The design and development of automated test equipment (ATE) presents a host of challenges, from initial planning through hardware and software development to final integration. At each stage of the process, changes become more difficult and costly to implement. Furthermore, because software typically follows hardware in the development cycle, many open-ended items are left for the software engineer to handle. Good planning goes a long way toward mitigating familiar risk, but it can’t prevent every problem, especially in a fast-paced test development cycle where many issues arise at final integration. The idea that the software is more malleable than hardware, results in the phrase “just fix it in software!” However, hardware and software are tightly coupled and most issues typically require updates to both. This doesn’t stop with the initial deployment, but continues for the system’s life cycle.
Ensure you’re creating a successful automated functional test system with this guide on Measurement and Hardware Abstraction Layers.
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