Archives: Events


Open Source Strategy and Governance

March’s virtual event, on the theme of Open Source Strategy and Governance.

AGENDA
18:00 – Feel free to join the online meeting to chat with other participants
18:30 – Presentations
20:00 – Closing discussion

There is no requirement to register, you can just connect to livestream using BigBlueButton using this link.  Thank you to GWDG for providing hosting for this meeting.  We are also recording the talks for later posting on our YouTube channel.

The livestream link will be open from 18:00 for networking, and the event will start at 18:30 prompt. We’ll keep the link open afterward for discussion.

Not a BCS member? Don’t worry! Our monthly newsletter provides the latest news, information, and events in the world of IT. We’re here to keep you updated! Sign up today at campaign.bcs.org/bcs-supporter.  If you would just like to be added to the friends of the Open Source SG mailing list, then please send an email to ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk with subscribe in the subject.  You can unsubscribe at any time by emailing unsubscribe-ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk.

Aligning open source governance with your organisation’s business objectives

Gilles Gravier (Wipro)

Governance is a key element of your open source activities. It should be governed by your open source strategy, and it should be done in ways that directly support your corporate business objectives. In this session, we’ll explore what kind of business objectives can be supported by an open-source strategy and those that are specifically the object of a strategically defined governance model. 

 

The Security Risk of Using Open Source Software

St. John Harold

A key aspect of Governance is understanding the risks associated with using Open Source Software. This session will focus on what we have defined as compliance risks, explaining our reasons for linking compliance with security within the OSS domain covering the compliance of confidentiality, integrity, availability but also looking at privacy and the certification of OSS. This is based on recent research into the wider area of OSS risks. 

 

James McLeod 

Lloyds Banking Group 


Continuous integration and development with Kubernetes

February’s virtual event, on the theme of Continuous Integration and Development using Kubernetes.

AGENDA
18:00 – Feel free to join the online meeting to chat with other participants
18:30 – Presentations
20:00 – Closing discussion

There is no requirement to register, you can just connect to livestream using BigBlueButton using this link.  Thank you to GWDG for providing hosting for this meeting.  We are also recording the talks for later posting on our YouTube channel.

The livestream link will be open from 18:00 for networking, and the event will start at 18:30 prompt. We’ll keep the link open afterward for discussion.

Not a BCS member? Don’t worry! Our monthly newsletter provides the latest news, information, and events in the world of IT. We’re here to keep you updated! Sign up today at campaign.bcs.org/bcs-supporter.  If you would just like to be added to the friends of the Open Source SG mailing list, then please send an email to ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk with subscribe in the subject.  You can unsubscribe at any time by emailing unsubscribe-ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk.


London Open Source Meetup for RISC-V

The “Plan B” COVID-19 rules have rather spoilt our arrangements in the short term. However, one week later than originally planned, we are delighted to be able to bring you a purely virtual quarterly meetup for the London open source community, focusing on RISC-V and open source, hosted by the BCS Open Source Specialist Group and the UK Open Source Hardware User Group.  These meetings provide an opportunity to share the latest ideas around open source in the RISC-V ecosystem, combined with plenty of time for networking.

This month is dedicated to the AI Vector Accelerator (AVA) project at Southampton University.

This will be a purely virtual meeting.  You are invited to join and socialize from 18:00, the main talks will start at 18:30.

There is no requirement to register, you can just connect to the videoconference using BigBlueButton using this link.  Thank you to GWDG for providing hosting for this meeting.  We are also recording the talks for later posting on our YouTube channel.

The livestream link will be open from 18:00 for networking, and the event will start at 18:30 prompt. We’ll keep the link open afterwards for discussion.

Not a BCS member? Don’t worry! Our monthly newsletter provides the latest news, information and events in the world of IT. We’re here to keep you updated! Sign up today at campaign.bcs.org/bcs-supporter.  If you would just like to be added to the friends of the Open Source SG mailing list, then please send an email to ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk with subscribe in the subject.  You can unsubscribe at any time by emailing unsubscribe-ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk.
Videos of the talks will be made available on the BCS OSSG YouTube channel after the meeting.

Benchmarking the AI Vector Accelerator (AVA) with CV32E40X using the CV-X-IF

Oana Lazar, Kunal Dalal, Adomas Lebedys & Yu Xia, University of Southampton

The AVA coprocessor implements a small subset of the RISC-V Vector extension, intended to accelerate AI inference applications. The point is to demonstrate that considerable speedup can be achieved using a minimal instruction set extension (in this case 8 instructions).

