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Search in Book Reviews

The ACCU passes on review copies of computer books to its members for them to review. The result is a large, high quality collection of book reviews by programmers, for programmers. Currently there are 1918 reviews in the database and more every month.
Search is a simple string search in either book title or book author. The full text search is a search of the text of the review.
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Embedded Control Systems in C/C++
Jim Ledin
CMP Books
239pp + CD
Francis Glassborow
embedded systems
Appeared in:
I was browsing in Blackwells a few weeks ago when I noticed this book. What intrigued me was not the title but the sub-title,An Introduction for Software Developers Using MATLAB. My contact happily provided me with a review copy.

The interesting thing about that sub-title is that it couples software developers with MATLAB. For those of you that do not know, commercial licences for the latter start at around $1900 for an individual. That is an awful lot of money in the context of most development tools. It is not an unreasonable sum for someone working on high-integrity or safety-critical software. A considerable proportion of control system software would come under that heading. A company working on products that would include one or more embedded control systems should be happy to pay out substantial blocks of money to ensure their employees have relevant tools.

I was not far into reading this book before I realised that there was a curious juxtaposition of a premise that the software developer reading the book would be unfamiliar with the mathematics of control systems and that the reader would be comfortable with mathematical formulae up to and including ones involving definite integrals.

It seems to me that the author expects the reader to use MATLAB as a simulation tool to test out his models before implementing them in either C or C++.

I think I have to stop this review here because without access to a copy of MATLAB it is effectively impossible to explore the potential experiences of someone in the target readership. The author's assertions that this book is for software developers without prior experience in control systems and without any mastery of advanced mathematics may be true. However I lack both the time and the tools (MATLAB) to validate the claim.

If there is a reader who meets the requirements (including that of lack of experience) and has access to MATLAB I would be happy to pass the review copy on to them for an in depth review.