Blog

6 min read

The Future of Touchless Public Touchscreens and Embedded GUIs

By Jason Clarke on Sep 16, 2020 8:19:20 AM

It’s clear that COVID-19 has people rethinking long established cultural habits, such as shaking hands and standing close to others. It is also reshaping our technology habits, as people become less comfortable with touching the public surfaces of self-serve supermarket displays, information kiosks, and ATMs. Leading hand-tracking and haptics tech company, Ultraleap, recently published their 'The End of Public Touchscreens' study whitepaper with research that confirms this: people are rapidly changing their attitudes about public touchscreens due to the virus.

For those of us building embedded systems, this raises the important question: how do you best design a touchless public interface in a hygiene-sensitive society? What is the future of touchscreens in a world where a touch can mean anything from connection to bioweapon? While devices reserved for private use – those in the home or on one’s person – can be used without consideration of contamination, from here on out any devices used by the public may need to reconsider their embedded graphical user interface.

Creating a dialog with gesture-based GUIs

One way to create a touch-less GUI (or user interface, UI) is to use gesture recognition technology. A gesture-based UI creates a dialog between human and machine where the machine serves up screens full of information, and the human provides input through natural hand motions in front of (or above) the screen.

While gesture technology has been widely available since the Microsoft Kinect released in 2010, the most widespread public acceptance beyond gaming has been in automotive applications used by BMW and others. The benefits of a gesture controlled HMI are many: there are no hygiene issues with touching surfaces, there is no mechanical wear of buttons or switches, and it can be operated in areas with loud background noise.

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2 min read

How to choose the correct hardware for embedded GUI apps

By Scott Snider on Sep 9, 2020 9:00:46 AM

When building an embedded system there are many choices you will face when deciding the correct hardware and software combinations to best get your product to market. Hardware capabilities, performance, power requirements, memory types, OS implications, packaging options, platform scalability and interoperability are just some of the considerations you will have to work through in the early stages. Most of these decisions can be answered with research, testing, and peer discussion. When it comes to your GUI application however, we’re committed to ensuring that it is created using all the best practice principles our customers have learnt along the way.

READ PAPER ▸

In our downloadable Best Practices Using Storyboard guide, our goal is to ensure your Storyboard application is created from the onset with these best practices in mind, and optimized for the hardware platform you’ve chosen. As a platform-agnostic framework, Storyboard can be used to build applications on a wide range of hardware platforms, and as such, your decision to use Storyboard should not influence which hardware you finally select.

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3 min read

Extending the Life of Your Embedded GUI

By Jason Clarke on Sep 2, 2020 8:56:00 AM

Ask any embedded GUI developer or designer about re-building your product’s user interface, and you’ll probably be met with groans. Creating user interfaces can be a long, laborious process and replacing them is usually something you want to do as infrequently as possible. This is true even considering best practices like using embedded software tools that enable simple screen design or coding practices that enforce cleanly separated business logic.

That’s because the bulk of the effort in creating embedded GUIs is:
- The heavy lifting of designing user workflows.
- The creation of attractive visual elements.
- Taking human-factors engineering into account.
- Performing usability tests.

Once your embedded GUI is built-out, your team needs to develop UI test suites to give you the confidence that things aren’t broken by bug fixes. Once that's done, there’s the downstream impacts to user documentation and product support that can mean substantial rework.

When you have your UI right the first time, it pays to keep it as long as humanly possible.

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19 min read

A Proven Framework: Maintaining a Responsive Embedded GUI with UI Task Prioritization

By Thomas Fletcher on Aug 26, 2020 11:06:27 AM

Thomas Fletcher, Co-Founder and lead Storyboard product guy, talks UI task prioritization in our Embedded GUI Expert Talks with Crank Software. By watching a replay of Thomas’ live video or by following along the transcript below, understand: how you can take advantage of priority selection and task scheduling for the greatest effect with your embedded user interfaces. You’ll also learn the common priority and scheduling schemes, and how the choices you make in task priority selection can have a significant impact on the quality of your embedded device’s user experience.

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23 min read

How to use glue logic to connect your data with UI elements within an embedded GUI

By Thomas Fletcher on Aug 13, 2020 9:00:00 AM

Thomas Fletcher, Co-Founder and VP of R&D and lead Storyboard product guy, talks glue logic, and how glue logic is a connective piece that allows product development teams to build better embedded user interfaces, in our Embedded GUI Expert Talks with Crank Software.

By watching a replay of Thomas’ live video or by following along the transcript below, understand: the pros and cons of 3 types of glue logic, how to implement the 3 different approaches, cost comparisons, and how embedded technologies like our embedded GUI development platform Storyboard, can make implementing glue logic easier.

 

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3 min read

We're an Ottawa Top Employer (according to our employees) again!

By Alecia O'Brien on Aug 11, 2020 1:50:58 PM

When it comes to attracting Crankonauts, we know that having a positive company culture has been invaluable in establishing our reputation, and our ability, to attract the best of the best. Our Founders value our corporate culture incredibly highly and its importance in creating engaged employees who feel connected to their place of employment.

It was thus received with great applause when we heard from Invest Ottawa, the economic development agency, that our employees had given us such a high rating that we were ranked as one of Ottawa's Top 3 Employers in their eNPS Benchmarking Pilot Program.  

In February 2018, Crank was also awarded as an outstanding workplace and employer with an Employee's Choice Award.

In February, Invest Ottawa surveyed all of our employees to gauge their level of loyalty through a likelihood-to-be-recommend question “What is the likelihood that you would recommend Crank Software to a friend or colleague?".

An eNPS (employee Net Promoter Score) score of >20 is considered strong.  In this program, the average was 56.

Crank's eNPS score was an astounding 76/100

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5 min read

How to design an embedded GUI for future migration between MCU and MPU.

By Alecia O'Brien on Jul 29, 2020 12:16:17 PM

When designing an embedded system with an MCU, one of the hardest tasks for an engineering team is deciding on the type of “brains” their new electronic product really requires. While there are really only two (and some in between) choices to choose from, the decision made can influence (and constrain) future GUI decisions.  

It is also essential to consider the implications of the graphical user interface (GUI) development software you choose to use on it.  You need to ask your embedded GUI software vendor if the GUI you create with them will scale across their (or others) hardware with ease at a later date. Some software companies, usually the free ones included with the hardware, restrict this to the same processor family. 

Mapping out a migration path for potential hardware change is critical to ensuring a longer life for your product, and ensuring you make the right hardware and GUI software decisions. Fortunately, you have options.

FIGURE 1: One of these EMBEDDED GRAPHIC SAMPLES runs on an MCU, one on an MCU. Can't spot the graphics difference though. SCALE YOUR GUI WITH STORYBOARD.
 

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15 min read

Optimizing Image Graphic Memory in Embedded GUIs (part 2)

By Thomas Fletcher on Jul 22, 2020 1:42:22 PM

Thomas Fletcher, Co-Founder and VP of R&D, talks on the specific use case of building rich UIs populated with images and graphics and how you can get all of the resources to fit in your embedded system in our Embedded GUI Expert Talks with Crank Software. Or as Thomas likes to summarize as “making good computer memory and image choices”. 

By watching a replay of Thomas and Rodney's live Youtube video or by following along the transcript below, learn how to: use frame buffers to optimize image memory, understand the decode phase, use hardware accelerators and other technologies for decompression, and look at further graphics optimization solutions. If you missed part 1 on embedded graphics and memory optimization considerations, click here.

Or, jump straight ahead to the question and answer portion of the live video.

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16 min read

What font types should you use in your embedded GUI project?

By Thomas Fletcher on Jul 15, 2020 11:07:45 AM

Thomas Fletcher, Co-Founder and VP of R&D, and Rodney Dowdall, Product Architect, talk about the font options product development teams have available to them when it comes to designing their embedded UI project in our Embedded GUI Expert Talks with Crank Software.

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5 min read

Tips for embedded GUI developers working from home

By Sarah Collie on Jun 16, 2020 11:01:36 AM

If you had have asked me (pre-Covid), what a typical day of an embedded user interface (UI) developer looked like, I would have answered with something like standup meetings with my teammates, working with clients, developing at my desk, and testing UI applications on physical hardware in our lab. As we all know however, the world is no longer the same and those in-office days are on pause. Fortunately, I’ve been able to quickly pivot and continue working and developing from home, with little to no impact on my productivity or client deliverables with the following tools and techniques that we've created in this fun infographic for you to share.

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6 min read

Getting Started with Storyboard: Tips for Your Next Embedded GUI Development Project

By Alecia O'Brien on Jun 10, 2020 11:34:01 AM

Who says that developing a compelling, user-friendly graphical user interface (GUI) for your next touchscreen device has to be complicated? At Crank Software, we believe that the most simplistic and intuitive solutions are the most effective – and fun to use. With Storyboard, our dedicated embedded GUI development platform, you’ll enjoy the journey as much as your audience will enjoy interacting with the finished product. Let’s go over some essential tips to help make your GUI project a reality!

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2 min read

Trends in industrial embedded UI displays - an interview with Bob O'Brien from DSCC

By Alecia O'Brien on Jun 3, 2020 8:37:08 AM

At Embedded World 2020, we were fortunate to cross paths with Bob O'Brien, co-Founder and President of Display Supply Chain Consultants, a small consulting firm in the flat panel display industry. DSCC, as they are otherwise known, are well known for their supply chain expertise on all display-based products and industry revenue trends and forecasting. At EW, we asked Bob for his opinion on the biggest challenges and trends impacting embedded displays today. Here's what he had to say.

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6 min read

A revolution in embedded user interfaces. An interview with EE Journal.

By Alecia O'Brien on May 28, 2020 11:08:20 AM

We're fans over here at Crank of the Electronic Engineering Journal (EE Journal) so we jumped at the chance to be interviewed by Amelia Dalton on her Weekly Fish Fry podcast. In this week's episode, Jason Clarke, VP Sales & Marketing chatted with Amelia about the trends in embedded user interfaces (UIs), and challenges that teams typically face when it comes to the design and development of their device graphics, and how Crank came to be.

Click to listen to the podcast or read the transcript underneath.