The AVA project has created a reference implementation using the Open Hardware Group’s CV32E40X core. This implementation is particularly notable for being the first use of the Open Hardware Group’s X-Interface, designed to make the creation of custom instruction set extensions as simple as possible. The benefit is measured using the TinyMLPerf benchmarking suite.

In this talk and discussion, the team will present the work to date, the challenges they faced, and the results they have achieved as part of this Master’s project sponsored by Embecosm.

Oana Lazar is in her fifth and final year studying MEng Electronic Engineering at the University of Southampton. During her fourth year, she completed a 12-month UKESF industrial placement with Tessent Embedded Analytics (formerly UltraSoC and now a Siemens Company) working on the Secure-CAV project. Her interests include embedded software for security applications, cybersecurity, and machine learning. She was recently named the 2021 UKESF Scholar of the Year.

Yu Xia is a final year MEng Electronic Engineering student at the University of Southampton studying modules focused on computer systems and VLSI design. Yu’s interests are within RTL design and verification for RISC computer architectures, previously interning
at Arm as part of his UKESF scholarship scheme. He will be joining Arm in September as a graduate systems engineer.

Kunal Dalal is in the final year of his MEng in Electronic Engineering at the University of Southampton. Alongside his part-time role in Application Engineering at Arm as an undergraduate, he is undertaking research with members of the POETS project at
the University of Southampton. Kunal’s interests lie in the RTL design of different accelerator microarchitectures, and the deployment of heterogeneous architectures in general.

Adomas Lebedys is in the final year of his MEng degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Southampton, with interests in systems programming, computer architecture, and machine learning. Outside his course, he leads the design of
automotive electronics and embedded software for the Southampton University Formula Student Team’s electric vehicle.

 


XMas Special

December’s virtual event, with an XMas special. We will have exciting talks revolving around XMas AND open-source of course.

We planned for a hybrid event but due to the COVID development decided for a purely virtual event.

AGENDA
18:00 – OSSG Steering Committee meeting – Feel free to join
18:30 – Presentations (see below the agenda) – Youtube Playlist
20:30 – Closing discussion

There is no requirement to register, you can just connect to livestream using BigBlueButton using this link.  Thank you to GWDG for providing hosting for this meeting.  We are also recording the talks for later posting on our YouTube channel.

The livestream link will be open from 18:00, where the OSSG committee will meet, and the event will start at 18:30 prompt. We’ll keep the link open afterward for discussion.

Not a BCS member? Don’t worry! Our monthly newsletter provides the latest news, information, and events in the world of IT. We’re here to keep you updated! Sign up today at campaign.bcs.org/bcs-supporter.  If you would just like to be added to the friends of the Open Source SG mailing list, then please send an email to ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk with subscribe in the subject.  You can unsubscribe at any time by emailing unsubscribe-ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk.

Let there be light!” – the publicly programmable Christmas lights on Lymington Church tower

Peter Salisbury

Video

Any member of the public is able to program a light show on the tower of St.Thomas Church in Lymington. The light shows use pixel-addressable ws2812 LED strips and RGB DMX flood lights. People can choose the light shows in real-time using any web browser, either from a list of already-programmed shows or by creating their own using a simple interface. Statistics are kept so that people can see which shows are the most popular etc. All the software in this system is open source.

Peter Salisbury was an electronics geek in his teens just as logic chips first hit the Maplin catalogue. From building computers in a cupboard he went to study Computation at UMIST, graduating in 1980. He worked in system tools with Burroughs Machines, then moved to language design and compiler writing for a Project Management company. In 1989 he moved to Salisbury to study theology in preparation for becoming a vicar. He was ordained in 1992 and is currently Vicar of Lymington on the south coast near Southampton. He has never really forgotten he’s a geek.

 

Breaking the AI sound barrier

Andy Thomason, Atomic Increment
Will Jones, Embecosm

Video

Modern compiler technology combined with great leaps forward in computer hardware enable us to compute faster than ever.

Those who think that we have reached a “limit” on compute speed will be surprised to find that we are still becoming more efficient in the field of AI and statistics.

Despite the upper bound on clock speed, computer word size is getting even bigger and autovectorisation and multicore are the key to unlocking the potential of modern hardware without resorting to GPUs.

To achieve this we need to break away from the software of the 20th century and rediscover how to write good maths and stats functions that can go a hundred times or more faster than the code of previous generations on the same hardware.

Andy Thomason runs the extendr project, a Rust interface to the R programming language.  He has worked for many years in game development at the Psygnosis and Sony technology groups and has presented dozens of talks on game development for the BCS.  Andy wrote much of the PS3 and Vita compilers for Sony. After several decades of promoting C++ in game development, Andy now teaches Rust with Ferrous Systems and develops open source Rust libraries.

