Monday, November 10, 2008

004.Software Development method

(This lesson you will find in Computer based training at Basic 1 level)

Laboratory Virtual Instrument Engineering Workbench (LabVIEW) is a graphical programming language that uses icons instead of lines of text to create programs.
You can use a software development method to create LabVIEW solutions.
This method helps programmers in developing code that has greater potential to solve a problem as compared to writing code without a plan. This method also helps to make code more readable, scalable, and modifiable.

At the end of this topic, you will be able to identify steps in the software development method.

The software development method simplifies problem solving using software. The method uses a set of steps that has been refined over the years by software engineers. It is a strategy used by programmers of any programming language to create solutions. You use the software development method to create a solution to your problem

Steps in the Software Development MethodTo use the software development method, you need to complete the following steps.

Define the Problem

During this stage, you define what your problem is so that you can approach it with all the necessary factors identified. You can remove extraneous factors during this phase and focus on the core problem that you must solve. How you identify the problem initially can save you time when you design and implement a solution.

Design a Solution

After you determine the scope of the problem, you can design a solution by analyzing the problem. Part of analyzing the problem is identifying the inputs and outputs of the software, as well as any additional requirements. After you define the inputs and outputs, you can design an algorithm, flowchart, and/or state transition diagram to help you arrive at a software solution.

a.Identifying Inputs

b.Identifying outputs

c.Identifying additional requirements.

Design an Algorithm

After determining the inputs, outputs, and additional requirements, you can create an algorithm. An algorithm is a set of steps that process your inputs and create outputs.

Design a Flowchart

A flowchart displays the steps for solving the problem and can be considered as a visual design of an algorithm. Flowcharts are useful because you can follow complex processes of an algorithm in a visual way. For example, you can consider whether a specific step has two different paths to the end solution and you can plan your code accordingly.

Design a State Transition Diagram

State transition diagrams are a specific type of flowchart that are commonly used when creating LabVIEW state machines. State transition diagrams clearly indicate the states of a program and what causes the program to transition from one state to the next.

Implement the Design

In the implementation stage, you create code for your algorithm or flowchart. When writing code in a text-based language, the algorithm elegantly translates into each line of code, depending on the level of detail shown in the algorithm. Because LabVIEW is a graphical programming language, the flowchart works much the same way, where each block of the flowchart elegantly translates into each icon on the block diagram.

Test and Verify the Implementation

Testing is an important part of the software development method. By testing logical and illogical data, you can ensure that the inputs produce the expected result and that the code has effective error handling

Maintain and Update the Implementation

Maintenance is an ongoing process of resolving programming errors adding parallel construction changes to the original solution for a problem. For instance, in the furnace example, you may discover that after writing the code the customer wants to add a temperature sensor to another area of the oven to add redundancy to the system. Adding features to the program is easier if you plan for scalability in your software from the beginning.

Friday, November 7, 2008

003.Laboratory Virtual Instrument Engineering Workbench

LabVIEW is a Graphical Language,Industrial Standard ,widely accepted and used by world of Researchrs,Scientist and Engineers on various industries.

The expansion of the name LabVIEW is Laboratory Virtual Instrument Engineering Workbench
LabVIEW is developed by an American company called National Instruments Inc.

What is Virtual?
தமிழ்ல சொல்லனும்னா "இருக்கு ஆனா இல்ல".அதாவது பிசிக்கலா இல்ல ஆனா சாப்ட்வேர்-ல இருக்கு.இதைதான் "விர்ச்சுவல்" அப்படின்னு சொல்றோம்.

if you want to use a oscilloscope to measure a signal you no need to go and get an oscilloscope to measure.For you LabVIEW will provide an option to configure the oscilloscope to fulfill your needness.
So Physically the oscilloscope is not there but vitually it is avaialble.This is called Virtual Instrument.
I hope that you understand the term Virtual Instrument.
Coming back to the expansion of understanding the term LabVIEW...

Just imagine you have a bench to do your research or some experiments (any engineering activities).The same way LabVIEW paves you a platform or a bench to do your engineering activites.
The shrinkage of the Laboratory is Lab
Vitual Instrument is VI
Engineering Workbech called as EW.
So after combining all the shortcuts results us as LabVIEW.
Now you knew what is LabVIEW.
Some professional call LabVIEW as G Language.
G for Graphical not Google...:)

The main concept of the LabVIEW are the below 3 things.

