What is LabVIEW?

LabVIEW stands for Laboratory Virtual Instrumentation Engineering Workbench. LabVIEW is the graphical programming language which allows for Data Acquisition, Instrument Control, Pre / Post Processing of Acquired Data, and Industrial Automation. It includes various varieties of platforms such as Microsoft Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, and UNIX.

The purpose of LabVIEW programming is to automate the processes used and measure equipments in the laboratory. The letter ‘G’ is named for graphical language. LabVIEW programming language was released in 1986 for Apple Macintosh. The developers of LabVIEW programming language is National Instruments. The new version of LabVIEW is known as LabVIEW 2010 and it was released on 4th August, 2010.

Graphical Programming Language:

The graphical programming language in LabVIEW is written on graphical symbols for describing programming actions instead of writing it in textual language.

Dataflow Programming:

In dataflow programming, the functions are executed only after the necessary data are received and the execution is controlled in straight forward manner.

Working of LabVIEW:

LabVIEW program is also known as VI (Virtual Instruments) because the operation and appearance are same as the actual instruments. However, LabVIEW programs are partially similar to some main functions, subroutines, and programs such as FORTRAN, PASCAL, C, and so on. The Virtual Instrument (VI) includes three important parts namely

  • Front Panel: It is a user interface of a Virtual Instrument. It has the capability to stimulate the ‘Front Panel of a Physical Instrument’.
  • Block Diagram or Wiring Diagram: It is the source code of Virtual Instrument developed in LabVIEW Graphical Programming Language named ‘G’. It is described as the ‘Actual Executable Program’.
  • Icon / Connector.

Benefits of LabVIEW:

  • Code compilation,
  • Interfacing,
  • User community,
  • Large libraries, and
  • Code reuse.


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