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SnapUI brings Linux development to embedded systems

ByteSnap Design has launched its Linux OpenGL SnapUI user interface framework. The new design, rewritten from the ground up, is focused on supporting the iMX6 processor to leverage graphical performance, while at the same time retaining core features.

ByteSnap has concentrated on Linux support for this new release of Snap UI, its application development toolkit for embedded systems. As a result Linux developers can now create interfaces for apps intended for use in industrial and other business settings.

“ByteSnap Design has a growing portfolio of clients who prefer to use embedded Linux for their design projects,” says ByteSnap Design Director, Graeme Wintle. “As a result this new release of SnapUI, we’ve gone back to the drawing board, focusing on applying the core features of the SnapUI to a new Linux-only OpenGL implementation.”

The original SnapUI product offers rapid prototyping on Windows embedded systems, now this new Linux-only version supports an optimised OpenGL engine.

According to Wintle; “SnapUI will enable developers and graphic designers to build software for an embedded device directly on a Linux or Windows PC even before hardware development of the device has been completed. The software can be demonstrated on the PC and when the user interface has been agreed, it can be recompiled and installed on the embedded device. This reduces the dependencies between hardware and software workstreams and accelerates development.”

In the compiled SnapUI library, a powerful OpenGL engine renders content optimised for Freescale i.MX6 processor hardware and achieves high frame rates with reduced power consumption, compared with a software rendered solution.

SnapUI will also simplify localisation by separating the user interface components of the target application from the core software. By modifying a single SnapUI XML file and a selection of images, an application's look and feel can be completely customised, often without additional developer input. Customisation can range from language translations for localisation to different graphics and text for applications installed on devices with various screen sizes or input methods.

The announcement signals sustained investment in the development of SnapUI by ByteSnap Design.

Neil Tyler

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