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Future of Programming

Why Hardware Development Could Mean the future of programming computers?

Computer programming is also known as software development or sometimes it is simply called programming. Whatever
name it’s called, its purpose is to provide instructions to a computer or programmable machine. 

If there is one thing that a computer needs to be able to function (aside from electric power, of course), it would be computer programs.  The executor of the instructions is the central processor, or CPU.

Software is broadly categorized into two functional sections which are the application and system software.  And when it comes to working on these matters, the experts are the so-called computer programmers or software developers.

But where there is software, there should also exist the hardware (or hw, for short).  Generally speaking, hardware devices are any physical things that are being used in computer manipulation.  Examples are printed circuit boards, keyboards, printers and processors.  The development of hardware plays a major role on the advancement of computer programming.   

This is because most programs are accessed by hardware or embedded in it.  This means that some programs stored in the computer can be accessed by an initial program that is stored in its Read Only Memory (ROM) for booting.  The process of booting is to be able to recognize and also initialize all the system components or features.

After the initialization process, the primary program of the computer (usally called basic input/output system or BIOS) would load the operating system which would set the system devices to initiate usual operations.  Totally self-sufficient, a hardware device could have some embedded firmware to control its operation. 

Nowadays, there are a number of hardware development tools in the market.  Along with some software development kits are the hardware development tools that are designed to allow users to have control on design flow processes.

There are many different types to choose from.  There are development boards for hardware that are used in assisting designers for systems and software to validate designs.  

For example, there are tools that are used in System-on-Chip (SoC) prototypes, or there are tools that combine several device features such as flash programmer or memory emulator.

Going back to the basics, there are numerous computer programs that would run concurrently on just one computer.  This process is called multitasking.  And multitasking can run on either software or hardware systems. 

Modern operating systems are able to run several programs through the so-called process scheduling (this is software system that switches the central processor unit from one process to another).  By doing this, users are able to interact with every single program while it's being run.  As to hardware, modern multiprocessors or computers that are equipped with multithread or multicore processor might run several programs simultaneously.

Open Source Hardware

Have you ever heard of the term open source hardware?  There is currently no real definition of this term but this is generally understood as open source software usage on hardware.  Also, this is a free discharge of information on the hardware (release on schematics, size, design and other information).  This is the latest in open source hardware information and logic design sharing is known as open source hardware.

Designers of open hardware often meet to discuss design problems and their corresponding solutions; they also assist each other in looking for parts; they also meet to converse about recent developments in their works.

Since it's believed that the development of software is quite limited, the future progress is now on hardware development.  With the many hardware development tools in the market nowadays, the world could look forward to more innovations in the not-so-distant future… or maybe even tomorrow. 

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