Dr Will Jones is head of AI and Machine Learning for Embecosm.  He recently completed his PhD at the University of Kent, which can be simply summarized as attempting to create a rigorous mathematical framework for the definition of artificial consciousness.

Building a Data Lake with Open Source Components

Hendrik Nolte, GWDG

Video

Across various domains, data lakes are successfully utilized to centrally store all data of an organization in their raw format. This promises a high reusability of the stored data since a schema is implied on read, which prevents an information loss due to ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) processes. Despite this schema-onread approach, some modeling is mandatory to ensure proper data integration, comprehensibility, and quality. These data models are maintained within a central data catalog which can be queried. To further organize the data in the data lake, different architectures have been proposed, like the most widely known zone architecture. Here, data is assigned to different zones according to the processing they were subjected to. In this work, we present a novel data lake architecture based on FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable) Digital Objects (FDO) with (high-performance) processing capabilities. The FAIR Digital Objects are connected by a provenance-centered graph. Users can define generic workflows, which are reproducible by design, making this data lake implementation ideally suited for science. During this talk, challenges and opportunities for open source software as elementary building blocks of a data lake will be discussed.

Hendrik Nolte ObtainedB.Sc & M.Sc. in Physics at the University of Göttingen. Since November 2019: At GWDG in the HPC-Team. Working on a third-party-funded project where a data lake is being built for MR images.

 

The Art of Coding || Is Coding Art?

Julian Kunkel, University of Göttingen/GWDG

Video

We’ll investigate how coding itself is beautiful and shows parallels to arts. Code can be beautifully written, arranged, and generate appealing outputs. It is also artistic to cope with system limitations such as memory limitations while producing terrific results. Overall computer technology empowers users to become artists.

Dr. Kunkel is a Professor in High-Performance Computing at the University of Göttingen and the Deputy Head High-Performance Computing at GWDG.

The Cuttletree: Open source electronic decorations for your Christmas Tree

Jeremy Bennett, Embecosm

Video

In 2018 Embecosm was entered a tree into the Lymington annual Christmas Tree exhibition.  The result was the cuttletree, a set of programmable decorations based on Saar Drimer’s Cuttlefish Arduino board.  For good measure the tree could be programmed remotely via Twitter, allowing the light pattern to be changed.  And of course everything is open source, even the Cuttlefish board design files!

Dr Jeremy Bennett is Chief Executive of Embecosm, a consultancy specialising in open source compilers, processor models, operating systems and AI/ML.  He is a former Chair of the BCS Open Source Specialist Group.


Lightning Talks and AGM

This is our annual lightning talks evening, where anyone has the opportunity to speak for up to 10 minutes on their favorite open source topic. As always the meeting is held jointly with the UK Open Source User Group.  There is still room for one or two more talks, so if you would like to speak, please send a title, brief abstract and biography to either Jeremy Bennett or Julian Kunkel so we can add you to the program.

The meeting will start with the Annual General Meeting (AGM), which everyone is welcome to attend.

AGENDA
18:00 – Feel free to join the online meeting to chat with other participants
18:30 – AGM
18:50 – Lightning talks
20:00 – Closing discussion

This will be a hybrid meeting, with some people attending in person in London and others able to join via videoconference.  For those wishing to attend in person, registration is essential.  We anticipate numbers attending will still be restricted.

Register here to attend in person

For remote attendees, there is no requirement to register, you can just connect to the videoconference using BigBlueButton using this link.  Thank you to GWDG for providing hosting for this meeting.  We are also recording the talks for later posting on our YouTube channel.

The live stream link will be open from 18:00 for networking, and the event will start at 18:30 prompt. We’ll keep the link open afterwards for discussion.

Not a BCS member? Don’t worry! Our monthly newsletter provides the latest news, information, and events in the world of IT. We’re here to keep you updated! Sign up today at campaign.bcs.org/bcs-supporter.  If you would just like to be added to the friends of the Open Source SG mailing list, then please send an email to ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk with subscribe in the subject.  You can unsubscribe at any time by emailing unsubscribe-ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk.

The videos are available in our YouTube Playlist.

