December 15, 2006 -- Traditional approaches to finding signal-integrity issues in high-speed electronic designs involve using hardware triggering to isolate the event and/or deep memory time acquisitions to capture the event and then find it later. The increasing speed and complexity of high-performance electronic systems are revealing some key deficiencies in the traditional event identification methodologies for oscilloscopes.
However, a fundamentally new approach to event identification can significantly augment traditional methods. The end result is a much more powerful event identification system that lets design engineers quickly and easily identify signal-integrity issues. The new approach is most concisely described as event identification software.
Essentially, event identification software is smart software that scans each waveform acquired by the oscilloscope and looks for various signal-integrity issues or events of interest in the signal. It lacks the zero dead time of hardware triggering because it inherently has dead time while post-processing the previously stored record. Neither does it have the swallow and wallow capability of deep memory. Still, event identification software features a number of unique benefits that have become compelling to oscilloscope users:
By Lon Hintze. (Hintze is product manager for high-performance oscilloscopes at Agilent Technologies, Inc.)
This brief introduction has been excerpted from the original copyrighted article.