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The remarkable drop in the cost of embedded computing, sensing, and actuation is creating a corresponding explosion in the use of these technologies in new systems. In order to reduce complexity and contain costs, manufacturers are moving toward modularizing their systems and building reconfigurable products from simpler but smarter components. Of particular interest have been highly reconfigurable systems, i.e., systems that can be customized, repaired, and upgraded at a fine level of granularity throughout their lifetime. High reconfigurability puts new demands on the dynamic calibration, control, and coordination software in the system. There is much promise in existing software approaches, but current techniques face a number of new challenges before they can be embedded in the kind of real-time, distributed, and dynamic environment found in highly reconfigurable systems. In this tutorial paper, we discussed challenges, solutions, and lessons learned in the context of a long-term project at PARC to bring such techniques to a highly reconfigurable paper path system.
American Control Conference, 2009. ACC '09.
Date of Conference: 10-12 June 2009