Annual General Meeting (AGM)

Everyone is welcome to attend, but only BCS members may vote. We will have brief reports on the past year’s activities and then elect a new committee. Note: non-BCS members may stand for all committee posts except Chair, Treasurer, and Membership secretary. We are seeking nominations for the following posts. At present we have the following nominations declared:

  • Chair/Advocacy and outreach: Dr Julian Kunkel
  • Treasurer: Dr Richard Miller
  • Membership Secretary: no nominations yet received
  • Inclusion officer: Prof Cornelia Boldyref
  • Web supremo: Simon Worthington
  • Early career/Student representatives: Daniel Broomhead, Mary Bennett
  • Committee members: Alan Bennett, Jeremy Bennett, Reza Alvi

Existing committee member standing for re-election

Our thanks to Sevan Janiyan, who is standing down from the committee, after many years helping organize our events.  We depend on an active committee to put on all our events and drive our advocacy and outreach work. Please consider putting yourself forward.

A Roadmap for BCS OSSG in 2021/2022

Julian Kunkel

Julian will present his plan for the next year of activity by the BCS Open Source SG.

Julian is currently the Membership Secretary of BCS OSSG and leads on Advocacy. He is the nominee for Chair for the next year.

Keeping a project going

Chris Swan

Chris’s Raspberry Pi controlled sous vide water bath has been used 227 times over the course of 8.5yrs. Some parts of the project remain original, but many have needed replacement. This talk will cover the effort needed to sustain something over years.

Viewpoint Linux

Sevan Janiyan

Sevan will present the Viewpoint Linux distribution.

Sevan Janiyan supports numerous open-source projects, including OpenBSDNetBSDFreeBSD and CoovaChilli.

A high-angle laptop stand

Jeremy Bennett

I usually work using a large (32″) monitor, with my laptop alongside.  Almost all my work is on the main monitor, with the laptop having a browser window with tabs for all my various comms channels.  In order to avoid a stiff neck, I need the laptop screen to be aligned close to the top of the main monitor.  Something that can be achieved by opening up my laptop until it is nearly flat and then raising it around 70mm.  However, you can’t buy a laptop stand designed to hold a laptop in this position.

I will present my high-angle laptop stand, built almost entirely from wood reclaimed from pallets and packing cases.  The design is open source and has the flexibility for some components to be 3D printed if desired.  The talk will include a demonstration of the completed laptop stand.

Dr. Jeremy Bennett is Chief Executive of Embecosm, an international open-source software consultancy specializing in compiler development, processor modeling, embedded operating system bring-up, and AI.  Since 2017 he has served as Chair of the BCS Open Source Specialist Group.

Declarative Co-existence of VMs and Containers on a common Kubernetes-native platform

Vishal Anand

Virtual machines (VMs) on one platform and containers on another, technically, are a relic of bygone times. How about having both on the same platform? In addition, what if that comes with proven open-source technologies from the leader itself? Organizations can now bring virtualized applications that cannot be containerized in the given time and budget on a common production-grade Kubernetes platform for management, operational consistency and efficiency – declaratively automated.

Vishal Anand is Chief Architect, Thought Leader Technologist and Sr. Inventor in IBM – currently innovating modern hybrid cloud journeys for accelerated digital transformations. He is Fellow of BCS.

One-Wire

Andy Bennett

Andy Bennett has served on the events sub-committee of BCS OSSG for many years.

Hackathons in the Open-Source Domain

Daniel Broomhead

Daniel Broomhead serves as the Early Career/Student representative on the BCS OSSG committee.

Testing LLVM with GCC

Mary Bennett, Embecosm

LLVM has two main test suites:

  • the regression test suite tests the compilation from source to IR; and
  • the nightly test suite is a body of often large applications which are compiled and executed.

However, there is no large body of tests of detailed functionality which is compiled right down to the target object code and executed. At previous conferences, we have described the changes we have made to allow the GCC test suite to be used for nightly public regression testing of LLVM for RISC-V. Here we will discuss the necessary transformations to the testsuite to support LLVM.

Mary Bennett is a software tool chain engineer at Embecosm. She serves on the advocacy and outreach subcommittee of BCS OSSG.


London Open Source Meetup for RISC-V

Our quarterly meetup for the London open source community, focusing on RISC-V and open source, hosted by the BCS Open Source Specialist Group and the UK Open Source Hardware User Group.  These meetings provide an opportunity to share the latest ideas around open source in the RISC-V ecosystem, combined with plenty of time for networking. This month we have a strong AI theme.

This will be a hybrid meeting, with some people attending in person in London and others able to join via videoconference.  You are invited to join and socialize from 18:00, talks will run from 18:30-20:00 with 30 minutes at the end for further discussion and socializing.  Due to COVID-19 restrictions, for those wishing to attend in person, registration is essential.  We anticipate numbers attending will still be restricted.

