April 25, 2024

Key Takeaways from Embedded World 2024

Software Quality
Security & Compliance

Every year, the Embedded World conference brings together top embedded developers, researchers, and innovators to share their knowledge with the international embedded community in Nuremburg, Germany. 

This year continued the tradition, offering a dynamic environment for the growing and diverse global embedded community to connect through keynotes, presentations, and exhibition halls. Perforce’s presence at the event included esteemed brands such as Klocwork, Helix QAC, Helix ALM, Helix Core, Helix IPLM, and Helix Plan — all of which help developers accelerate embedded development. 

Read on to re-live the experience or review our activities at the 2024 event. Plus, read about key takeaways from the event and emerging trends for embedded software development. 

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Perforce participated in two presentation sessions this year to discuss embedded software trends in 2024 and the future of embedded development. 

Static Sentiment Analysis 

Perforce Principal Software Engineer Alex Celeste presented on “Static Sentiment Analysis: Intelligently Finding Hotspots in Intent.” 

Objective analysis like static analysis and type checking can find hard logic errors, but “soft” design-level problems, or code which is simply unclear, are often difficult for tools to help with. That’s where sentiment analysis comes in. 

What is sentiment analysis? 

Sentiment analysis is a machine learning technique that uses natural language processing (NLP) to gain insight into subjective information — such as opinion, emotional tone, or intent — from various sources.

In her presentation, Alex discussed how sentiment analysis can be applied as part of the static analysis pipeline, so that users can better identify: 

  • Areas of a project that should be prioritized for further analysis.
  • Consistent levels of design and style clarity.

She also demonstrated a number of use cases for sentiment analysis as part of the static analysis pipeline, including the ability to: 

  • Detect style violations without the tool needing to be configured with complicated layout guides.
  • Detect failed attempts at implementing design patterns.
  • Prioritize the compute resources available to conventional static analysis by identifying segments with higher apparent “surprise factor” set against the project baseline. 

In addition, the promise of static sentiment analysis allows it to interpret authorial intent, highlighting possible changes in intent beyond the commit logos — which may help development teams identify if further training is needed for a human or an AI author. 

The Current State of Automotive Software Development

Attendees got an early peek under the hood at results from the newly published 2024 State of Automotive Software Development Report. 

Perforce Director of Compliance (and report author) Jill Britton and Product Evangelist Steve Howard presented on key findings in the annual report, including: 

  • Embedded security outpacing safety as a top concern to automotive professionals.
  •  20% increase in the use of MISRA® to fulfill coding standard requirements.
  • Electric vehicle development is quickly becoming the norm.

The full report is now available! Get the insights you need to rev up your dev in 2024.

Download the Full Report

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With diverse representation from today’s embedded community, Embedded World 2024 showcased advanced technologies that increase in complexity every year. 

Embedded Security

Those conference attendees who we spoke with at the event expressed growing concerns about embedded security — now that embedded systems have increasingly complex connected software and devices with more intelligence and autonomy, how do developers know if they have done enough to ensure the security of these systems? 

There are many approaches, security standards, and tools that can help shore up embedded security so that developers are prepared to prevent code vulnerabilities and stop cyberattacks in their tracks. 

For example, translating existing DevOps best practices to build a DevSecOps process for embedded software can help teams automate security during development. 

Using available tools — such as a static analysis tool — built for identifying defects, vulnerabilities, and standards compliance issues as you code is also greatly beneficial for teams who need to ensure security without slowing down development. 

📕 Related Content: See more on Embedded Solutions

Using AI in Embedded Software Development

AI/ML was also a hot topic at this year’s event. In addition to static sentiment analysis, which we spoke about at Embedded World, Design News says that AI technologies are rapidly becoming part of the SDLC, including applications in code generation, debugging, and code review. 

For example, generative AI tools such as Github CoPilot and its integration with Visual Studio Code can provide instant code suggestions and recommendations that accelerate workflows and increase the efficiency of debugging. Developers interested in boosting their productivity can practice using AI tools but should remember their responsibility as human developers to ensure coding best practices are kept. 

Moving Toward Modern Programming Languages

Our experts at Embedded World had many questions involving the adoption of newer programming languages, like Rust and C++. 

While Rust is still not widely used yet in embedded development, interest in the language is growing. For now, embedded developers are using C++ as a more modern language than C. In fact, results from our 2024 State of Automotive Software Development Report showed that in the automotive industry, C++ was the leading programming language for automotive software development (51%), with 50% using C. Rust adoption in the automotive space was 12%. 

It will be interesting to see what happens with Rust in the overall embedded space, as well as with C++. For example, MISRA recently published MISRA C++:2023, which integrates the AUTOSAR C++14 guidelines and supports more recent versions of C++. 

▶️ Related Resource: Demo Video: See the Helix QAC Compliance Module with 100% Rule Coverage for MISRA C++:2023

We also expect to see a wider adoption of the latest versions of C++ in the near future, including C++17 and C++20, which offer algorithm optimization, cleaner code, better performance, and improved safety and security. 

📕 Related Resource: A Brief History of C++
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See You at Embedded World North America!

Perforce is going west later this year to the premiere of Embedded World North America! We hope to see you in the “Silicon Hills” in Austin, Texas for the event, October 8-10, 2024. 

For more information, visit https://embedded-world-na.com/

Whether you attended Embedded World in Germany or plan on attending in the U.S. event this fall, the future of embedded development is something to look forward to. We offer impactful sessions, giveaways, product demos, and a chance to meet our experts to talk about embedded development solutions that get you ahead of the competition. 

Want to get a head start on accelerating embedded development? Sign up for your free 7-day trial of Perforce Static Analysis.

Free Static Analysis Trial

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