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Mitsubishi shows off Java chips

Mitsubishi is demonstrating a new breed of chips that run Java applets.

Mitsubishi Electric America announced today that it has ported the Java programming language to a multimedia processor and is demonstrating applications running on the chip.

The U.S. arm of the Japanese electronics company demonstrated a "proof-of-concept" porting of the Java programming language to its M32R/D multimedia processor, providing a "system-on-chip" for portable, distributed applications, the company said. The demonstration took place at JavaOne, Sun's Worldwide Java Developer Conference.

The M32R/D, announced earlier this year, integrates 2MB of DRAM and 2KB of cache SRAM onboard a 32-bit RISC processor.

The device also includes digital signal processor (DSP) capability, a memory controller, and peripheral circuits on the chip. DSPs are more adept than general processors at handling certain kinds performance-intensive multimedia tasks.

"Embedding Java in silicon will enable the various classes of appliances that will emerge from upcoming network-centric computing industry efforts," said Stephen Hester, vice president at Mitsubishi Electric America.

Earlier this month, Mitsubishi announced it is partnering with Oracle in the development and manufacture of a network computer.

Mitsubishi's demonstration at JavaOne shows real-time, Internet-based applications including: local and streaming audio recording and playback; streaming audio download; and real-time drawing functions. All devices incorporate the M32R/D multimedia processor with the Java programming language.

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