San Jose, Ca. - Zeidman Technologies, Inc. has been granted what it considers is a far-ranging patent for automatically generating source code for an operating system.
Patent number 6,934,947 for a “Visual Tool for Developing Real Time Task Management Code,” is broad patent covering aspects of software synthesis specifically related to automatically generating source code for an operating system.
Commercialized in the company’s SynthOS, the methodology the patent covers is designed to take the complexity out of writing multitasking systems by allowing a programmer to use high-level, abstract “primitives” to specify how tasks communicate with each other and share resources.
The synthesis tool extracts the primitives and inserts code to create and manipulate the appropriate operating system data structures such as semaphores, mutexes, mailboxes, and message queues. The tool also creates an optimized, custom operating system.
“I was working on a firmware project several years ago where we spent many hours debugging intermittent failures at run time. It often turned out that a programmer had forgotten to include code to set or check a mutex,” said Bob Zeidman, the inventor and president of Zeidman Technologies. “It was frustrating. When the project was over I looked for a tool to automate the code-writing process and, not finding any, invented one.”
“This will be a very important advance in embedded software development,” said Jack Grimes, former director at Taligent and advisor to Zeidman Technologies. “Software and hardware developers have been looking for ways to reduce the cost and increase the reliability of writing critical operating system functions. This is especially important for smaller embedded systems.”