The Connected Battlefield Blog

Abaco Systems helps military and aerospace organizations minimize program risk and bring programs in on time and on budget. Our integrated, rugged systems solutions are based on a product range that includes single board computers, high performance embedded computing (HPEC), digital signal processing, GPGPU, image processing, sensor processing and avionics. We ally to those products our understanding of applications including ISR, EW, SIGINT, radar, sonar and 360 degree situational awareness. Our customers know that Abaco System brings industry-leading expertise and experience, together with broad and deep customer support.


Signal Processing

What's Next for Signal Processing? Part 1

The other day, I was swapping emails with one of my colleagues on a variety of subjects. After a small foray into a discussion of 1980s British sitcoms, he asked me (perhaps prompted by our recent press release ): “So—what are future signal processing systems going to look like?” Aside from the apparent strangeness of the juxtaposition of the subjects (not quite so odd, really, but not relevant here; I’ll explain if you care to ask), when I...


Apache Helicopter

Army Aviation Needs to Own Its Mission Capability Future

Judging by what I heard and saw last week at the Army Aviation Association of America Mission Solutions Summit (Quad-A) in Nashville, one thing was foremost in the Army Aviation community’s mind, and that was the budget. Budget cuts and sequestration impacts are well into the double digits, and the R&D budget decline is twice the rate of these cuts according to the Honorable Heidi Shyu, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition,...


AUSA Global Force Day 3: The Show’s a Hit

Short day today—the show is only open for three hours. I was thinking that, with only one appointment left, I would get an opportunity to walk the show. Boy, was I wrong. Our first appointment showed up and that took an hour and a half. Great meeting, though. A couple other walk-ons and—wow, now it’s 30 minutes left and folks are breaking down their booths already (I hate that—it’s so rude. Shouldn't the ref throw them a yellow card?). We waited...


AUSA Global Force

AUSA Global Force Day 2: Tired, but Pumped

OK folks: another long day. Got to the booth two hours before the show opened, hoping for the quiet time I needed to write up notes from the day before. Wow! I need to work on my penmanship because it looks like I wrote "Pyldhr vih cl wyr in May." I guess it’s possible that I was just musing on some Welsh phrase I learned from my time there, but I doubt it. (Any Welsh speakers want to weigh in here?) Anyway, I got most of the way through my...


3-star Lieutenant Patricia McQuistion

AUSA Global Force Day 1: Larry and John Meet the High-ups

Off to a running start. I can't believe this is the "small" Army show. The traffic has been great, and it's a good thing I’m writing this rather than dictating it because I'm a bit hoarse from talking to folks. So far, we have had three program managers and a 3-star general stop by. (I’m pretty sure it’s because of my " More Is Less " post, but it might be because John Chehansky and I look like a cross between aging Hollywood stars and...


Armored Vehicle

More Is Less

More is less—and that’s an idea that GE Intelligent Platforms is really on board with. That’s not to say more is worth less; more is still worth more. But, in fact, less is worth even more. Confused? Let me explain with a story (I always have a story…). I recall buying a new car costing $10,000. It was 1980, and that was a huge amount of money (at least to me) and way more than I had ever paid before, but the car was so cool, so modern and state...



GTC15: They Keep Coming Back

A real mark of the interest we’re seeing in what we’re showing here on the GE booth at GTC is the number of return visitors we saw on the second day. They came and had a look around on the first day, and I’m guessing we piqued their imagination—perhaps over a beer in the bar that evening—and they came back to find out more. What we discovered is that, in many cases, they’ve been working on stuff in the benign environment of the lab, putting...


Moon Lander

GTC15: Get the Buzz

For me, the first day of NVIDIA’s GTC was great in many ways—not least of which was the amount of interest shown in what we’re doing with rugged implementations of NVIDIA’s technology by a whole range of industries. Almost without exception, they could see what we’re trying to do: make incredible amounts of processing power deployable into the smallest, harshest spaces. Those could be in mining or energy exploration or transportation or heavy...


GTC15: Bangs and Deep Learning

The GPU Technology Conference has begun with a BANG—a "Big Bang," as NVIDIA's cofounder Jen-Hsun Huang told a packed audience at the opening day keynote. And this year's theme is all about using NVIDIA's GPU silicon for what they call "deep learning"—something I knew very little about until today. It turns out that deep learning is pretty cool and is all about teaching computers to see and think, enabling everything from image recognition (think...


Who's Watching Out for the Machines?

It seems every day now we need to watch our backs for an invisible threat. This threat lurks within just about every part of our lives today. It seeks to steal our personal dossier for the purposes of robbing us. It seeks to move digital currency from our pockets to theirs. Or in the case of state(less) sponsored characters, it seeks to disrupt and destroy. It is pervasive and unrelenting. We pay attention to this now because it’s personal. We...


Rugged Managed Etherned Switch

Next Step for Ethernet Switch Design

Ethernet switches, like most computing devices, are getting smarter. A few years ago, they were dumb, “plug-n-play” sort of things—they had a small number of interfaces and they performed a simple role. They would receive a packet of data, look at the Ethernet address, and send the packet out on one or more of the other interfaces. They could learn the source address from a received packet, and use that knowledge to decide where to send a future...


Emergency Physician

Is House a Business Development Guy in Disguise?

Last year, I made my first contribution to this blog . It was on the matter of business development and sought to define what it is "BD" people do. In that intervening year, I have ( as one of my other blog posts attests ) been taking "Great Courses." One of these was "Grand Rounds." In this course, the lecturer—a physician— went through the process by which a doctor diagnoses problems in patients. It struck me immediately that this problem-...


Predator sequence

Going Far Beyond Graphics: See You at the GPU Event of the Year

It’s less than a month now until NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference (GTC) opens its doors, and the excitement is mounting. For us at GE, GTC is a “must-attend” event because everyone who’s anyone in the world of GPU technology will be there. We work every day on building the Industrial Internet and Connected Battlefield one network-connected machine at a time. Advances in compute technologies are paving the way for smarter, more power-efficient...


Brilliant Machine

Brains Meet Brawn: Embedded Strength in Brilliant Machines

Since his recent peek into the industrial sector, which left him pleasantly surprised, regular Connected Battlefield contributor Rubin Dhillon has been drawing connections between several burgeoning areas in the era of the Industrial Internet. Here he shares yet more insight from his unique perspective. Have you seen GE’s series of “Brilliant Machines” commercials that ran a little while back? You know the ones that feature KITT (Knight Rider),...


Trends: 5 More

Trends: 5 More for 2015

Now that the holiday season is wrapped up, everyone seems intent on making predictions for the future. This is an annual ritual (along with the usual exercise and weight loss resolutions, Oscar buzz and corporate motivational speeches). While I am no clairvoyant, there are a number of things that seem pretty obvious as trends for the coming year in the embedded computing domain, and while these trends look to continue for some time further, the...