I was curious if I can ask about how to implement an FSM within a decentralized design with electronic control modules in automotive engineering design. I’m having trouble understanding how an FSM won’t be a “master module.” Is that on topic and/or too broad?

  • \$\begingroup\$ It's hard to say; this description of your question is a little too vague. Can you be a little more specific? \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Tweed Sep 10 at 4:09
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    \$\begingroup\$ If you ask anything, please refrain from using acronyms anyway. I went to Wikipedia to guess what you meant by "FSM". I could find "Finite State Machine", but also "Fecal Sludge Management" and many other things. How do I know what you're talking about? \$\endgroup\$ – dim Sep 10 at 11:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ @DaveTweed So I'm designing a control system for a hyperloop pod competition for my school. I want to model the architecture like most automotive vehicles are designed with electronic control modules communicating with each other over a CAN bus. From what I understand of the CAN bus protocol is that it is multi-master which I understand has a decentralized design (please correct me if I am wrong). I also have to implement a state machine to automate the pod. I'm not sure how to design this without having the state machine act as the master. Is it possible to do this? Thanks \$\endgroup\$ – Aaron Van Rossum Sep 10 at 19:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ Interesting topic! But the actual question about distributed control systems still seems to be too generic and broad. It may be based on some confusion in terminology -- one wouldn't ordinarily consider a network of nodes communicating over a bus to be a single "state machine". Rather, each node would be considered to be a separate state machine, responding to and generating events on the bus. The state machine on one of those nodes might be the "master" in terms of how the system operates, but that doesn't mean that it has to be in any sense the master of the CAN bus. Two separate concepts. \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Tweed Sep 10 at 20:20
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    \$\begingroup\$ @dim, in this context, I think it's fair to guess that it's finite state machine rather than Flying Spaghetti Monster (Hail His Noodly Appendage). It would be silly if we made people spell out things like CMOS, TTL, BLDC, UHF, etc., in every question where they're used. Sometimes I don't get an abbreviation somebody uses, but 95% of the time that means it's not a question I'm qualified to answer anyway. \$\endgroup\$ – The Photon Sep 10 at 21:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ The other 5% is when somebody uses "OPA" to mean op-amp instead of optical parametric amplifier. \$\endgroup\$ – The Photon Sep 10 at 21:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ @ThePhoton The thing is, although I know about state machines, I honestly had no idea how to interpret "FSM" before going to Wikipedia, which is not the case with all the acronyms you used as examples. Of course, I don't pretend to know everything either. But, precisely, as an average-electronic-hobbyist-that-has-some-general-knowledge-about-things-but-is-no-expert, I think it makes my sense of what is a very common acronym vs. what has to be explicited quite relevant. \$\endgroup\$ – dim Sep 11 at 8:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @ThePhoton And the fact obscure abbreviations are used for questions we're not qualified to answer is actually a bit sad: because it makes the question even more out-of-reach. On the other hand, by expliciting the acronym, maybe you'll be interested in the question and its answers, and you'll learn something on the way. \$\endgroup\$ – dim Sep 11 at 8:56

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