then fling around my shoes, vaguely aiming those at the wall while I simultaneously put my socks on the dining table, just like any other responsible millennial adult, assuming all are like me! I then barge into the kitchen, invading the fridge and tossing my prepped meal into the microwave. Then just by the time my dinner gets ready, I turn on the Wi-Fi and snuggle into my couch while binge-watching Netflix and scrolling through my Instagram feed. After about two hours or so, I finally decide to retire for the day and I go to my bedroom, turning on the AC and putting my phone on the charger. This is when the Alice in me awakens, and I regularly visit the wonderland wherein AI dominates the world, albeit only while I snore! However, I am pretty sure that my dream is soon going to turn into a reality.

That being said, when I think deeper, my daily encounter with technology is not just limited to Netflix or Instagram, and there’s a lot more in store. All of my evenings are actually powered by software backed products that we usually don’t pay attention to. For instance, my fridge knows how to adjust the cooling with the seasonal changes in temperature, whereas my microwave warms up my food just with the touch of a button. I can easily operate my TV and the air conditioner using a remote control. My phone charger is also quite smart as it charges my phone, ensuring not to ruffle the otherwise compliant and well-behaved phone battery because any kind of malfunction involving the two, could actually kill me! And not to forget, the most magnificent of all is undoubtedly my router that allows my smartphone to work intelligently.

It is important to note that all these devices that have thoroughly eased our lives, would have just been rudderless ships without the embedded software systems. These devices operate seamlessly just by virtue of those otherwise complex codes. Embedded engineers are usually software developers, but it is their versatility and coding rigor that truly sets them apart from all others. Here it’s important to mention that the coding required for embedded systems is not a cakewalk because these systems have very little processing power and memory, which is generally no more than just a few kilobytes. This means that the code must be lightweight and whip-smart. An applicable analogy could be that of coding as an exquisite art form with embedded engineers as the most talented artists. It is important to note that embedding as such is not just about the software itself, but it is rather about integrating the hardware with the software. An embedded engineer cannot completely rely upon calling libraries alone for getting a sensor to work. It requires a deep and comprehensive understanding of the hardware components within the system. And if we delve a little deeper, then the finest advancements that have taken place in the smartphone industry over the past few years such as the Touch ID, Face Unlock, Haptic engine optical image stabilization, and alike, are possible just by virtue of the improvements made in the sensor capability and the embedded software.

Furthermore, now that there’s a push in the IoT systems, the landscape for embedded engineering is set to get a lot more exciting. Embedded systems would soon hold the reins of our lives whether it be the smart lights or the smart appliances, these systems would undoubtedly conquer all spaces. Also, all the data that such devices would generate shall enable products and services to be efficiently built by the developers, and the small IoT enabled devices have already ventured into our homes and factories alike. So just imagine having a fridge that automatically orders our vegetables, isn’t that simply amazing!

Embedded engineers would thus serve as the ultimate bridge who shall help combine the robust software services with physical systems, thus bringing about a one of its kind software revolution. One such similar product about which I would like to mention is the Sensors Call device, a smart health care and wellbeing platform that is specially designed for senior citizens. This dynamic product caters to the senior citizen community without compromising their privacy and dignity. Here’s the link for this product, in case you wish to check it out. (https://www.sensorscall.com/)

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