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4 min read

The rise of voice activation and what it means for embedded user interfaces

By Jason Clarke on May 20, 2020 11:42:26 AM


Voice recognition technology continues to grow in both capacity and popularity. The original technology was rather primitive – you may remember struggling with it while attempting to navigate a business’s automated attendant trying to perform even the simplest tasks. Thanks to enhancements in speech recognition technologies and cloud-driven digital assistants from big players like Amazon, Apple, Google, and Microsoft, the state-of-the-art has come a long way. The current word error rate of a voice recognition engine is around five percent, which at this point is very nearly what humans achieve (four percent). We have made huge strides: by comparison, the lowest error rate 20 years ago for unconstrained speech was 43 percent. Highly stilted grammars are also a thing of the past; instead, we communicate with our devices using natural flowing speech.

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13 min read

Memory Optimization Considerations for Embedded GUIs (part 1)

By Thomas Fletcher on May 14, 2020 9:00:00 AM

Understanding and accounting for the different memory requirements of your embedded graphics application is critical. Your choice of system-level memory (heap, stack, static code), and hardware level can not only impact graphics performance, but also compromise the user experience, and thus market success of your embedded UI.

In this first of two videos on embedded graphics memory optimization, Thomas Fletcher, Crank Software's Co-Founder and VP R&D, talked about the different memory optimization options available for those building on MCUs and MPUs, and how to organize memory use for highest performance. You can watch the replay by clicking the video, or read the transcript pasted below.

To catch part 2 of this series of memory optimization considerations for embedded graphics, jump ahead here.

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13 min read

How remote teams successfully design and develop embedded GUIs

By Thomas Fletcher on May 7, 2020 2:19:33 PM

Embedded systems and UI development can be complicated. Factor in social distancing and product teams being forced to continue development remotely, and the situation has become even more complex. But it doesn’t have to be! 

Thomas Fletcher, Co-Founder and VP of R&D, talks about the embedded UI development tools our clients and own team are leveraging today to connect remotely and keep embedded projects moving forward, in our first of many Embedded GUI Expert Talks with Crank. 

By watching a replay of Thomas' live Youtube video or by following along the transcript below, you’ll learn about our feature update for the Storyboard IO Connector and its support for TCP/IP, and how you can leverage it to inject events over a network. This effectively decouples the need for the UI and back-end to be physically deployed in the same location.

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13 min read

What Are The Differences Between MCUs and MPUs for Embedded Graphics? MCUs and MPUs Explained.

By Thomas Fletcher on Apr 30, 2020 10:56:02 AM

There are fundamental differences in developing embedded UI applications for MCUs and MPUs. But as MCU performance and functionality continue to improve, the boundaries between the two have become murky.

By watching a replay of Co-Founder and VP of R&D Thomas Fletcher’s live Youtube video or by following along the transcript below, learn about the changing landscape in MCU versus MPU capabilities and what you need to consider when evaluating your next embedded project’s hardware options, in one of the first (of many) Embedded GUI Expert Talks with Crank.

Or, jump straight ahead to the question and answer session from the live video.

 

We’re looking at the roles of MPUs and MCUs in the context of embedded UI development and working through a few scenarios of how microcontrollers and microprocessors have changed. This is the start of a series where we're going to be exploring how embedded UIs work in these two different configurations. But we thought we'd start the series with just enough information to establish a baseline. What is an MPU? What is an MCU? How are they different? We're going to start with that and put in the context of embedded UI development.

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3 min read

Expert Interview Series: Trends in Embedded UIs with Sebastian Ullherr

By Guest Author on Apr 23, 2020 11:41:50 AM

Interview #2

The Crank Software team met up with Sebastian Ullherr, Managing Partner of interfacewerk, at Embedded World 2020 to chat about the trends and innovations he's seen in the embedded space. 

Sebastian Ullherr believes that UX design is the key to every good embedded product. By basing design and feature decisions on facts, he thinks we can save ourselves a lot of time, money, and frustration.

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3 min read

Expert Interview Series: Trends in Embedded UIs with Karlheinz Blankenbach

By Guest Author on Apr 14, 2020 1:12:55 PM

Interview #1

The Crank Software team met up with Karlheinz Blankenbach, Electronics Displays Conference chair and professor, at Embedded World 2020 to chat about the trends and innovations he's seen in the embedded space.

Karlheinz Blankenbach is an experienced professor with a long history of working in research and development for HMI displays and LEDs including optical measurements and system design.

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2 min read

A Message From Our President: COVID-19 Update

By Brian Edmond on Apr 6, 2020 4:37:21 PM

My thoughts are with you and your loved ones during these uncertain times, and like so many, it’s tough to hear updates about the impacts COVID-19 is having on our communities every day. 

Here at Crank Software, we’re continuing to monitor this situation closely and wanted to take a moment to summarize some of the things we are doing to keep you connected.

The good news is that I am so proud of the worldwide team we’ve built at Crank. During these tough times, our entire team at Crank Software are thinking positively and doing everything we can to support our community. We’re all experienced in remote work and setup to keep things moving forward, to ensure you’re as successful as possible right now.

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5 min read

The challenge of realizing great UI experiences on embedded devices.

By Thomas Fletcher on Mar 17, 2020 11:01:57 AM



A rich UI prototype can be an amazing thing. It can bring an existing product back to life and give it a competitive advantage, or it can be so transformative that it creates a brand new cutting-edge category.

It's easy to capture this UI potential with rich graphics and a storyboard that walks a user through an exciting experience full of animation and life. With this potential comes the power to sell a product, however, the challenge of moving from prototype through development and to product deployment is not to be underestimated. The price that you pay for a rich UI experience is measured in terms of increased product software complexity, hardware requirements, and time.

... with the traditional model including a design team building the script of a user experience, without the commitment to be engaged throughout the rest of the application design.

Storyboard allows a different approach to the development of rich, interactive user interfaces and helps address the challenges of making those experiences a successful reality in cost-effective embedded products.

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4 min read

Focus on your user experience: Testing and validation for your embedded UI performance just got faster.

By Marisha Sesto on Mar 12, 2020 10:30:16 AM

We're so excited to announce our latest release of Storyboard.  With a focus on making UI design and development easier for our customers worldwide, we’ve made it our mission to allow teams to collaboratively work together in creating award-winning touch screen experiences. With remote work increasing and teams no longer forcing face-to-face meetings due to innovative technology, our Storyboard product release makes it much easier to cross-collaborate with development and design teams around the world to develop an embedded UI product that wows their users.



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6 min read

Partner Feature: Unleashing a world of smart possibilities with iWave, Crank Software & the NXP i.MX8 series.

By Guest Author on Mar 10, 2020 11:30:47 AM

Thanks to Lavanya Markandachari at Crank Partner, iWave Systems, for this guest post.

Crank Software and iWave Systems partnered up to support rich graphics on the powerful NXP i.MX 8 series system on modules and SBC boards. 

Powered by NXP i.MX8 application processors, the SOM and SBC are optimized for sophisticated real-time computing in embedded applications, and Crank Software’s UI development software, Storyboard, complements the high-performing modules with an out-of-the-box GUI experience. 

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3 min read

Rich graphics development for touch screen products with μC3 & Storyboard in your tech stack.

By Guest Author on Mar 3, 2020 11:02:18 AM

Thanks to our partner Satoshi Sasaki , General Manager at Crank Partner, uQuest, for this guest post.

Crank Software’s UI development software now supports μC3, Japan’s leading RTOS. With μC3 being one of the major iTRON RTOS in Asia and users now having access to the award-winning software, Storyboard, embedded development teams can create rich graphics for their touch display HMI products with ease.

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4 min read

Winning Worldwide: Crank Software Named Most Innovative at Embedded World 2020.

By Marisha Sesto on Feb 25, 2020 4:02:14 PM

Updated on March 5, 2020.

The Crank team hopped on a plane and left the cold Canadian winter behind heading to our biggest industry event of the year in Nuremberg, Germany. Packed with maple syrup, Tim Hortons coffee, toques, and coffee crisps; the crew was armed to take on Embedded World 2020 to talk the latest in embedded UIs (Hall 4, Booth 459). As day one came to a close, we were thrilled to be honoured and presented first place in the Embedded Award software category for Most Innovative.

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4 min read

Showing off next-gen embedded UIs at Embedded World 2020.

By Marisha Sesto on Feb 5, 2020 10:36:32 AM


The biggest embedded event of the year. 

The team at Crank is busy preparing for our biggest event of the year, Embedded World. From the latest trends to the best designs, we’re excited to talk all things embedded UIs. We’ll be showcasing next-gen embedded UIs powered by Storyboard at our booth (Hall 4, Booth 459). If you’re attending, come say hi and chat with our experts about: 

  • How to reduce your BOM with Storyboard Lite
  • How to save battery power with Hybrid Rendering  
  • Our upcoming Storyboard release
  • The newest boards from our partners
  • Who’s using Crank Software and Storyboard to get to market faster
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2 min read

On-Demand Webinar with NXP: Graphics for IoT Devices with the i.MX 8Nano.

By Marisha Sesto on Jan 27, 2020 4:06:34 PM

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1 min read

On-Demand Webinar with NXP: Introducing Storyboard with MCUXpresso.

By Marisha Sesto on Jan 9, 2020 1:51:31 PM

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5 min read

How to create brilliant embedded UIs without sacrificing battery life.

By Jason Clarke on Dec 12, 2019 10:12:52 AM

Battery life is one of the most important features of a mobile device. When your mobile device’s time between charges is four days versus four hours, the gain in device usability (and user appreciation) is immense. If, on the other hand, your device has no power left after a few hours of use, your phone doesn’t work and, let’s face it, a non-working phone provides quite the lousy user experience. The same goes for battery-charged products.

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6 min read

Top 5 Embedded UI/UX Trends of 2020, According to Industry Experts.

By Alecia O'Brien on Nov 28, 2019 9:54:37 AM

In today’s digital world where information is aplenty and attention spans are limited, companies are constantly looking for new ways to engage with consumers. From the first interaction to the remainder of the customer journey, rich graphical user interfaces, and interactive user experiences play a critical role shaping each step. While this may seem like a relatively new concept, it is just the beginning. Six industry experts were asked their opinion on the top embedded UI/UX trends of 2020 and this is what they said.

Note: if you're keen to learn more about the latest in UX trends for embedded HMIs, make sure you check out our on-demand video: "Hello World" for UI designers, How to design for an optimal UX on embedded HMI systems."

