TestStand can call test code written in virtually any programming environment or language, including LabVIEW, LabVIEW NXG, LabWindows™/CVI, C/C++, and .NET and even scripting languages. However, most general-purpose programming languages are not optimized for test and measurement applications, making it difficult to write code to communicate with instruments, analyze data, and display that data in a meaningful format to engineers.
LabVIEW NXG simplifies the hardware integration for engineering applications, so you can rapidly acquire and visualize data sets from virtually any I/O device, whether by NI or a third party, using a consistent approach. Combined with a graphical programming syntax that reduces the time to visualize, create, and code engineering systems, LabVIEW, with a community of hundreds of thousands of developers, helps both programmers and non-programmers develop powerful test software.
In the Figure 3 example, a LabVIEW NXG VI (virtual instrument or program) acquires a signal from two instruments, analyzes the data, and then reports the result back to the user.
Figure 3.Graphical Programming in the LabVIEW NXG Environment, Optimized for Test and Measurement
In addition to reducing test development time through an intuitive graphical programming environment, LabVIEW improve your productivity by providing:
- Instrument connectivity through free instrument drivers to automate virtually any instrument
- Data analysis through thousands of built-in functions to analyze and present data
- User interface controls, like graphs, LEDs, knobs, and gauges, specific to test and measurement
- Higher performance by automatically taking advantage of multicore processing
NI also offers tools for developing test code in more traditional text-based languages. LabWindows/CVI is an ANSI C development environment and Measurement Studio is a plug-in to Visual Studio, adding test- and measurement-specific user interface control and analysis functions for ANSI C, .NET, and Microsoft Visual C++.
By choosing a programming language that is optimized for test and measurement applications, you can drastically improve your ROI by reducing the time and effort it takes to develop test code. To learn more, see the white paper on Choosing the Right Software Application Development Environment.