Standards, such as those developed by committees of the IEEE, play a critical role in our industry. Without them, technology would not advance as rapidly as it does. With efficient and effective standards we can take advantage of the power of synergy by working together on foundational technologies while still maintaining the competitiveness of a vibrant marketplace.
But, since standards typically address technologies at the most basic levels, there tends to be a lot of them and that can be confusing if not properly understood. The IEEE P1687 Internal JTAG (IJTAG) standard, which is days away from final acceptance, takes advantage of previously standardized technologies, such as IEEE 1149.1 JTAG, but IJTAG breaks new ground to standardize how we deal with test and measurement instruments embedded in chips. In the late 1980s, when the development of the JTAG standard began, the notion of embedding instruments in silicon did not even exist. Needless to say, how to deal with them was not a concern of the original developers of JTAG. And trying to shoehorn new capabilities into a 25-year-old standard can produce a bloated and cumbersome standard that may not even perform its original mission as effectively as it once did.
Now that embedded instrumentation has become a veritable necessity, a new standard was needed and that is IJTAG.
To clarify any possible confusion among the standards that come into play with regards to embedded instrumentation, I’ve started writing a series of eBooks on “IJTAG vs JTAG vs IEEE 1500 ECT”. The first in this series is an“Introduction Tutorial”. It introduces the concepts and recalls some of the history concerning the use cases that drove the development of these three standards: IEEE 1149.1-JTAG, IEEE P1687-IJTAG and IEEE 1500-Embedded Core Test (ECT). Soon, the second eBook in this series will be published. That book, a “Technical Tutorial,” will be a much deeper technical dive into each of these three standards, explaining their distinct use cases and how they work together when technologies overlap. Come back to our eResources to download “IJTAG vs JTAG vs 1500 ECT | Technical Tutorial” soon.