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4 min read

Celebrating Innovation: Crank Software Named 2019 Company of the Year at the #OttBOBs.

By Marisha Sesto on Nov 22, 2019 9:56:19 PM

Innovation and technology have radically changed the way we work and live. And we love being at the center of it. Literally. Crank Software’s HQ is located in Canada’s largest technology park, recognized as a “hotbed of technology innovation” that’s impacting the world’s future every day. With 500+ companies and 19,000+ tech jobs in the park alone, Ottawa is the #1 most technology intensive city in Canada.

Crank Software doesn’t just talk innovation. Crank Software pours innovation into every product update, every meeting and every idea in our day-to-day. Innovation isn’t just a buzzword to us. It’s our culture. We’re not afraid of the unknown, we don’t stay quiet, and we love a good challenge. That’s why we’re so excited to celebrate the risks and ideas that got us to where we are today.

(Credit: Kanata North Business Association, #SeriousTechLivesHere.)

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5 min read

What you need to know when considering squeezing into a microcontroller to build an embedded GUI.

By Jason Clarke on Nov 19, 2019 1:15:48 PM

If you’ve been following our blog or have downloaded our eBook around best practices for embedded UI development on microcontrollers (MCUs) to microprocessors (MPUs), then you’ll know that squeezing your application into a microcontroller is one of the best ways to reduce your product’s bill of materials.

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4 min read

Crank GUI Services: Why Vorwerk & other billion dollar brands work with us.

By Alecia O'Brien on Nov 5, 2019 2:48:43 PM


As a cutting-edge software company focused on brilliant user experiences, we make sure we're always in-the-know when it comes to the latest innovations in the tech world, so we're always ready to help the next group of innovative leaders. We're noticing that more and more, smart technologies are giving people back the time they currently spend on doing day-to-day activities around the house. This includes smart kitchen tech: planning, preparing, and cooking food...

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4 min read

Is the free TouchGFX STM32 GUI builder right for your next embedded project?

By Jason Clarke on Oct 28, 2019 11:03:15 AM



If you’re using an STM32 microcontroller, you may have noticed that STMicroelectronics now bundles in free graphics software from TouchGFX as part of STM32Cube software packages. And you may be wondering if it makes sense to use for your next embedded GUI project.

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3 min read

Don't get lost in translation, Storyboard's latest update makes it easy to internationalize your embedded UI.

By Scott Snider on Oct 24, 2019 11:23:40 AM

We're excited to announce our latest release of Storyboard. As a UX and customer-focused software company, we make a point to focus on regular, smaller updates too - primarily focused on improving the experience of existing features. But that doesn't mean we don't make room to sneak in some great new features too - especially ones that improve our customers' experience with Storyboard. We're excited. Watch our video and get excited too. Want more details? Read on below...

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4 min read

The challenge of code reuse - and what you can do about it when building GUIs

By Thomas Fletcher on Oct 18, 2019 10:05:15 AM

Systematically developing high-quality reusable software components and frameworks has traditionally been a tall order. Many developers successfully reuse code snippets from one program to another, which saves a certain amount of development time; however, this practice does little compared to leveraging assets like architectures, components, and frameworks.

There are a number of reasons (both technical and non-technical) why software reuse is difficult, particularly in companies with a large installed base of legacy software and developers. One of the reasons we see most frequently – and one of the easiest to correct – is the failure to separate business logic from the UI (user interface). Projects with interwoven business logic and UI code are time-consuming and tedious to convert over to new screen sizes, hardware platforms, or operating systems - a common requirement.

There are four steps you need to take if you are building products with embedded GUIs (graphical user interface) and want to take advantage of code reuse in a systematic fashion. Although it’s Storyboard-specific, the central ideas are applicable elsewhere.

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2 min read

Webinar with Toradex: Intro to creating rich UIs with Storyboard on NXP i.MX 8 with Torizon.

By Alecia O'Brien on Oct 15, 2019 10:26:23 AM

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4 min read

Why consider a microcontroller for your most profitable embedded product release yet.

By Jason Clarke on Oct 2, 2019 11:29:18 AM

When it comes to the buying patterns of North American consumers, the market is changing. It used to be that you could make one dishwasher, one toaster, and one vacuum cleaner to attract a mass audience but that is less and less the case. Successful brands now target both the high-end as well as the low-end of the market for several reasons. 

Why do brands target both the high-end and low-end of the market?

  • Hourglass economy – Upscale consumers look for luxury while those less affluent look for value
  • Brand loyalty – Young consumers become loyal long-term purchasers at the low end when they form early buying habits
  • Tech adoption curve – Early adopters are less cost-sensitive and pay more for the latest tech while technology laggards do not
  • Marketing trial – Upscale products are a great way to test new ideas before building products at volume
  • Competition – Multiple product price levels help companies grab market share away from competitors
  • Shelf space – Product proliferation captures more attention in both bricks-and-mortar and online stores
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5 min read

The 3 hottest embedded UI  trends to see at Smart Kitchen Summit 2019.

By Alecia O'Brien on Sep 25, 2019 9:16:28 AM



The kitchen is becoming one of the tech scene’s fastest growing spaces. It makes sense: the kitchen is the center of the home – where we nourish ourselves, bond with our families, and socialize with friends.  New technologies are bursting into the smart kitchen scene with the intent to give people back the time they currently spend planning, preparing, and cooking food. It’s a long-awaited combination: food ecosystem meets modern tech.

We have our own insights about where kitchen tech is going through our work helping customers develop cutting-edge consumer products, especially as it relates to those with embedded UIs. But to get a fresh perspective, we decided to talk to Michael Wolf, publisher of the Spoon and creator of the Smart Kitchen Summit (SKS), to ask him what epic trends we could expect to see at this year’s show in Seattle, Washington.

The 3 hottest kitchen trends to see at SKS 2019 are...
Trend #1: Consumer products with multi-modal inputs 
Trend #2: Software-defined appliances
Trend #3: Embedded projection screens

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4 min read

How to shift your product market to the high-margin, high-growth segment.

By Jason Clarke on Sep 17, 2019 11:22:20 AM

For many years, product success was based on mass marketing, mass production, and massive retailers. But the world has changed. More and more people are choosing to pay a premium for fewer but higher quality goods. This trend of premiumization is creating new markets for Coach purses, BMW sedans, and Callaway golf clubs with younger, less affluent buyers. Of course this trend applies to high-tech purchases too – Nielsen reports that 29 percent of North American customers are willing to pay top dollar for their personal electronics.

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3 min read

How we resolved a coffee conundrum with a Storyboard UI

By Courtney Stevenson on Sep 2, 2019 11:55:27 AM

 

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5 min read

Why you should include Hybrid Rendering in your next IoT or wearables project

By Brian Edmond on Aug 7, 2019 12:07:14 PM



If you haven’t heard the term hybrid rendering before, that’s because it’s pretty new. Broadly speaking, hybrid rendering generates graphics by using multiple distinct paths through silicon. One example is creating CGI movie frames using both a GPU and a CPU however, we at Crank use the term for something that is much more useful for embedded developers and designers: rendering a user interface with multiple graphics accelerators.

If this feat seems intriguing or even confusing – read on.

In the embedded domain, hybrid rendering means creating a user interface with both a 3D GPU and a secondary graphics processor within the same application. The secondary graphics processor must be able to accelerate 2D graphics (this is typically a composition core but other options are possible). The application dynamically switches between accelerators at run-time, depending on what graphics need to be displayed.

An example of silicon with the right magic is the NXP 7ULP which has both an Open GL ES GPU as well as a 2D GPU accelerator/compositor. The 2D GPU is very powerful and can accelerate alpha blending, scaling, rotation/mirroring, overlays, lines, rectangles, color space conversion, and more, with much less power consumption than its 3D GPU equivalents.

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3 min read

Elevating the role of the embedded UI designer

By Jason Clarke on Jul 31, 2019 12:37:03 PM

You’ve heard us talking about design in the embedded realm before, and if you know anything about the team at Crank Software, you know that this is something we feel passionate about. Here’s a simple example of the power of design.

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3 min read

How to build your next smartwatch UIs - without killing your battery.

By Alecia O'Brien on Jul 25, 2019 11:08:37 AM

NXP's i.MX 7ULP and Crank Storyboard UIs – a winning combination for 3D graphics processing on small battery-operated devices.

When I went looking for a forgotten smart watch charger while camping this past weekend, I cursed at the manufacturers who hadn't met my power needs. Yes, my girls were all over my watch playing with the graphics, but the fact my battery died hours before the sun went down was beyond frustrating.

For this reason, giving consumers a brilliant, touch screen experience that doesn't have a battery-sucking trade off is the goal of engineers globally.

Consider this: the present battery technology road map has a 2x capacity improvement every decade, while the power demand will probably increase at the rate of 2x every 18 months or so. This stat reinforces the need to continually innovate power solutions for small battery-operated devices. 

Our partner NXP went to work on this several years ago and appear to have solved this challenge with the launch of the i.MX 7ULP - the lowest power consuming GPU enabled microprocessor on the market. It runs a rich OS, but operates at MCU level low-power all while having both a 2D and 3D GPU on board, which means future smart devices like the smart watch I want for Christmas is going to have an incredibly long battery life, while having ALL the features and fancy 3D and 2D graphics I didn't even know were possible.

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3 min read

Develop lean and high-performance embedded UIs for MCU platforms with Storyboard Lite

By Jennie on Jul 4, 2019 7:14:41 AM

Don't carry more than you need. It's a rule that applies to many things.

I once bought my daughter one of those gigantic packages of crayons that contain over 200 colors and 33 shades of blue. She only used 12 of the colors but still had to carry that big package in her little backpack to school every day. She complained that it took up too much space in her bag and that it was so heavy it slowed her down. It was more than she needed.

Having more than you need is also a hindrance in embedded software development. Mass market products are built with cost in mind, which means teams are building applications for hardware platforms that are lean on memory and resources. These applications have to be able to fit AND perform well, making optimization and fine-tuning critical to success. You can't deploy more than you need. You have to choose which of the 33 shades of blue you need.

