TRON Project Leader's Opinion

Ken Sakamura

Interfaculty Initiative in Information Studies, The University of Tokyo

The T-Engine Forum was established on June 24 for the purpose promoting the T-Engine project to provide a standard development environment for ubiquitous computing environments. Although there were 22 firms that joined in the beginning after agreeing with the aims of the establishment, membership had increased to the point where it exceeded 50 companies at the end of August. I believe this is the result of having obtained approval on the basis of the distribution of various middleware and the strong security architecture that the T-Engine project aims at.

At present, in the T-Engine project, we are vigorously carrying out activities by dividing into several projects or groups, such a project to create hardware platforms together with the A level members who are actively participating in activities, a project to develop the T-Monitor, T-Kernel basic operating system and arrange a development environment, a group to develop middleware, and a group to develop a ubiquitous communicator. As for the specifications, they will become open to everyone in the near future. As I mentioned in the previous issue of TRONWARE, products are scheduled to appear one after the other with an aim on December. As the first shot, a T-Engine board that uses Hitachi Ltd.'s SH3-DSP (SH7727) has gone on sale. Even ordinary people can get their hands on "T-Engine/SH7727 Development Kit" from Personal Media. Because the T-Engine board and standard development will come into hand by means of this and thus allow people to immediately commence development, we can expect the distribution of middleware to become active.

Besides this, scheduled for sale are the µT-Engine board onto which Mitsubishi Electric has loaded an M32, and in November, the standard T-Engine board and the µT-Engine board onto which NEC has loaded MIPS, and also an ARM version from Yokogawa Digital Computer. Software on top of other CPUs will run on top of the respective CPU through recompiling.

Recently, in the T-Engine Forum, all the companies participating in a project we could call a virtual company concept are launching what we could call one large imaginary company. If the distribution of middleware becomes possible, we can proceed with micro company alliances in units of individual projects, which will reduce waste and bring about the realization of profitable concepts. The T-Engine Forum has had a rather good start. Around December, I would like to continue to report on this in "From the Project Leader" by bringing together future developments that will be further added.

The above opinion piece by TRON Project Leader Ken Sakamura appeared on page 1 of Vol. 77 of TRONWARE. It was translated and loaded onto this page with the permission of Personal Media Corporation.

Copyright © 2002 Personal Media Corporation

Copyright © 2002 Sakamura Laboratory, University Museum, University of Tokyo