|Matrox Design Assistant is an integrated development environment (IDE) for Windows® where vision applications are created by constructing an intuitive flowchart instead of writing traditional program code. In addition to building a flowchart, the IDE enables users to design a graphical web-based operator interface for the application. Since Matrox Design Assistant is hardware independent, you can choose any computer with GigE Vision® or USB3 Vision® cameras and get the processing power you need. This field proven software is also a perfect match for the Matrox 4Sight GPm vision controller or the Matrox Iris GTR smart camera. Matrox Design Assistant gives you the freedom to choose the ideal platform for your next vision project. Matrox Design Assistant 5
Flowchart and operator interface design are done within the Matrox Design Assistant IDE hosted on a computer running 64-bit Windows. A flowchart is put together using a step-by-step approach, where each step is taken from an existing toolbox and is configured interactively. The toolbox includes steps for image analysis and processing, communication, flow-control, and I/O. Outputs from one step, which can be images and/or alphanumeric results, are easily linked to the appropriate inputs of any other step. Decision making is performed using a conditional step, where the logical expression is described interactively. Results from image analysis and processing steps are immediately displayed to permit the quick tuning of parameters. A contextual guide provides assistance for every step in the flowchart. Flowchart legibility is maintained by grouping steps into sub-flowcharts. Matrox Design Assistant 5
In addition to flowchart design, Matrox Design Assistant enables the creation of a custom, web-based operator interface to the application through an integrated HTML visual editor. Users alter an existing template using a choice of annotations (graphics and text), inputs (edit boxes, control buttons, and image markers) and outputs (original or derived results, and status indicators). A filmstrip view is also available to keep track of and navigate to previously analyzed images. The operator interface can be further customized using a third-party HTML editor. Matrox Design Assistant 5
More information on templates can be found on the Quick Start Page of Matrox Design Assistant software.
Customizable developer interface
The Matrox Design Assistant user interface can be tailored by each developer. The workspace can be rearranged, even across multiple monitors, to suit individual preferences and further enhance productivity.
Operator interface viewable anywhere
The web-based operator interface, or Operator View, can be accessed locally or remotely through a HTML-5-capable web browser3. Local viewing is done on the same computer or Matrox vision controller as was used for development. Local viewing is also available with a Matrox smart camera through a simple touch screen connected to its video output and USB interface, which eliminates the need for an additional computer. Remote viewing is done from any computer, including dedicated HMI or touch-panel PCs. Matrox Design Assistant 5
A stand-alone HMI application can be created using Microsoft Visual Studio to run on the local or a remote computer as an alternative to the web-based operator interface.
Design a customized Operator View
Resulting Operator View as seen in a web browser
Access to specific Operator Views can be made to require user authentication (i.e., username and password) so only authorized personnel can modify key parameters of a running project. A project can be locked to a specific Matrox smart camera or vision controller when deployed, preventing it from running on an unauthorized platform. A project can also be encrypted during deployment to a platform, insuring that the project cannot be read or changed by unauthorized users. Projects locked to a platform are automatically encrypted.
3. Internet Explorer, Google Chrome / Chromium, and Firefox.
Image analysis and processing
Central to Matrox Design Assistant are flowchart steps for calibrating, enhancing, and transforming images, locating objects, extracting and measuring features, reading character strings, and decoding and verifying identification marks. These steps are designed to provide optimum performance and reliability.
Matrox Design Assistant includes Matrox Profiler, a separate utility to post-analyze the execution of a vision project for performance bottlenecks and timing issues. It presents the flowchart steps executed over time on a navigable timeline. Matrox Profiler permits searching for and selecting specific steps and their execution times for analysis. It computes statistics on execution times and presents these on a per step basis. Matrox Design Assistant 5
Connect to devices and networks
Matrox Design Assistant can capture images from any GigE Vision and USB3 Vision compliant camera. The software can communicate over Ethernet networks using the TCP / IP as well as the EthertNet / IP2, Modbus over TCP / IP, and PROFINET protocols, enabling interaction with programmable logic / automation controllers. Its QuickComm facility provides ready-to-go communication with these controllers. Matrox Design Assistant supports direct communication with select robot controllers5 for 2D vision-guided robotic applications. Matrox Design Assistant 5
Matrox Design Assistant can also be configured to interact with automation devices through a computer’s COM ports. Matrox Design Assistant can directly interact with the I/Os built into a Matrox vision controller, smart camera, and I/O card as well as the I/O available on a GigE Vision or USB3 Vision camera.
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2. Certification pending.
Matrox Design Assistant 5