In our recent Storyboard 6.0 release, we launched Storyboard Lite, an exciting new configuration of our widely-adopted embedded UI development tool. Storyboard Lite helps teams build applications that are tailor-made for their hardware platforms, especially for small resource-constrained targets where every kilobyte matters. It's lean enough to deliver fast and efficient applications, but with the same collaborative workflow and ease-of-use that developers are familiar within Storyboard.

Listen to what Thomas Fletcher, Crank's VP of R&D, had to say about Storyboard Lite and other supporting functionality at Embedded World 2019.

 

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3 min read

See how your dynamic screen content will behave at runtime while you design

By Mike Marchand on Jun 18, 2019 11:33:53 AM

When you run an embedded application, screens are dynamic and change in response to data and animations. However, you can't see those dynamics during design time, so you're left with blank screens until you simulate or test the application on a device. If you've ever had to work with content that you could not see by default during the design process, you probably had to make that content visible while working with it, and then return it to its invisible state when finished. This workaround is cumbersome and prone to user error.

In this post, we’ll tackle the challenge of designing content that reacts to changes at runtime, the problem with the traditional workflow, and a better way to visualize content throughout its modalities.

Challenges with working with dynamic content at design time

Traditionally, this has been the workflow:

  1. Toggle the visibility of the layer (and all those that are obscuring it)
  2. Work with the content on the layer to make desired changes
  3. Restore the visibility of all the changed layers

This workaround is error-prone because all it takes is forgetting to restore the visibility of a single element to leave things in a bad state. Also, it's tedious and time-consuming because these additional steps aren't providing any additional feedback to the developer when they restore the layers.

Check out the following video to learn about a better solution to working with dynamic content and making it faster and easier to build up your GUI screens.

 

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2 min read

Crank Software releases Storyboard 6.0 to help deliver impressive customer experiences on smaller embedded devices

By Jennie on Jun 3, 2019 12:02:33 PM

 

 

If you're creating applications for MCU platforms and constantly challenged to reduce your costs without compromising performance, then we know you’re going to be excited about the capabilities we've added in Storyboard 6.0

The following video gives a quick overview of the performance-enhancing features we’ve added to our release that make building remarkable applications of all sizes an achievable reality.

 

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3 min read

The making of a rebrand: the evolution of Crank Software

By Jennie on May 23, 2019 2:43:17 PM

If you visited our website over the past month, you might have noticed that we look a bit different. Actually, we look a lot different. Like, burn the internet down and start over different. We overhauled our website from top to bottom, from both a content and an aesthetic perspective. In our website tear down, we took stock of the what we wanted to keep and update, what content required a refresh, and which pages no longer sparked joy. Yes, we Marie Kondo'd* cranksoftware.com, and we are now overflowing with all of the joy, and none of the clutter.

Speaking of joy, check out the happy faces in our awesome new video that we created to provide a quick answer to "Who is Crank Software and what is Storyboard?"

A revolution in embedded GUI design and development (video)

 

 

 

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2 min read

Crank Software launches a new brand identity to power up UIs for embedded device manufacturers

By Jason Clarke on May 21, 2019 9:47:29 AM

Ottawa, Canada - Monday, May 20, 2019 - Crank Software, an innovator in embedded user interface (UI) software and solutions, announced today the launch of a new brand identity. The move reinforces the company’s position as a dominant market leader in the embedded UI industry with a unique value proposition: to deliver brilliant touch screen experiences on an accelerated schedule, yet with a fraction of the resources typically required.

In Q1 of 2019, the company announced it had closed its highest quarter to date, on top of having seen an increase in 50% revenue growth the year prior. With an increasing number of Fortune 500 companies such as GE Appliances and Coca Cola taking their products to market with Storyboard-created UIs, Crank Software is enabling embedded device manufacturers to deliver immersive, digital displays at an unprecedented rate.

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1 min read

Webinar: How to design rich UIs on resource-constrained platforms (feat. NXP i.MX RT1060)

By Alecia O'Brien on May 8, 2019 9:05:00 AM

NXP and Crank Software are teaming up again for the second webinar in our 2-part series on embedded UI development for the industry's first crossover processor series - the i.MX RT Series.

How to build your next supercharged embedded UI on the i.MX RT1060 (live demo)

  • Thursday, May 23
  • 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM EDT
  • Hosted by NXP and Crank Software
  • Register here

Crank's upcoming release (ssssh!!) features Storyboard Lite, which has been designed specifically to support the convergence of low-power applications processors and high-performance microcontrollers, such as the RT Series. A memory footprint reduced version of Storyboard, Storyboard Lite enables the creation of highly responsive GUIs on resource-constrained (memory and flash limited) embedded target hardware platforms.

If you're looking to embrace growing consumer demand for enhanced user experience in smart, yet secure high-performance products, and support next generation IoT applications, then this webinar demonstration should definitely be on your calendar!

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3 min read

The need for screen: Innovation in embedded GUI development

By Jason Clarke on May 6, 2019 11:39:05 AM

Back in 2000 when LG introduced the world’s first Internet-enabled fridge, it came with an electronic pen, data memo, video messaging, and scheduler, all made accessible through an LCD “information window”.

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1 min read

Webinar: How to optimize your embedded UI for mass production

By Jason Clarke on Apr 9, 2019 8:15:00 AM

In the graphics world, much attention is always paid to the biggest and fastest Microprocessor (MPU) and Graphics Processor (GPU), but this is not always where the innovation is happening. Since Crank Storyboard is providing UI solutions on both Microcontrollers (MCU) and MPUs we have been seeing some of the fastest movement and excitement is on the new class of ARM M7 MCUs. NXP is one of the leaders in this area with their i.MX RT line of M7 MCUs that they are calling the “Crossover Processor”.

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1 min read

Video: ST and Crank Software partner for the STM32MP1

By Jason Clarke on Mar 8, 2019 1:51:34 PM

Crank was honored to showcase Storyboard's capabilities for STM32 platforms in the ST booth at Embedded World in Germany. For those of you who weren't able to join us, check out this video filmed at the show for a front row seat to all the excitement surrounding ST's new STM32MP1 microprocessor.

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1 min read

Fast embedded GUI development for the STM32MP1 Microprocessor

By Jennie on Feb 25, 2019 12:28:00 PM

Crank is excited about the recent release of the STM32MP1 microprocessor. The STM32MP1 series aligns with Crank's impressive scalability which gives Storyboard customers the flexibility to create stunning user interfaces for STM32 product lines with Chrom-ART acceleration scaling up to the MP1 series leveraging OpenGL ES rendering. This range of support makes it easier for GUI design and development teams to create innovative applications that scale markets and hardware.

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3 min read

See the latest in embedded GUI design at Embedded World

By Jennie on Feb 19, 2019 4:53:59 PM

With the abundance of innovative technologies for embedded product development on display, Embedded World is one of our favorite events of the year, and we are prepping for a busy and exciting show.

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2 min read

Crank Software embedded GUI development at CES

By Jennie on Jan 3, 2019 10:34:24 AM

With the holiday season now in our rearview mirror, it's time for what many technology lovers consider the most wonderful time of the year. That's right, it's time to get your geek on at CES, the Consumer Electronics Show, in Vegas! And speaking of geeks, we are sending a couple of Crank's finest.

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3 min read

Reimagining embedded UI design at the smart kitchen summit

By Jennie on Nov 8, 2018 11:28:00 AM

***I asked Nick Deeble, our enterprising sales manager, to pass along his thoughts and musings regarding his recent attendance at the Smart Kitchen Summit. Rarely short on words, Nick had the opportunity to talk with a lot of attendees about their challenges with developing UIs for appliances.***

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2 min read

Visit Crank Software at the American Medical Device Summit

By Jennie on Oct 23, 2018 8:54:00 AM

Delivering high-quality design and development is important for any application, but it is especially critical when creating applications for specialized targets like medical devices. User experience should be a primary focus with the UI being easy to use and intuitive for the intended audience. As an engineer, you are already challenged with ensuring that the application is fast, secure, and able to communicate with a number of sensors and the underlying hardware. If you're lucky, you might be working with a talented UI designer who understands the sensitive nature of the design and is able to create a beautiful and user-friendly medical interface. In an ideal world, the designer could completely own the look and feel of the UI while you work your code magic in parallel. You could review and iterate the application, collaborating to deliver a solution that doesn't compromise on design, functionality, or performance. What a time to be alive!

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2 min read

Baking up hot embedded UIs at the Smart Kitchen Summit

By Jennie on Oct 2, 2018 2:14:23 PM

The annual Smart Kitchen Summit (SKS) is a must-attend event for those interested in the innovations within the food technology, cooking, and kitchen space. We were fortunate to attend the inaugural European event in Dublin this past June, and are pleased to sponsor and attend the North American event in Seattle, WA, October 8-9, 2018.

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2 min read

Developing beautiful embedded UI graphics for the NXP i.MX RT1060

By Jennie on Sep 6, 2018 2:10:00 PM

*** This post was written in collaboration with Garry, our delightful UK Field Application Engineer. Garry visited the new Crank headquarters this week and, being a team player, he grabbed a baseball glove and helped the Crank softball team (nearly) win a game in the local high-tech league! ***

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2 min read

Developing rich embedded GUIs for Boundary Devices Nitrogen platforms

By Jennie on Aug 8, 2018 10:03:00 AM

Boundary Devices has an array of Single Board Computers (SBC) that leverage NXP i.MX applications processors for developing rich, high-performance embedded products.

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1 min read

Developing brilliant embedded UIs for the i.MX RT1050

By Jennie on Aug 2, 2018 3:50:00 PM

Late last year, NXP announced the i.MX RT Series, a crossover processor that is optimized for low power and high performance. Built for efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and lower power usage, the i.MX RT Series doesn't compromise on what's important to end users; high-performance, usability, advanced multimedia, and impressive graphics. This series fills a gap and hits a sweet spot that offers the best of both the MCU and application processor worlds to provide an excellent platform option for medical device user interfaces, IoT, building/home automation, and smart appliance applications.

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2 min read

Crank Software is moving!

By Jennie on Jul 19, 2018 12:31:03 PM

It was inevitable. Eventually, just about every successful company has to take the leap and uproot and move its office. For a growing company like ours, moving to a bigger office space is almost a rite of passage and is a commitment to our employees, partners, and customers that Crank's story is evolving and our future is bright. Our new office has space for us to double in size, and we plan to make full use of that.

