The last frontier
Now, it’s the time to address the real-world need. You may start RTOS porting and application development by using the skills you have gained so far. Try to proceed in a step-by-step manner. Review your real-time system concepts with respect to their need and constituting components. You may try to run a demo application to clarify the idea of RTOS porting and for better understanding of the firmware activities. If you are confident up to that level, proceed to acquire some nice-to-have skillsets. Developing libraries and applications using inter-process communication mechanisms like mail boxes, priority inheritance under mutexes and semaphores can prove beneficial in the long run.
From classroom to industry
It is possible that your awareness of most of the above-mentioned terms is from a notional perspective only. But the industry needs something ex-tra—the actual hands-on experience is indispensable. In fact, being in embedded systems means experiencing the great technological revolution. Your bookish knowledge might not be sufficient to catch the speed.
So be a go-getter, dig all the possibilities to get a practical exposure. At the same time, be up-to-date about the latest technological trends. Newspapers, technical magazines, various technical seminars and, last but not the least, trade fairs may provide you with the opportunity to get an edge over your possible competitors.
You can learn about ‘chip to ship’ of an embedded system only after completing a proper project. Instead of depending only on your institutional projects, explore the possibilities to be a part of a live industrial project.
Various private- and public-sector organisations accommodate final-year and pre-final-year students in their live projects. I had discussed the relevant primary to-do steps in my article last month. Additionally, you may try to understand the project requirements in a better way with respect to design and documentation, development of prototype modules, coding and unit testing.
You may find various training institutes mushrooming all around. Before joining any course, be sure to compare the course curriculum with the skill sets discussed so far. Besides, you can always rely on vocational courses offered by the institutes of repute (see Institute Watch).
There has been a lot of speculation about the impact of the global recession on hiring in any industrial segment. As a budding professional, you could use this opportunity to improve your qualifications and inculcate additional skills that will come in handy once the market picks up again.
The author is a research analyst cum journalist at EFY