LV-TASC, the LabVIEW Teensy/Arduino Sketch Compiler, Looks to Bring LabVIEW to Microcontrollers

Clever compiler turns LabVIEW projects into commented, ready-to-run Arduino sketches compatible with high-end Teensy boards.

LabVIEW specialist Lexcom Consultants is looking to bridge the gap between the world of Arduino-compatible Teensy microcontrollers and LabVIEW with a smart compiler that allows LabVIEW development to be deployed onto microcontrollers with ease.

"The LV-TASC is a Teensy | Arduino sketch compiler for LabVIEW that turns LabVIEW programs into sketches, which can then be used for Arduino compatibles," the company explains of the project. "The LV-TASC lets programmers use LabVIEW graphical programming with low-cost off-the-shelf embedded systems for recreational and commercial applications, with open source scalability, making dataflow-oriented graphical programming available to existing as well as prospective users of these embedded targets."

"The recent leap in microprocessor computational power, now available in very affordable ARM microprocessor boards, such as the primarily recommended and officially supported 600MHz+ Teensy boards (available for around $25), makes for the perfect timing to innovate in this area!"

The compiler works by exporting LabVIEW applications as Arduino INO sketches, which can then be imported into the Arduino IDE for compilation into binary format and deployment onto compatible microcontroller boards. The company claims it uses "optimized, intelligent porting methods" to improve performance without sacrificing the ability to debug and further develop the resulting code — and includes cross-tracing between block diagrams and sketching, and allows for automatic or user-controlled commenting from within LabVIEW itself.

"We recommend LV-TASC for all of you makers, hobbyists, students, enthusiasts, engineering lecturers, professional engineers, businesses with rapid embedded development interests, and maybe even newcomers," the company writes, "who are interested in combining the unparalleled productivity, modularity, and ease of learning of LabVIEW with the capabilities of modern, affordable, off-the-shelf microcontroller boards."

Lexcom Consultants is funding development of the tool, which presently exists only as an in-house utility, via Kickstarter, with pricing set at £200 (around $260) for a license — 60 percent off the planned retail pricing, the company claims.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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