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3 min read

The latest in embedded GUI development with Storyboard 5.3

By Thomas Fletcher on Jul 9, 2018 12:58:00 PM


Here at Crank, we update and release Storyboard on a regular cadence. We generally have a major feature release followed by a maintenance/refinement release. This release strategy helps us balance the need to deliver new functionality with ensuring we get a chance to refine usability and reduce technical debt as the product evolves.

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1 min read

Visit us at NXP Connects Santa Clara

By Jennie on Jun 12, 2018 3:53:00 PM

Crank Software is proud to be a sponsor at NXP Connects Santa Clara, June 13-14. With a wide range of technical sessions, hands-on labs, and networking opportunities, NXP Connects provides a great opportunity to learn about the latest innovations in IoT solutions, automotive technologies, and more.

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1 min read

Creating innovative user experiences for VxWorks platforms

By Jennie on Jun 8, 2018 9:02:00 AM

Powering billions of intelligent products, Wind River VxWorks has long been a trusted real-time operating system (RTOS) for deploying embedded products and systems. With wide processor support, broad connectivity, and proven real-time performance and reliability, we are excited that VxWorks is a supported platform for bringing world-class Storyboard applications to market.

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3 min read

Why bad UI design happens to good people

By Jennie on May 24, 2018 3:31:00 PM

Today's guest blog post is by one of our UI designers, Ahren. Ahren recently experienced a world of frustration trying to use a self-checkout kiosk. What should be a simple interaction turned out to be unnecessarily frustrating due to some small, but major, problems. So I asked him to write about it.

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1 min read

Tutorial : Defining and Testing UI Communication

By Jennie on May 23, 2018 2:45:00 PM

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1 min read

Crank Software earns John Deere Supplier Innovation award

By Jennie on May 14, 2018 1:18:00 PM

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3 min read

Embrace design change with UI resizing and rebranding

By Jennie on Mar 29, 2018 10:15:00 AM

The following is a post from Fancy Dan, one of our creative and talented in-house designers. Dan uses Storyboard Suite on a daily basis to create awesome user experiences for embedded applications. He's also the dulcet voice behind our Storyboard videos.

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2 min read

Innovation in HMI at Embedded World

By Jennie on Mar 14, 2018 9:30:00 AM

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3 min read

Visit Crank Software at Embedded World 2018

By Jennie on Feb 21, 2018 3:11:41 PM

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2 min read

Kickstart embedded UI development with Photoshop artboards

By Jennie on Feb 1, 2018 3:33:00 PM

The following is a post from Fancy Dan, one of our creative and talented in-house designers. Dan uses Storyboard Suite on a daily basis to create awesome user experiences for embedded applications. He also test-drives all of our new features, like this one!

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2 min read

On-demand webinar: Creating stunning UIs for MCUs

By Jennie on Jan 30, 2018 11:25:00 AM

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2 min read

Get started with embedded UI development

By Jennie on Dec 28, 2017 10:00:00 AM

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1 min read

Developing embedded applications for uClinux platforms

By Jennie on Dec 7, 2017 10:00:00 AM

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2 min read

Meet Crank Software at the Embedded Systems Conference

By Jennie on Nov 8, 2017 8:00:00 AM

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2 min read

Bringing Sketch designs to Storyboard

By Jennie on Nov 7, 2017 9:00:00 AM

We talk a lot about removing barriers to embedded development for Graphic Designers, keeping them engaged and supported throughout the lifecycle, and enabling them to work in popular 2D and 3D design tools. Adobe Photoshop has been the most popular in the design toolkit, so we've worked hard to ensure that designers could leverage the best of Photoshop when creating artwork for import into Storyboard. Because of this, importing PSDs into Storyboard is a quick and easy way to create applications.

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1 min read

Crank Storyboard applications on the NXP i.MX RT 1050

By Jennie on Nov 1, 2017 2:34:50 PM

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4 min read

Creating a medical HMI with Storyboard

By Jennie on Sep 29, 2017 2:15:00 PM

The following is a post from Nik, our awesomely bearded and multi-talented Field Application Engineer. Nik recently attended the Microchip MASTERs event in Phoenix, Arizona, and describes the making of the medical demo that we brought to the show.

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3 min read

Storyboard accelerates UI performance on the Renesas RZ/A1

By Jennie on Sep 18, 2017 1:29:28 PM

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1 min read

Try it now! Storyboard demo image for the Renesas RZA1

By Jennie on Aug 31, 2017 3:30:00 PM

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2 min read

Build better embedded UIs. Meet the new Storyboard 5.1.

By Jennie on Aug 16, 2017 12:00:00 PM

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1 min read

See us at Microchip MASTERs in Phoenix

By Jennie on Aug 14, 2017 9:30:00 AM

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1 min read

Try it now! Storyboard demo image for Microchip SAMA5D4

By Jennie on Aug 11, 2017 10:10:00 AM

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1 min read

Try it now: BeagleBone Black demo image

By Jennie on Aug 2, 2017 3:30:00 PM

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7 min read

The future of UI design for embedded systems

By Jason Clarke on Jul 20, 2017 1:00:00 PM

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4 min read

The perks of UI design and development in Storyboard

By Jason Clarke on Jul 14, 2017 11:45:00 AM

The following is a post from Vanessa, one of our multi-talented and insanely busy in-house Storyboard application developers. Vanessa uses Storyboard Engine, Storyboard IO, Adobe Photoshop, and many other tools to bring custom UI applications to life for many of our major customers.

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4 min read

Supporting embedded GUI scalability: From MCU to 3D MPU

By Jason Clarke on Jul 6, 2017 4:04:00 PM

We are often asked the question, “what platforms do you support?” or variations on the same that include operating systems, GPUs, rendering technologies, and more. Development teams want to know if Storyboard supports the environments they have, or want to build out.

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2 min read

Thanks NXPconnects!

By Jason Clarke on Jun 26, 2017 1:00:00 PM

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3 min read

Thanks TU Detroit!

By Jason Clarke on Jun 13, 2017 4:30:00 PM

At any given moment last week, the more than 3000 attendees at TU Detroit were talking about autonomous vehicles, safety, and cybersecurity, while in our booth, we spoke to many automotive design and development leaders who wanted to bring it all together within rich, engaging HMIs.

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2 min read

See us at NXP FTF Connects in San Jose

By Jason Clarke on Jun 7, 2017 3:07:25 PM

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1 min read

Visit us at TU-Automotive Detroit next week

By Jason Clarke on May 31, 2017 4:00:00 PM

TU-Automotive Detroit is only a week away (June 7-8, in Novi, MI), and we're busy finalizing, flashing, and packing some really cool demos for you to see. To witness the latest in automotive HMI development, including the only platform that lets designers and developers work side-by-side, drop by booth C240 for a chat.

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2 min read

Webinar: A better way to build UIs with Embedded Artists

By Jason Clarke on May 24, 2017 11:45:00 AM

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8 min read

Crank Storyboard vs. Qt: Which software is better for embedded GUI design and development? PART 2

By Jason Clarke on May 15, 2017 1:15:00 PM

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6 min read

5 capabilities that entrench embedded UI designers

By Jennie on May 8, 2017 10:30:00 AM

The following is a post from Fancy Dan, one of our creative and talented in-house designers. Dan uses Storyboard Suite on a daily basis to create awesome user experiences for embedded applications. I asked him to share the top 5 features that make his job easier and his designs awesome.

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12 min read

Crank Storyboard vs. Qt: Which software is better for embedded GUI design and development?

By Jason Clarke on May 1, 2017 9:30:00 AM

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1 min read

See scalable Storyboard UI demos on the Microchip SAMA5D2

By Jennie on Apr 19, 2017 9:45:00 AM

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2 min read

Webinar: Bringing UIs to life with Crank + Toradex

By Jason Clarke on Apr 6, 2017 9:45:00 AM

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1 min read

Try it now: NXP i.MX 6ULL demo image

By Jason Clarke on Apr 3, 2017 1:35:00 PM

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4 min read

What's in the Crank Booth? Embedded World 2017

By Jennie on Mar 23, 2017 9:57:43 AM

 

Crank Software Inc - Team at Embedded World 2017
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3 min read

Advancing Embedded UI Development with Storyboard 5.0

By Jennie on Mar 14, 2017 1:55:45 PM

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3 min read

Meet the New Storyboard Suite at Embedded World 2017

By Jennie on Mar 8, 2017 8:22:07 AM

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3 min read

Crank Storyboard Automotive HMI design for NXP at CES

By Jennie on Jan 24, 2017 1:50:48 PM

Whether it's commuting to and from work, chauffeuring the kids to hockey*, or running errands, we spend countless hours driving on a daily basis. Fortunately for those of us who feel like we live part-time in our cars, technology is evolving at a rapid rate to enhance the driving experience and to allow us to connect with our vehicles more seamlessly and safely.

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1 min read

See User Interface demos on your Hardware with Storyboard Demo Images

By Jennie on Dec 28, 2016 11:41:24 AM

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3 min read

Adding 3D to UIs: Importing FBX models into Storyboard

By Jennie on Oct 6, 2016 2:40:03 PM

3D elements add movement, dimension, and life to embedded applications. Aesthetics aside, they also enhance user experience and improve findability of information with a visual perspective that 2D graphics lack. As processors and GPUs evolve, embedded applications are becoming richer and 3D content more prevalent.

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2 min read

Build GUIs your Customers Want to Touch

By Jennie on Jul 13, 2016 4:51:42 PM

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3 min read

Experience Storyboard GUI Demos at NXP FTF Tech Forum

By Jennie on May 10, 2016 2:47:43 PM

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1 min read

Storyboard Suite HMI Demos at Car HMI USA 2016

By Jennie on Apr 21, 2016 12:38:42 PM

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1 min read

HMI Design with Storyboard Suite for Renesas RZ/G Series

By Jennie on Apr 20, 2016 3:35:45 PM

 

We create a lot of demo applications to show the scalability of embedded GUIs designed and developed with Storyboard Suite.

