Mike Woodward, The MathWorksNov 03, 2005 (5:00 AM)CommsDesign
Developing communications standards is an increasingly difficult task. Due to the cost, complexity and specialized knowledge needed, today's standards are usually developed using a consortium approach, one that often adds to development problems. Driven by several factors, this approach to standards development has been used since the late 1980s. Complexity is a key factor, both at the system and algorithm levels.
Each new generation of standards is at least an order of magnitude more complex than its predecessor. As a result, the cost of developing standards has increased, in most cases, beyond the level that an individual company would be comfortable shouldering. The growing size and complexity of standards also means that more companies are needed to provide the specialized skills required. Because international markets are now a target of most standards, involving companies from different countries helps with regulatory and market acceptance.
By its very nature, standards development requires a nimble approach; every time the standard consortium adopts a change, models must be updated and re-run. More partners in the consortium can mean more changes.
The traditional approach to standards development, using C models, is ill-suited for this kind of rapid and iterative development. Model-based design provides an alternative method of modeling communications standards with hierarchical, block-based models that drastically reduces the time required to make modifications.
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