Basemark launches Rocksolid Core as OS for software-defined cars

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Basemark, a maker of graphics and autonomous car software, has revealed its new operating system for “software-defined vehicles,” dubbed Rocksolid Core.

Rocksolid Core is a licensable end-to-end solution for all car applications that incorporates underlying operating systems, such as automotive-grade Linux, Autosar Classic, and Autosar Adaptive. Rocksolid Core also includes reference applications for human machine interface (HMI), advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), and autonomous drive applications.

Finland-based Basemark built Rocksolid as a middleware for graphics and compute application development. Automakers have used it to create fancy infotainment dashboards for drivers. It’s optimized for embedded and mission-critical applications, such as autonomous drive, ADAS, and digital instrument clusters.

Basemark CEO Tero Sarkkinen said the company is enabling the future of cars, making it easier to create new car systems while reducing the cost of car computers considerably. Basemark says its Rocksolid Core uses fewer processors than conventional models, resulting in savings in both electronics and software.

Overview

The first prototype of Rocksolid Core will be launched this fall in the form of a proof-of-concept vehicle. Basemark will take part in the IAA Conference in Munchen from September 6 to September 12.

I’ve followed Sarkkinen’s career for a while now, and I had a cup of fine coffee with Sarkkinen in a cafe in Helsinki on the icy shore of the Gulf of Finland during one of the Slush events in 2013. A gamer and serial entrepreneur, he helped create benchmarks such as 3D Mark for PC games at Futuremark. He also started Rightware to make tools for developers looking to create visual user interfaces for cars. This was at a time when the auto industry was finally catching up with the computer era and getting better displays for dashboard information.

He sold Futuremark to United Laboratories in 2015 and two years later sold Rightware to Thundersoft. Sarkkinen and Arto Ruotsalainen started Basemark in 2015 to handle big data visualization for industrial markets. Then they bought Rightware’s benchmark business unit and began to focus on building tools for developers creating autonomous driving software. In 2016, the company developed a benchmark dubbed VRScore for virtual reality software, and in 2018 Basemark moved into autonomous driving software. Basemark has 70 employees in Finland, Germany, and the U.S. and raised $7.9 million in 2020.

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