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2 min read

Webinars: Storyboard Suite for Embedded GUI Development

By Jennie on Apr 18, 2016 8:30:37 AM

We've always worked hard to deliver videos that showcase Storyboard Suite features, teach tips & tricks, and provide a more in-depth look at technical functionality. Video gives us an opportunity to visually showcase Storyboard, rather than just talk about it. If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth a million? My math might be a bit off, so don't quote me on that.

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4 min read

Crank Software at Embedded World 2016 - Day 1

By Jennie on Feb 23, 2016 6:06:14 PM

Hello from Nuremberg, Germany!

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3 min read

Storyboard Suite embedded GUI demos at Embedded World

By Jennie on Feb 4, 2016 7:00:05 AM

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4 min read

Storyboard Suite HMI Round-up from CES 2016

By Jennie on Jan 18, 2016 10:44:01 AM

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2 min read

Storyboard Suite GUIs at CES 2016

By Jennie on Dec 30, 2015 9:00:53 AM

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2 min read

Using Storyboard IO to connect the Storyboard GUI to a Device

By Jennie on Dec 15, 2015 7:00:06 AM

***Updated with new Storyboard IO feature video and tutorial below***

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2 min read

Webinar: Better GUI Design with Storyboard Suite 4.x

By Jennie on Oct 16, 2015 4:48:49 PM

***Now available On-Demand!***

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2 min read

Supporting Collaborative GUI Design with Storyboard Suite

By Jennie on Sep 29, 2015 1:34:29 PM

Embedded application projects usually involve a team of people, rather than a solitary jack-of-all-trades super designer* seeing an entire project through to completion. With traditional linear methodologies taking a backseat to more agile and lean models, features and functionality are often developed in parallel, rather than in an assembly line fashion. While having a team of designers and developers has many advantages, including making it easier to hit tight deadlines, having multiple hands in the files introduces technical complexities.

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1 min read

Free Storyboard Suite licenses for GUI Design for students

By Jennie on Sep 18, 2015 2:48:03 PM

Here at Crank, we dream of a universe full of awesome application GUIs. Where students - brimming with innovative ideas and bursting with creativity - aren't limited by lackluster software tools. We want all designers, regardless of where they are in their careers, to have the best tools possible to help them bring their ideas to life.

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2 min read

Creating GUIs for the Connected Home with Storyboard Suite and Freescale

By Jennie on Jul 30, 2015 2:39:13 PM

This past Spring Crank Software participated in a project with Freescale (and other fine Freescale partners) to deliver the ultimate connected home experience at Freescale Technology Forum (FTF) 2015.

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1 min read

Storyboard Suite Embedded Application GUIs at FTF 2015

By Jennie on Jul 7, 2015 2:28:37 PM

While we were at Freescale Technology 2015, we shared several photos of the various Storyboard Suite embedded application GUI demos. We also posted a (very) quick look at an IoT demo designed with Storyboard Suite for a connected home.

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2 min read

Storyboard Suite 4.1. Built by GUI Designers-for GUI Designers

By Jennie on Jul 3, 2015 10:16:15 AM

Earlier this year we announced the release of Storyboard Suite 4.0, giving embedded GUI design and development teams an easier and faster way to get their applications to market. 4.0 focused heavily on streamlining the design experience and supporting collaborative team development, with enhancements like multiple application design file support, model comparison and merge streamlining, support for 9-patch images, Lua Editor updates to increase productivity and make debugging easier, support for scrolling layers and circles and arc render extensions, and more!

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2 min read

From FTF 2015: Storyboard Suite IoT GUI Demos

By Jennie on Jun 24, 2015 4:01:29 PM

Hello from Austin!

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2 min read

Embedded GUI Demos and Sessions at FTF

By Jennie on Jun 17, 2015 1:43:23 PM

FTF (Freescale Technology Forum) 2015 is next week in Austin, Texas, June 22-25, and we are gearing up for another awesome show. We will be busy this year with presenting a lecture and running a hands-on lab, as well as demoing GUIs and Storyboard Suite at the exhibition. If you are going to the show, here's what you can expect to see:

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2 min read

Storyboard Suite for Innovative Home Automation GUIs

By Jennie on Jun 8, 2015 5:30:45 AM

Home automation provides a convenient way to control home appliances and systems. Making life easier for homeowners, it also saves energy by programming devices and systems to operate within certain requirements. Controls for home automation can be as simple as dimming lights via a remote or as feature-rich as a network of home systems programmed with a main controller or mobile device.

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2 min read

HMI demos and Storyboard Suite at TU-Automotive Detroit 2015

By Jennie on May 27, 2015 4:19:21 PM

TU-Automotive Detroit is just around the corner, June 3-4 in Novi, Michigan, so we are getting the Storyboard Suite demos ready to hit the road. This is a great automotive show to check out the latest in connected car technology, autonomous driving, safety & security, mobility, and more!

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1 min read

GUI Design with Storyboard Suite for the Renesas RZ/A1

By Jennie on May 22, 2015 10:16:44 AM

It's Demo Friday! Ok, that's probably not a thing but it is Friday and we've got a new demo for you. Today's demo further showcases the scalability of GUI design with Storyboard Suite.

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2 min read

Crank at Automotive Cockpit HMI USA 2015

By Jennie on May 14, 2015 10:56:59 PM

It's nearly mid-May which means a couple of things:

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1 min read

GUI Design is Rapid and Scalable with Crank Storyboard Suite

By Jennie on Mar 30, 2015 2:47:56 PM

As we create multi-market demo applications here at Crank, we like to deploy them across multiple hardware platforms to fully test their look and feel. This helps us ensure that the GUI design we've created performs and looks as intended, and it also helps us validate the scalability of Storyboard Suite across different platforms.

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2 min read

3 GUI Design Changes Affecting Process and End Product

By Jennie on Mar 22, 2015 10:25:57 PM

GUI design is changing, both the process and the end product a customer interacts with on a device. This is in response to a changing market. Screens are everywhere. Refrigerators and laundry machines have interactive displays. Home automation systems are becoming more mainstream.  Our cars have technologically advanced infotainment systems and clusters that rival my 80's dreams of the future KITT car.  The prevalence of screens has created a shift in how user interfaces are created.

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1 min read

Crank GUI software is everywhere at Embedded World 2015

By Jennie on Feb 26, 2015 4:49:15 AM

Day 2 kept us busy in the booth with a lot of people coming to check out the GUI software demos on our partner's hardware and Storyboard Suite demos.

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2 min read

Embedded World Day 1 - The GUI of Things

By Jennie on Feb 25, 2015 4:16:01 AM

Just a quick update from Day 1 at Embedded World 2015 - more of a photo blog today. Pictures are more fun anyway. (As the Crank writer, it pains me to write that.)

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2 min read

Storyboard Suite UI demos at embedded world 2015

By Jennie on Feb 10, 2015 3:02:54 PM

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1 min read

Storyboard driving TI's ADAS Cluster on Jacinto 6

By Jason Clarke on Jan 28, 2015 3:43:30 PM

If you were at TI Village at CES this year you might have seen the digital automotive cockpit demo featuring Storyboard Suite. If not, be sure to check out this quick video from Texas Instruments. This innovative demo showcases an automotive cluster and HUD featuring UIs built with Storyboard and driven by TI's Jacinto 6 processor.

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2 min read

9-patch allows creation of graphic images with scalability

By Jennie on Jan 22, 2015 3:49:36 PM

Application design usually means working with an abundance of graphics, and when designing applications for multiple screen sizes, designers have to keep in mind how those images will scale when deployed across different resolutions and aspect ratios. A button that looks great on one screen might have awkward corners or warped text when scaled to fit a screen of a different size. To avoid this, designers often create multiple versions of their graphics in various sizes. While this allows for tight control over the visual presentation of the graphics, it also means extra time, effort, and resources.

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1 min read

Crank Storyboard Suite application demo on STM32F429 MCU

By Jennie on Jan 8, 2015 12:43:59 PM

Lately we've been busy crankin' out demo videos to show off Storyboard Suite on a variety of MCUs/MPUs and Operating Systems. The tool to design and develop the UIs behind these embedded application demos--Storyboard Suite--stay the same, but the variety of hardware used for deployment speaks to the reach of our supported targets.

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2 min read

Spot the Storyboard Suite UIs at CES

By Jennie on Dec 24, 2014 10:12:43 AM

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2 min read

Storyboard Suite + JSON deliver rich data to embedded UIs

By Jamie Villeneuve on Dec 15, 2014 11:27:24 AM

Communicating between a Storyboard application and external sources is straightforward and flexible. Storyboard provides a number of connectivity options ranging from its native SBIO API for system engineers, to JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) for more web-centric programmers.

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1 min read

Mississippi State University chooses Storyboard to deliver award-winning in-car HMI

By Jennie on Nov 26, 2014 11:21:19 AM

When we learned that Mississippi State University (MSU) was evaluating Storyboard Suite to design and develop a fully integrated center stack in the EcoCAR 2 competition, we were thrilled to support them in such an exciting and innovative project. The EcoCAR series is a Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition that provides university students hands-on experience with completely overhauling a vehicle to reduce its environmental impact, while retaining or enhancing its functionality and performance. As part of the challenge, the rising stars behind tomorrow's technologically savvy vehicles were also tasked with developing a new media-rich center stack unit. In-car Human Machine Interfaces (HMIs) are becoming increasing common and evolving rapidly, both from a technology and design standpoint. The best HMIs enhance, not disrupt, driver experience and are intuitive and attractive from a design standpoint. It was exciting for Crank to see MSU tackle this challenge with enthusiasm and a keen design eye, and to be part of the future of in-car HMI design.

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2 min read

Storyboard Suite for GUI design

By Jennie on Nov 10, 2014 4:27:32 PM

Here at Crank we spend countless hours developing new features for GUI designers, making new demos and tutorials to educate users, and working with customers to deliver custom services and support. Because we live and breathe our own tools on a daily basis, it gives us pause when someone asks us, "What IS Storyboard anyway?" We've created mounds of content showcasing Storyboard features and demos of them in action, but perhaps we need to pull out of the weeds a bit to give a high level view of what Storyboard is, who it benefits, and why you should get it for everyone on your gift list this year.

