We talked about the daily work and projects carried out in the Embedded Systems Competency Center and the future of the whole Embedded sector with Michał Szczypior, Senior Software Engineer in Embedded Systems Competency Center that started operating on April 1st, 2018. The Center carries out projects for prestigious customers from the automotive sector as well as semiconductor and electronic devices producers and transportation vehicles manufactures. The development of the new area of Sii’s offer has also increased the importance of finding ambitious, courageous and passionate engineers ready to build advanced Embedded systems for customers of the Embedded Systems Competency Center.
Barbara Kun, Marketing Specialist: Michał, you have been working in Sii for several years now. During this time, you changed responsibilities and projects. Could you tell us, where do you work right now and what do you do on a daily basis?
Michał Szczypior, Senior Software Engineer: Of course, my main responsibility is building software for Embedded Systems. However, apart from coding, I also design system architecture and I’m engaged in Pre-sales activities. Attracting customers through technical contribution is very exciting.
B.K.: Can you share some details regarding projects you are a part of?
M.S.: Since I have started working in the Embedded Systems, most of my work in our projects includes bare-metal low-level coding as well as building software for OS/RTOS. Nonetheless it is not the entire scope of my work. As an example, I can mention our project that involved creating a whole toolchain based on open-source components and integrating it with Eclipse software as a plugin. I was also involved in building software in a technology that has become very trendy recently – Embedded Java. In addition, in this particular project the embedded system controlling application was also created in Java Script.
B.K.: In projects that are so complex unexpected situations are unavoidable. What challenge did you have to face during one of your recent projects?
M.S.: The toughest challenge for me is not developer work but the way of building software – meaning methodologies, roles and responsibilities, being flexible. The process of developing a project is often influenced by the customer, tasks and also expectations change. Our role is to deliver a solution that will meet the dynamically changing client’s needs and at the same time maintain top quality. All that keeping strict deadlines. This is the real challenge!
B.K.: In projects as demanding it is often our colleagues that can offer us the much needed support. Could you tell us more about the team you are working with? What do you value in it the most?
M.S.: What I value the most in our team is a good attitude. In moments of chaos caused by the factors mentioned earlier, even right before the deadline, we can still enjoy a good atmosphere and maintain our sense of humour.
B.K.: What would you say to someone who is considering joining the Embedded Systems team? What kind of career paths are waiting for engineers starting their work?
M.S.: You have to remember that Embedded Systems is not only about creating software that will allow us to launch FW on microcontroller. More often than not customers expect comprehensive solutions that would include the main product developed as embedded systems as well as software / high-level applications that would control it. That’s why an engineer who is starting work in Embedded Systems can count on not only getting to know more about issues related to the core Embedded sector but also high dynamics of projects and learning to code in different technologies.
B.K.: According to you, what is the most interesting aspect of working in the Embedded sector?
M.S.: Diversification. This is closely connected to my previous answer. Getting to know the whole IT stack from assembler to Java or even small web applications in one single project is challenging but at the same time very satisfying. Of course, the possibility itself to interact with devices and observing effects of your work – like a flashing LED – is a big bonus.
B.K.: To conclude, let’s look into the future. In your opinion, what are prospects for the Embedded sector?
M.S.: There is a strong demand for products from the Embedded area and I think it will stay this way for some time. Without a doubt everything related to the Internet of Things and the Automotive sector is getting more and more attention. Even now you can see an increasing interest in related technologies. It is hard to imagine these products without embedded systems. IoT is getting more and more present in our everyday lives from watches, to toothbrushes that are connected via Bluetooth with smartphones, to smart home solutions. After all our smart kettle has to communicate with our smart washing machine.
The article prepared by: Barbara Kun