Build Your Own Embedded System Features VIA ARTiGO Pico-ITX Builder Kit

VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of embedded silicon and platform technologies, announced that the VIA ARTiGO Pico-ITX builder kit has been selected as the platform for the Build Your Own Embedded System track, a new hands-on embedded system development lab at Embedded Systems Conference Silicon Valley, taking place in San Jose from 14-18 April. Illustrating the suitability of the super-compact system for x86 embedded design, the VIA ARTiGO will also be featured in the Microsoft conference keynote, and is one of the primary VIA platform offerings for the Microsoft SPARK Your Imagination program, aimed at spurring innovative embedded system development among academics and hobbyists.

Visitors to ESC Silicon Valley will be able to catch up with the VIA ARTiGO and many other leading VIA embedded x86 technologies at the VIA booth 2110.

“We are excited to be featuring the VIA ARTiGO builder kit as an offering in our SPARK Your Imagination program,” said Scott Davis, Senior Marketing Manager, Microsoft Windows Embedded Academic & Community Programs. “The SPARK program demonstrates Microsoft’s commitment to the developer community by making leading development tools available to hobbyist developers and academics, helping to foster their creativity and drive innovation in the industry.”

Keynote: During the Microsoft Industry Address on Wednesday 16th April, Kevin Dallas and Mike Hall, General Manager and Software Architect respectively of the Windows Embedded Group, will define the evolution of embedded devices and their increasing integration into networked and service-based applications, highlighting the importance of creating an environment to facilitate those designs quickly and easily. The VIA ARTiGO will be used in two demonstrations highlighting two of the Windows Embedded innovations helping to drive these market changes.

BYOES Track: The Build Your Own Embedded System (BYOES) is a new track at ESC and has been sponsored by Microsoft Windows Embedded as a unique learning experience for developers. Working closely with system experts, attendees can design and build a real, practical embedded system, customizing a VIA ARTiGO to meet their device needs, and learn how to implement wireless and network connectivity, and GPS, web server and other key applications within the Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R2 environment. At the end of the event, each attendee gets to keep their newly configured VIA ARTiGO embedded system.

“We are delighted that Microsoft will leverage the small size and software compatibility of our ARTiGO Pico-ITX builder kit in both their keynote and the ‘Build Your Own Embedded System’ track at ESC,” said Daniel Wu, Vice President, VIA Embedded Platform Division, VIA Technologies, Inc. “Not only does the tiny system serve as the ideal platform for today’s x86 embedded devices, it underlines a perfect fit of Microsoft’s embedded software and VIA’s power efficient, highly integrated hardware.”

Microsoft SPARK Your Imagination Program
SPARK Your Imagination, a community-focused program, is a joint agreement between Microsoft and select hardware vendors to bring a complete offering of software and hardware, including the ARTiGO kit and the VIA EPIA PX10000 Pico-ITX board from VIA, to nonprofessional developers through a simple and affordable engagement model. The program offerings have an estimated retail value of US$1,300 and will be available immediately worldwide at prices ranging from US$250 to US$350.

SPARK Your Imagination (http://www.windowsembedded.com/spark) brings the benefits of embedded development on Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R2 and Visual Studio 2005 Professional Edition to hobbyist developers and the academic community. Through the SPARK Your Imagination community program, Microsoft is adding complementary offerings and extending them to the greater nonprofessional developer community to continue its dedication to the industry and future talent pool.

“Ever since our invention of the Mini-ITX form factor, VIA platforms have inspired professional developers, academics and hobbyists alike to create innovative systems, maximizing the creativity allowed by the increasingly tiny boards, so they make a perfect fit for Microsoft’s SPARK Your Imagination program that seeks to free the imagination in embedded design,” continued Wu.

VIA @ ESC Silicon Valley
VIA will again exhibit at the world’s largest international embedded event and technical conference, showcasing the richest blend of ultra-low power processor platforms, x86 embedded small form factor boards and complete systems. See the very latest fully integrated VIA VX800 digital media IGP chipset, new segment boards designed specifically for key markets, and much more at booth 2110.

About the VIA ARTiGO A1000 Pico-ITX Builder Kit
Measuring just 15cm x 11cm x 4cm (5.9″ x 4.3″ x 1.8″), the VIA ARTiGO is a DIY builder kit for enthusiasts wanting to build an ultra compact personal computer. The kit contains the VIA EPIA PX10000 Pico-ITX board, at 10cm x 7.2cm the smallest x86 board on the market, as well as a VIA PWB-N550 power board, and cables for IDE, PS/2, DVI and COM connectivity. Broadband networking and VGA display output are facilitated through the back of the tiny black chassis, while peripheral connectivity is made simple through USB and audio ports in the front.

Fully compatible with Microsoft Windows CE 6.0 R2, as well as all other recent Microsoft operating systems, the VIA EPIA PX board is powered by the 1GHz VIA C7 processor and supports up to 1GB of DDR2 533 SO-DIMM system memory. The single-chip VIA VX700 digital media IGP chipset boasts the VIA UniChrome Pro II IGP 3D/2D graphics core, MPEG-2/-4 and WMV9 hardware decoding acceleration and display flexibility, while the onboard VIA VT1708A HD audio codec also contributes to a rich entertainment experience.

About VIA Technologies, Inc.
VIA Technologies, Inc is the foremost fabless supplier of power efficient x86 processor platforms that are driving system innovation in the PC, client, ultra mobile and embedded markets. Combining energy-saving processors with digital media chipsets and advanced connectivity, multimedia and networking silicon enables a broad spectrum of computing and communication platforms, including its widely acclaimed ultra compact mainboards. Headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan, VIA’s global network links the high tech centers of the US, Europe and Asia, and its customer base includes the world’s top OEMs and system integrators.