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1 min read

Jade IdeaBoxx by featuring Crank: Fast-tracking GUI design

By Jennie on Nov 5, 2014 4:14:02 PM

Imagine you're a designer of graphical interfaces (GUIs) for embedded devices. If you are reading this blog, you likely resemble this. Now, picture receiving a box that contains everything you need to realize the dream of getting a functioning prototype of your designs up and running in minutes--on a real device, not your desktop. Pretty awesome picture, right?

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1 min read

Storyboard for IoT: A tool for everyone in your organization

By Jennie on Oct 29, 2014 10:46:45 AM

In most companies, a developer's time and skill is in high demand, and when we are prototyping UIs for embedded devices we don't always want to engage a developer's deep technical expertise. Unfortunately though, many UI development tools require a high level of technical prowess, leaving designers and marketers reliant on a developer's schedule and skill set.

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1 min read

Crank Storyboard GUI on the Atmel SAMA5D4

By Jennie on Oct 1, 2014 7:16:41 PM

We've been working on some demos lately to showcase the versatility in the type of applications you can build with Crank Storyboard Suite. You've probably seen applications built with Storyboard for Automotive and you know that you can use Storyboard to build application GUIs for Industrial and Medical.

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1 min read

Crank and Renesas partner to deliver better HMI development

By Jennie on Oct 1, 2014 5:31:05 PM

Crank Software and Renesas Electronics America announced today a collaboration to deliver an enhanced experience for HMI application development on Linux. Crank Storyboard Suite provides developers of user interfaces for embedded devices the tools to design, develop, and deploy applications with speed and ease, and Renesas provides the high-speed, high-performance RZ/A microprocessor for the target hardware. Together, Crank and Renesas deliver an impressive solution for efficiently developing fast, beautiful HMI-based applications for Linux systems. Check out the demo to see multiple applications built with Storyboard and deployed to the Renesas RZ/A. If you happen to find yourself at ARM TechCon 2014 from October 1-3, visit the Renesas booth (1114) to learn more about Crank Storyboard™ Suite technology running on the Renesas RZ/A. 

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7 min read

Storyboard Tutorial: Creating User Interface Table Variables

By Sarah Collie on Sep 24, 2014 3:59:36 PM

Updated on February 18, 2020
Sometimes the best way to display data in Storyboard is with tables and table variables. Tables, as well as cells within the table, are able to contain several render extensions, aka user interface table variables. This allows them to behave dynamically and perform a wide variety of tasks. 

Getting started with user interface table variables

Before getting started, download the example that we've started for you and import it into Storyboard. You should see something that looks like this:

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4 min read

Storyboard - Adding Tables to your Application User Interface (UI)

By jwarren on Sep 12, 2014 2:44:22 PM

Today, we are going back to basics in this Storyboard user interface (UI) tutorial. Table basics. Tables are a special control in Storyboard. While most controls are individual, tables are more like containers that organize several controls inside them. This tutorial will walk you through how to create a very simple table, add background colour, adjust basic settings, and add render extensions. Before we get started building our table, create a new application in Storyboard Designer.

Add a background colour for the application's UI

First we're going to add a background to our application.

  1. Right-click on Screen1
  2. Select Add
  3. Select Control
  4. Give your new control a name
  5. In the Render Extensions list, select Fill
  6. Select Finish

You will be asked to select a colour for your background. For the purposes of this tutorial, let's select white.

 
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1 min read

Tips for importing Photoshop PSD files to Crank Storyboard

By Jennie on Aug 1, 2014 1:42:40 PM

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2 min read

From Photoshop PSD to iOS application

By Jennie on Jul 7, 2014 2:52:35 PM

The best tool for any job is the one that allows you to work most efficiently and effectively, and when it comes to creating stunning graphics and interfaces, Photoshop is the design tool of choice for many user interface (UI) designers.

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1 min read

Automotive UI Development using Storyboard Suite at Car HMi 2014

By Jennie on Jun 20, 2014 3:12:52 PM


Cars driving by themselves. In-car gaming and entertainment while avoiding distraction. Voice recognition to allow us to have conversations with our cars about route navigation and weather. Mobile device integration with car systems.

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2 min read

Storyboard Suite showcased at event on UI for Automotive

By Jennie on Jun 4, 2014 1:02:27 PM

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2 min read

Start your Embedded Engine with Storyboard Suite 3.2.1

By Jennie on Jun 2, 2014 9:55:22 AM

Our Storyboard Suite 3.2 release last year was packed full of new features for the design, embedded engine and browser. Now that it has been "in the wild" for 6 months and customers have been using it to create user interfaces (UI) for their embedded applications, we've been getting great feedback about which features users love, which ones could benefit from a little refinement, and which new features would be helpful to respond to embedded UI design pain points. We value the comments and questions we get from our customers, because it provides us an opportunity to make Storyboard better and to constantly fine tune the experience of building UIs for embedded applications.

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2 min read

Crank website showcases Storyboard Suite embedded GUI tool

By Jennie on May 23, 2014 2:58:22 PM

Why yes! We DID get a new look for Spring 2014. Thanks for noticing!

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2 min read

Iterative User Interface Design with Photoshop Re-Import

By Jennie on Apr 23, 2014 11:20:37 PM

“We nailed the UI design in one take!”
Said no user interface design team. Ever. Nor should they. Design takes time.

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1 min read

Crank Interview from Day 1 at Freescale Technology Forum

By Jennie on Apr 9, 2014 5:03:20 PM

Day 1 at FTF2014 was busy. Busy, but great.

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1 min read

Crank Software off to Freescale Technology Forum 2014 - April 8-11

By Jennie on Apr 1, 2014 3:22:03 PM

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1 min read

RTC Magazine Article: Speeding Time to Market for GUI Designs

By Jamie Villeneuve on Mar 17, 2014 3:32:05 PM

Crank recently contributed an article to RTC Magazine about how to reduce time requirements and improve the process of bringing an embedded UI to market.

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3 min read

Hitting up Embedded World 2014 – Crank Style

By Jennie on Feb 18, 2014 8:49:20 PM

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2 min read

Storyboard and Qt integration

By Brian Edmond on Jan 24, 2014 10:23:43 AM

Storyboard was created to be a portable and platform agnostic solution.  This allows us to give the same experience across Linux, QNX, Green Hills and so on.  We often get asked how we deal with or compete with Qt.  We see Qt as a platform abstraction layer like all of our other systems, it just happens to have an optional graphics component.

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1 min read

Storyboard Suite @ CES 2014

By Jamie Villeneuve on Jan 7, 2014 3:49:44 PM

Happy New Year!

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1 min read

Storyboard supports Green Hills INTEGRITY

By Brian Edmond on Jan 3, 2014 4:10:43 PM

Crank is always improving and expanding its support for platforms and operating systems. The most recent of these is support for Green Hills INTEGRITY. We recently had the chance to work on this port for the upcoming CES show in Las Vegas. You can check out our cluster demo in the Green Hills suite.

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1 min read

Crank Software Named Freescale Proven Partner for Making Graphical UI Development Easy with Storyboard Suite

By Jamie Villeneuve on Dec 19, 2013 11:57:09 AM

Crank Software announced today that it has been named a Proven Partner in the Freescale® Semiconductor Connect partner program. Crank Software develops Storyboard Suite, a turnkey UI development software that makes it easy for i.MX users to build graphical UIs and ultimately get their products to market faster.

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1 min read

Crank Software Releases Storyboard Suite 3.2

By Jamie Villeneuve on Nov 20, 2013 11:01:27 AM

Crank Software is excited to announce the release of Storyboard Suite 3.2 today!

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1 min read

UI Developers Can Deliver In-Browser HTML5 Content Easily With New WebKit Engine

By Jamie Villeneuve on Oct 23, 2013 3:13:50 PM

Ottawa, October 23, 2013

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Crank Software WebKit Chosen to Power Nintendo Web Framework

By Jamie Villeneuve on Oct 2, 2013 4:42:14 PM

Ottawa, On. – October 2, 2013 – Crank Software, an innovator in embedded user interface (UI) solutions, announced today that Crank Software has been selected by Nintendo to provide the WebKit technology that powers the Nintendo Web Framework. With Crank Software’s WebKit, web developers, in addition to traditional developers, can now use the Nintendo Web Framework to develop their newest games and applications on the Wii U system with the best technologies possible – including HTML5, JavaScript, and CSS. In a recent analyst briefing, Nintendo stated that there has been tremendous interest in the new Nintendo Web Framework development environment. Read More >>

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1 min read

Crank Software @ TI TECH Days Detroit, MI, September 26

By Jamie Villeneuve on Sep 23, 2013 1:50:27 PM

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1 min read

Automated Testing at Crank!

By Rodney Dowdall on Sep 17, 2013 2:58:57 PM

Here at Crank Software, we are continuously updating Storyboard in order to deliver a better experience for our customers every day. In preparation for the upcoming Storyboard 3.2 release, new features are being added all the time and the Storyboard Engine has to be tested against all our supported platforms to make sure that the latest changes don’t regress existing behaviour.

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1 min read

UI development support software accelerates the development process

By Jamie Villeneuve on Aug 22, 2013 3:00:48 PM

Embedded UI development teams often struggle with communication barriers, lack of visibility, and siloed workflows throughout the development process. This typically results in extended development timelines and overstretched budgets. However, UI development support software can help teams overcome these hurdles.

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1 min read

Time for a new UI programming paradigm

By Jamie Villeneuve on Aug 7, 2013 10:50:18 AM

WITH THE UBIQUITOUS usage of smartphones, tablets, and other mainstream screens, traditional products that once had analog displays are now being modernized with digital user interfaces (UI). From thermometers to air conditioning control panels to car dashboards, even the simplest and smallest embedded devices often feature graphical user interfaces (GUls). Therefore, manufacturers are focused on delivering quality electronic products with intuitive, easy-to-operate Uls - all without slowing down the development process.

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Exporting a Storyboard Application for iOS

By Jamie Villeneuve on Aug 6, 2013 2:42:12 PM

With Storyboard 3.0 and above, developers now have the option to export their Storyboard application to iOS. Click on the video below to see the easy steps involved with exporting to an iOS device.

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1 min read

Importing a Storyboard Project

By Jamie Villeneuve on Aug 1, 2013 3:43:19 PM

Here are a couple of easy steps to import a Storyboard Project Archive into Storyboard Designer.

