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    Alecia O'Brien

    Alecia works on all things marketing and customer experience-related at Crank. With over 20 years working to help software companies elevate their brand awareness and lead generation efforts, she's laser-focused on helping more embedded engineers and UI designers fall in love with Crank Storyboard.

    Recent Posts

    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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    2 min read

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

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

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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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    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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    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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