Cool Isn't it?
Keeping in the mind the above we will go now the 3 important things in G (Now onwards we will call as G ...OK?)

1. Front panel
2. Block Diagram
3. Icons and connector pane.


It is user interactive program window which comprises user Input and Output terminals for which users can input their feeds and enjoy their results.

The front panel is a combination of controls and indicators. (controls : inputs; indicators:outputs)
Just imagine you are riding a bike.
you are accelerating your bike by means of giving a rise in Accelerator.
This is the input given by the user.
Now you want to know the speed.
Look the speedameter indicator
This is called indicators or output.

Controls = Inputs from the User = Source of Data
Indicators = Outputs to the User = Destinations or "Sinks" for Data
They are generally not interchangeable, so make sure you understand the difference.

Block diagram

It is the coding area of the G.

Icons and connector pane.
The extension of the file is VI for the LabVIEW files.
you will make any VI as a SubVI (like a subprogram) into another VI.


Time to interact more with LabVIEW...

Please download the Evaluation Copy of the LabVIEW software to go ahead further to learn LabVIEW.

It is legal and free to use for anybody.

Here is the link

If you don't have this software you cannot follow me further lessons.

if you want to launch LabVIEW online ..that is without installing in your computer you can launch if you have internet..

here is the link for online launching

I strongly recommend you to install the LabVIEW Evaluation software in your computer instead of online launching.
If you have any problem to get the evaluation copy do not hesitate to comment.

one more thing, normally you should not face any problems during installation but some of my friends encountered few problems during that time.
If you have any issues ..again remember do not hesitate..
Good luck and see you in the next lessons.

002.Pre-requisites to become LabVIEW'er...

Hi Friends,

Here i'm going to tell you what are the pre-requisites needed to become a good basic LabVIEW programmer.

1. Interest. :)
2.Nothing else.

Usually one of my friends says to others regarding LabVIEW is that " LabVIEW is like a MS Office". It has many interesting and hidden features incorporated within it.If you do practice more you will become familiar with it.
The more you spend time with it the more you learn it.

Cool..Isn't it. onwards i'm going to teach you LabVIEW step by step.I'm going to share with you of my findings,shortcuts,the way i learned (still learning!) some documents..etc.

I assume you are little strong with MS Office and having good sense of drawing the flow charts.

I think you remember when you started learning english you must be read about the parts of speech which gives you the best understanding of the sentences.

You must know the parts of speech so that you will be able to construct any meaninful sentence.

the same way you can also apply for LabVIEW as well.

The parts of LabVIEW is same like traditional text based languages and few more and remember always it is easier than them.

Cool...We will see in the next lesson.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

001.Why i like LabVIEW?

Hello Friends,

From here onwards i'm going to share my experinces with LabVIEW from the early days when i heard about it.

What i'm thinking about the Taditional text based Languages?

Keeping on eye in Traditional text based languages and practicing them are somewhat boring,tired and hard to stick with them in long time.
in the day today fast life, we need everything fast,tidy and easy way to find out the solutions for any problems.

When i'm using a text based language, the time consumption is more and more and it was very difficult to troubleshoot my codings.
(Some times even an expert also getting confused while he debugs my codes.And as usual finally the codes are gone to garbage).

From my mistakes i give up with the text based traditional languages and after some time i came to know that due to the lack of modularity and lack of interst in the working style i'm keep on failing!

Why my most of the hardworks and times has to go as a Garbage?

This is the question that arises in my mind whenever i taste the failures.
And the most important thing is that it will affect your appraisal very badly as well.

Why i need a change in text based tools?

No interst in text based language at all..:)
Not much graphical usage used
difficult to troublshoot

Thinking to change the career:-

when i'm having a mood wanted to change my same boring work,that time i came to know LabVIEW through the Job Advertisement stating "LabVIEW Professionals" needed!

Thinking of LabVIEW

I started thinking of LabVIEW and enquiring about it with my friends and putting my time in internet to know more about it.
The texture,the flow,the standardization,the tailor made solution,the simplicity,the intersting factors, the tutorials,the help incorporated and the time consumption in learning and implementing.......etc they are the facts which suits my need and interst!

They are amazing........becoz i like all the features.

LabVIEW is the first language which i started loving it........before learning that!!

we will see in the coming posts regarding my learning curve with LabVIEW ,how i'm implementing in my work and what are all the problems i encountered..

Post your comments if you are also a LabVIEW lover...!!