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1 min read

Exporting a Storyboard Project

By Jamie Villeneuve on Jul 26, 2013 11:43:39 AM

Storyboard Designer gives you the ability to export your project for either archiving, sharing or demo purposes. Here are a couple of easy steps showing you how to do that.

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Building a Storyboard Application – Video #4 – Internationalization

By Jason Clarke on Jul 26, 2013 11:16:08 AM

Dan has kicked into high gear and has video #4 in the Building a Storyboard Application video series up and ready. This video takes users through a small example of how to use variables in Storyboard to load new languages into the application.

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1 min read

Building a Storyboard Application – Video #3 - Lua Scripting

By Jason Clarke on Jul 22, 2013 11:10:14 AM

Video #3 in our Building a Storyboard Application series is now up and does a great walk through on how you leverage Lua scripting in your application. Lua is a great scripting language for embedded applications with it's ease of use, awesome performance and ability to be extended. If you haven't used Lua before be sure to check it out.

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1 min read

Building a Storyboard Application - Video #2 - Animations

By Jason Clarke on Jul 2, 2013 2:23:53 PM

This is the second video in our "Building a Storyboard Application" series. If you missed the first video you can watch it here.

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1 min read

Telematics Update Detroit

By Jason Clarke on Jun 28, 2013 11:43:19 AM

Earlier this month Crank Software was at the Telematics Update conference in Detroit and got stopped for this quick interview :

Topics: Uncategorized
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1 min read

Popularity of JavaScript is rising

By Rodney Dowdall on Jun 11, 2013 10:50:27 AM

The Tiobe Programming Community Index rankings show that JavaScript's popularity as a programming language is on the rise. It has recently risen in to the top 10 of popular programming languages based on searches on the web. This article outlines the top 10 languages and goes over how the chart is tabulated.

Topics: Uncategorized
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3 min read

Should a proven UI be updated?

By Rodney Dowdall on Jun 2, 2013 11:56:51 PM

I was reading some articles concerning the up and coming release of Windows 8.1 and the much heralded return of the start menu button. It would appear that Microsoft has heard the complaints of it's users and now wants to backtrack on the decision to remove the button, and push that functionality back in to the next release of Windows. This got me thinking, why did they remove the button in the first place? Why did they feel this was a good decision at all?

Topics: Uncategorized
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1 min read

Flat UI design the new normal

By Rodney Dowdall on May 25, 2013 9:07:33 AM

Wired has posted an article concerning a recent shift in UI design. Most of the UI's that are designed for devices nowadays are flat. The 3D effect, shadows, and gradients that used to commonplace in most of the UI's beforehand have now disappeared for a cleaner minimalist design.

Topics: Uncategorized
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Storyboard on stage at Blackberry Live

By Jason Clarke on May 19, 2013 9:30:42 PM

Blackberry's CEO, Thorsten Heins, showed off the QNX Bentley and Storyboard during his keynote at Blackberry Live this past week.

Topics: Uncategorized
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2 min read

Storyboard RCP Stands Alone

By Rodney Dowdall on May 6, 2013 4:31:22 PM

Tasked with spearheading a new branch of Storyboard development, my objective was to shed the baggage of an IDE dependent set of plugins and move towards the development of an application born for the sole purpose of Storyboard project creation. At the same time, we wanted to migrate from the 3.x framework to the newer 4.x version, all the while using a new system to build and package (Tycho).

Topics: Uncategorized
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1 min read

On Creating a Common Layered Image Format ...

By Thomas Fletcher on May 1, 2013 12:05:27 PM

An important functionality of Storyboard Designer is our ability to decompose a Photoshop PSD file into its various layer, group, image and text components and allow users to incorporate those elements directly into their embedded user interfaces.

Topics: Uncategorized
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1 min read

FASTEST GROWING COMPANIES #6: Crank Software gears up for the automotive sector

By Jamie Villeneuve on Apr 25, 2013 10:59:56 AM

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1 min read

Storyboard: The future is friendly!

By Rodney Dowdall on Apr 24, 2013 9:56:52 PM

A quick sneak preview of what's coming up in Storyboard Designer soon...
Up until now, making any changes to your original Photoshop design and then applying those to your Storyboard application was a process which could take several hours and at least two cups of coffee. A new feature - Apply PSD - is currently in the works to help you accomplish this process in just a few minutes and reduce your caffeine intake!

Topics: Uncategorized
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1 min read

Building a Storyboard Application - Video Series

By Jason Clarke on Apr 18, 2013 10:19:52 AM

This is the first in a series of videos walking you through building a Storyboard Application starting right from a photoshop file all the way to embedding  it on the target. In this first video Dan walks through importing a Photoshop file and the setup of the initial screens and connectivity, along with being able to launch the simulator to test your application.

Topics: Uncategorized
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FreeRTOS gets Storyboard

By Brian Edmond on Apr 1, 2013 9:42:26 PM

Recently we have been working on expanding Storyboard's support for smaller RTOS platforms. The latest addition is FreeRTOS. Storyboard brings a great development environment to smaller platforms allowing customers to develop and prototype the UI on their desktops and then seamlessly deploy to an RTOS target. We have been working with our friends at FDI on an NXP LPC1788 platform. Here is a quick video showing what is possible with Storyboard on these smaller platforms.

Topics: Uncategorized
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Storyboard on the Discovery Channel

By Jamie Villeneuve on Mar 25, 2013 8:42:20 AM

Check out Storyboard in action in the QNX Bentley on the Discovery Channel.

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2 min read

Prototype FAST ... Storyboard is Lean UX

By Thomas Fletcher on Mar 19, 2013 10:46:22 AM

One site that I hit as part of my regular graphics/UI/UX reading is Smashing Magazine.  They are an invaluable resource for all aspects

Topics: Uncategorized
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2 min read

Simulink Driven Storyboard Input Simulation via Storyboard IO

By Thomas Fletcher on Mar 5, 2013 1:25:03 PM

Last week Crank was at Embedded World in Germany showing off the latest release of Storyboard Suite by showing deployed applications on a wide variety of operating system/hardware platforms:

Topics: Uncategorized
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1 min read

Embedded World Germany

By Jamie Villeneuve on Mar 4, 2013 10:50:55 AM

I never did follow up with pictures of our finished booth at Embedded World. Do I have a good reason for not doing so? What kind of wicked excuse can I come up with ... I was kidnapped by << insert something witty here>>.

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1 min read

LEGO: A Perfect User Experience

By Thomas Fletcher on Mar 4, 2013 10:23:38 AM

I came across this post in UX Magazine on LEGO as a Near-Perfect User Experience, and it totally resonated with me ... and not just because I love LEGO.

Topics: Uncategorized
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New Crank Booth at Embedded World

By Jamie Villeneuve on Feb 25, 2013 4:42:45 PM

Today was setup day at Embedded World and we finally got to see the new Crank booth live and it is looking good! All the demos arrived in one piece and setup was pretty uneventful.

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1 min read

Crankin' Embedded World Germany, February 26 - 28

By Jamie Villeneuve on Feb 20, 2013 12:34:37 PM

Crank Software will be at Embedded World Germany next week from February 26 - 28. We had so many interested attendees stop by the booth last year, that we quickly ran out of room during peak times. This year we have kicked it up a notch and now have a larger, stand-alone booth to both accommodate more prospects and to allow more room to showcase Storyboard Suite on multiple target platforms. We are extremely excited with the graphics that our Graphic Designer, a.k.a Fancy Dan, put together and can't wait to see the booth first hand. Stay tuned for some blog posts and pics live from the show floor next week.

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2 min read

Multi-Touch Gesture Plugin

By Rodney Dowdall on Feb 19, 2013 9:16:28 AM

Storyboard now has multi-touch events capable of handling all of your multi-touch needs. Featured as part of the gesture plugin, storyboard has the ability to track presses, motions, and releases, for up to 5 fingers at the same time.

Topics: Uncategorized
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2 min read

New Image Optimization Tools!

By Rodney Dowdall on Jan 28, 2013 10:21:20 PM

A quick overview of the new image optimization tools that come along with the release of Storyboard 3.0.

Topics: Uncategorized
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QNX Concept Car walk through, starring Storyboard Suite 3.0

By Jason Clarke on Jan 9, 2013 9:46:05 PM

Take a look at the first video walk through of the QNX Bently from the good people at TI. Make sure to pay close attention at the 1:15 mark when Mark Rigley from QNX gives us a nice shout out.

Topics: Uncategorized
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1 min read

Storyboard 3.0 shown in use by QNX CAR Bentley Concept HMI

By Thomas Fletcher on Jan 8, 2013 12:55:35 PM

Today the Crank team released the latest version of our embedded user interface and HMI framework Storyboard Suite: Storyboard 3.0.

Topics: Uncategorized
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International CES, Las Vegas Nevada, January 8 - 11 2013

By Jamie Villeneuve on Jan 4, 2013 9:37:47 AM

Crank Software Inc. will be on the show floor and showcasing Storyboard Suite in a large number of tier one company booths this year at CES. We would love to personally meet with you and discuss any existing or upcoming projects that you may have where Storyboard Suite would be a good fit. Send us an email and we will be in touch.

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2 min read

Storyboard now supports iOS

By Rodney Dowdall on Dec 28, 2012 2:43:50 PM

After being told I had the task of getting Storyboard to run on iOS I was excited about the opportunity to learn about the operating system and iOS app development. The process seemed simple in concept but ended up being far more complex than anticipated.

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Wunderlist 2 debuts, ditches HTML5 for native apps on Android, Windows, iOS and Mac

By Jamie Villeneuve on Dec 19, 2012 8:46:14 AM

Wunderlist is one of those apps that's beloved by productivity nerds, but not very well known outside of those circles. Part of the appeal came from its availability on almost every platform out there. To reach true OS agnosticism 6Wunderkinder, however, relied on HTML5 -- which makes porting an app easy, but comes with its own drawbacks, including lackluster performance. (Just ask Mark Zuckerberg.)

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1 min read

Segger embOS Support

By Jamie Villeneuve on Dec 18, 2012 10:40:12 AM

Crank Software will be introducing support in Storyboard Suite 3.0 for non MMU targets by offering a runtime for Segger's embOS. New and existing Crank customers will now be able to use Storyboard Suite 3.0 as a single solution to support traditional 32 bit family processors and lower level non MMU platforms.

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