The way electronic devices are made never evolved
The way electronic devices are made never evolved: it’s still monolithic. Companies have to design everything, every time. We consider an electronic project to be 25% innovation and 75% re-inventing the wheel. Forcing them to deal with big risks, big money, and big skilled teams.
This is the reference design syndrome. A reference design is a way a company, expert in its domain, tries to explain to you how to control and command its components. But why don't they do it themselves? Why don't they sell you a plug-and-play subset?
Each year, there are 1 million new smart devices designed. For each designed device, we estimate that 500 k€ to 5 M€ are wasted while reinventing the wheel. The worldwide impact of this huge mess rises up to 5000 B€ wasted!
How this issue was solved in software?
Before 2012, when you wanted to build a web service such as Airbnb, you needed to develop everything: the chat, shopping cart management, search features, etc. In a nutshell, you needed a lot of skills and teammates!
Nowadays, it goes completely different thanks to microservices and API. You can use Intercom, Apicart, or Algolia. It has become faster, easier, cheaper! Even if you're not a tech guy, you can aim to build a nice MVP. In other words, microservices unleashed the SaaS industry since 2012.
Benefits of microservices:
- Accelerate turnaround
- Improve fault resolution
- Enable on-demand flexibility and scalability
- Make changes less expensive
- Unleash innovation
Additionally, microservices architecture allows a new way of thinking the product’s conception: instead of working with large “layer teams” like electronics, mechanics, or low-level teams, it’s now possible to unleash “function teams” who deal with microservices as full products, developing each of them from conception to production. With one function team responsible for one microservice, the whole product conception shifts from a vertical and monolithic way to a horizontal and microservice way.
This is a reality thanks to app containerization, being possible with companies like Docker.
That's exactly why we think the electronics industry needs to evolve the same way! Thanks to an open-source architecture to turn electronic devices into full microservices architectures. Such technology could first allow hardware microservices for electronics and embedded systems, but also to merge them with microservices already existing in the software industry. This implies a whole new way of considering these industries for their future.
We believe that the solution to unleash this new technology is an embedded software, and a communication bus and protocol, in order to link all the applications in a single system image.
Electronic design becomes:
- Universal: we can use several technologies to implement a function and it works the same way. You can exchange your brushless motor with a stepper, without any change in your code!
- Scalable: if your device needs 10 motors with fine control, you just have to make a good 1 and duplicate it 10 times. No need to build a big electric board, and it's easier to debug and maintain.
- Plug-and-play: thanks to hardware/software microservices, you can re-use your design in a plug-and-play way for other versions or projects. You capitalize on your previous design easily.
- Collaborative: thanks to this kind of architecture you can easily build a device by working with topic-oriented teams. No need to be familiar with every point of the project, you can focus on your own task.
To conclude: the development of electronic devices has never evolved and is still monolithic. Companies must always design everything from A to Z! Which involves a lot of skills, time, and risks ...
At Luos we believe that the best way to solve this problem is to make electronics "microservice-able". For this, we have created an open-source embedded system architecture, which makes electronics universal, modular, scalable, and which advances via distributed developments.
As is the case with SaaS, we want companies to be able to focus on their core business and not just on technical issues. To put it simply, we like to say that we are the "Docker" of electronics and the embedded system.
How do we make it possible?
Our slogan: Get rid of electronics struggles thanks to an open-source architecture to turn electronics devices and subsets as microservices.
We want to make electronics development easier, cheaper, faster and more accessible!
Thanks for reading! — The Luos' Team