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NI Founders Outline the Future of Graphical System Design at 12th Annual NIWeek; Truchard and Kodosky Review 20 Years of LabVIEW and Discuss Future Innovations.

AUSTIN, Texas -- Dr. James Truchard, president, CEO and co-founder of National Instruments (Nasdaq:NATI), kicked off the 12th annual NIWeek, the world's leading virtual instrumentation conference and exhibition, on Tuesday by unveiling NI LabVIEW 8.20, the 20th anniversary edition of the graphical development platform, and offering a glimpse of graphical system design in the next 30 years. Jeff Kodosky, NI technology fellow and co-founder, closed the conference by reflecting on 20 years of LabVIEW innovation.

In his opening keynote, Truchard said, "Our virtual instrumentation approach revolutionized the industry with its combination of software and hardware, redefining the way engineers and scientists work. With LabVIEW 8.20, we are on the frontier of graphical system design, extending virtual instrumentation to transform the way engineers design, prototype and deploy their complex, next-generation systems."

Traditionally, engineers have conducted design and test applications separately. With graphical system design, engineers can use the intuitive LabVIEW programming environment with modular off-the-shelf hardware platforms, such as NI CompactRIO and PXI, to simultaneously design and test new products and perform real-time measurements, hardware-in-the-loop testing (HIL) as well as embedded control and monitoring. Truchard highlighted real-world applications of graphical system design, including a temperature monitoring and control system powered by the NI LabVIEW Embedded Module for ADI Blackfin Processors and the winning Virginia Tech Challenge X hybrid vehicle based on LabVIEW and CompactRIO.

Truchard also gave insight into the complexity of next-generation systems that will incorporate multiprocessors and field-programmable gate array (FPGA) technology. His vision is to expand LabVIEW system capabilities to deliver multiple models of computation and asynchronous, heterogeneous multiprocessing to address increasing complexity. In addition, National Instruments is developing pioneering technologies including intermediate frequency reconfigurable I/O (IF-RIO) for creating complex IF design and test systems and FPGA-based digital testing for advanced applications, such as testing radio frequency identification (RFID).

Today Jeff Kodosky, co-inventor of LabVIEW, closed NIWeek with his thoughts on the evolution of LabVIEW. He outlined how LabVIEW has grown from an inspirational, proof-of-concept prototype 20 years ago to a highly productive tool for designing and building measurement and control systems today. He also discussed usability and performance enhancements for future versions of LabVIEW, including continued development of object-oriented programming, timing and triggering features, debugging tools, and a new addition referred to as "Jeff's wire," which will simplify data exchange among asynchronous components of a LabVIEW diagram.

Kodosky concluded his speech by thanking the thousands of loyal LabVIEW users in attendance for their innovation, feedback, and suggestions over the past 20 years. "All of us on the development team enjoy living vicariously through you, as you work in so many different areas, building innovative applications and accomplishing so much," Kodosky said. "I invite you to continue to brainstorm with us on new ideas and help us prioritize them so we can all realize the dream for LabVIEW as it takes on an ever larger role in graphical system design."

Kodosky's work on LabVIEW spurred the development and widespread adoption of virtual instrumentation. In addition to his work at NI, he has made a significant impact working with The University of Texas at Austin to create UTeach, an innovative program that prepares students in the College of Science to become math and science teachers. He also is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Truchard, a respected veteran of the measurement and automation industry, often advises and counsels industry, academic and governmental organizations on technology issues. He was elected to the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences and is a member and former chairman of the Engineering Foundation Advisory Council. He co-founded National Instruments in 1976 in Austin, Texas, and has led the company through 29 years of growth.

About National Instruments

For 30 years, National Instruments (www.ni.com) has been a technology pioneer and leader in virtual instrumentation. Leveraging PCs and commercial technologies, virtual instrumentation increases productivity and lowers costs for test, control and design applications through easy-to-integrate software, such as NI LabVIEW, and modular measurement and control hardware for PXI, PCI, PCI Express, USB and Ethernet.

CompactRIO, LabVIEW, National Instruments, NI, ni.com and NIWeek are trademarks of National Instruments. Other product and company names listed are trademarks or trade names of their respective companies.
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Date:Aug 10, 2006
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