CriticalBlue announces support for Texas Instruments’ new TMS320C66x DSP core within Prism.

Prism will enable users to target and optimize software for TI’s C66x DSPs

San Jose, Calif. — November 9, 2010

CriticalBlue, a pioneer in embedded multicore software analysis, exploration and verification tools, announced today a development program to add support for Texas Instruments’ Incorporated (TI) new TMS320C66x digital signal processor (DSP) generation based on the KeyStone multicore architecture within CriticalBlue’s Prism product. Software developers will now be able to analyze their existing software applications and quickly assess the tangible benefits of migrating to the C66x DSP.

This announcement reinforces the deepening and broadening of CriticalBlue’s Prism capabilities with leading multicore vendors, such as TI. The activities will deliver an eco-system to TI customers which clearly demonstrates the differentiation of the C66x DSP core architecture when running customers’ own software applications on the C6678 multicore DSP and future generations.

Prism is an award winning Eclipse™-based embedded multicore programming system which allows software engineers to easily assess and realize the full potential of multicore processors without significant changes to their existing development flow. Prism analyzes the behavior of code running on hardware development boards, virtual machines, or simulators. It allows engineers to take their existing sequential code, and before making any changes, explore and analyze opportunities for concurrency. Having identified the optimal parallelization strategies in this way, developers implement parallel structures, and use Prism again to verify performance efficiency and thread-safe operations.

In addition to partitioning software onto multicore hardware, the results of this development program will be that users can quantify the benefit of software migration to the C66x DSP on a range of C66x devices. Developers can analyze data cache misses and pipeline stalls on a thread, function or source line level, resulting in an ability to see the impact of such cache misses and stalls on the overall concurrent schedule. This valuable feedback to the software programmer would otherwise be extremely difficult to visualize. Ultimately, Prism provides programmers with an estimate of the performance gain achievable by partitioning their program into multiple tasks and targeting one of the C66x DSPs.

These analyses can be done on existing unmodified software applications running on TI’s instruction set simulator. Experienced multicore software programmers will benefit from Prism’s capabilities in the area of performance tuning and general multicore code optimization.

Supporting Quotes

“Texas Instruments is the worldwide leader in DSPs and it is appropriate that the first DSP core supported by Prism is the new C66x.” said David Stewart, CEO, CriticalBlue. “Signal Processing programs are natural applications which will benefit from partitioning and load sharing amongst multiple powerful processing engines. Prism support for the C66x core will enable TI’s customers to effectively plan and efficiently implement software onto the appropriate member of the C66x DSP family.””

“By utilizing CriticalBlue’s Prism, TI’s customers are able to enhance the migration of complex DSP algorithms onto TI’s high performance multicore DSPs with unparalleled ease of use and confidence of achieving their goals,” said Frank Fruth, director of software for software engineering, multicore and media infrastructure, TI. “The ‘what-if’ capabilities available within CriticalBlue’s Prism tool are ideal for our customers to understand the benefits of using C66x devices without first having to make code changes to their applications/algorithms. As part of TI’s tools ecosystem, CriticalBlue aims to provide customers with the tools needed to ease multicore software development”

Key Points

  • This relationship helps speed development and optimization of multicore software applications and hence accelerates time to market of end products based on multicore DSPs.
  • Integration with Prism allows TI’s customers to analyze their existing single threaded application code for use in multicore C66x DSP generation.
  • Prism technology is an Eclipse plug-in and is based on dynamic tracing of the users’ software execution.
  • Developers can work in a familiar Eclipse environment using both TI’s Code ComposerTM software and CriticalBlue’s Prism development tools.
  • The C66x DSP core PSP for Prism will be available in Q1 2011.

About the Texas Instruments Developer Network

CriticalBlue is a member of the TI Developer Network, a community of respected, well-established companies offering products and services based on TI analog and digital technology. The Network provides a broad range of end-equipment solutions, embedded software, engineering services and development tools that help customers accelerate innovation to make the world smarter, healthier, safer, greener and more fun.

About CriticalBlue

CriticalBlue guides software developers through the task of migrating to and optimizing code on multicore platforms through the delivery of innovative and multicore software focused tools, training, and services. The increasing use of complex, multicore processor architectures has accelerated demand for CriticalBlue’s technology and expertise throughout all electronic industry sectors. To learn more, please visit

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