Register here to attend in person

For remote attendees, there is no requirement to register, you can just connect to the videoconference using BigBlueButton using this link.  Thank you to GWDG for providing hosting for this meeting.  We are also recording the talks for later posting on our YouTube channel.

The livestream link will be open from 18:00 for networking, and the event will start at 18:30 prompt. We’ll keep the link open afterwards for discussion.

Not a BCS member? Don’t worry! Our monthly newsletter provides the latest news, information and events in the world of IT. We’re here to keep you updated! Sign up today at campaign.bcs.org/bcs-supporter.  If you would just like to be added to the friends of the Open Source SG mailing list, then please send an email to ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk with subscribe in the subject.  You can unsubscribe at any time by emailing unsubscribe-ossgnonmem@lists.bcs.uk.
The videos of the meeting are online here.

Q&A with Olof Kindgren, creator of SERV

Olof Kindgren, FOSSi Foundation

The award-winning SERV is the world’s smallest RISC-V CPU. It’s the perfect companion whenever you need a bit of computation and silicon real estate is at a premium. This presentation offers an introduction to SERV, what makes it so small and where it is and can be used. It will also take a closer look at what has happened with SERV the last year, what’s in store for the future and a couple of project ideas if YOU are looking for a a fun project.

Olof Kindgren is a senior digital design engineer working for Qamcom Research & Technology. He became actively involved with free and open source silicon through the OpenRISC project in 2011 and has since then worked on many FOSSi projects with a special interest in tools and collaborations. Notable work include the FuseSoc IP core package manager; SERV, the award-winning RISC-V CPU and SweRVolf, a reference platform for the SweRV CPU family. In 2015, he also co-founded FOSSi Foundation, a vendor-independent organization with the mission to promote and assist Open Source Silicon in academia, the industry and for hobbyists alike.

Accelerating Neural Networks using RISC-V and Open Standard Software

Charles Macfarlane, CBO, Codeplay Software

Neural Networks are foundational AI constructs for recognizing relationships in data requiring processing massive datasets in the form of tensors. Tensor processing is central to AI and machine learning applications. Algorithms such as convolutions and pooling involve running operations on matrix and vector data structures. It is these operations that can be executed efficiently on processors that are designed to allow many common operations to run in parallel across many cores, this has become a common use case for GPUs in recent years. But companies are also looking at ways to develop more specialised processors to tackle the performance challenges of modern AI applications. This presentation will explain how our team accelerated the execution of a tensor-based neural network on the RISC-V Spike simulator using open source and open standard software. We will explore how our demo application was built using the open source Eigen, SYCL-BLAS and SYCL-DNN libraries with the ResNet50 neural network commonly used for processor benchmarks.

There will be an emphasis on the open source software we use and develop to enable our software stack.

Charles is Chief Business Officer and has been with Codeplay since 2014. Charles graduated from Glasgow University with an honours degree in Electronic Systems and Microprocessor Engineering. Charles then followed a career doing ASIC chip design in GEC Plessey Semiconductors and Pioneer, applications engineering and marketing with VLSI/Philips/NXP in South France, and product marketing director with Broadcom® in Cambridge for mobile multimedia solutions used by Nokia®, Samsung® and Raspberry Pi®.

A simple extension to CV32E40P to accelerate AI inference

Veronia Iskandar, TU Dresden
William Jones, Head of AI and Machine Learning, Embecosm

We present the development of a simple ISA extension to the Open Hardware Group’s CV32E40P core, extending earlier work from the University of Southampton (see the presentation to the London RISC-V meetup earlier this year). We are creating a physical realization on the Nexys-A7 FPGA board, with much of the work completed under the 2021 Google Summer of Code program. We add a subset of just 8 instructions from the V extension to the Open Hardware Group CV32E0P core. The CV32E40P features an Auxiliary Processing Unit (APU) interface. This follows a subset of the OBI interface used to communicate with system memory. We use this interface for the accelerator. Several modifications were required to the core RTL in order to better support the architecture of the accelerator, primarily in regards to multi-cycle instructions. The accelerator and core RTL are then taken through the stages of FPGA development, starting from bitstream generation to debugging binary files on the FPGA. The result is a small RV32 core which speeds up the standard TinyMLPerf benchmark more than 5-fold. An important result for those looking to accelerate low energy AI inference at the edge and a free and open reference code base for others wishing to build on this work.  In this talk we will give a status update on the project.

Veronia Iskandar is a PhD candidate in Computer Science in the Adaptive Dynamic Systems (ADS) chair at the Technical University in Dresden, Germany, since March 2020. Before joining the ADS research group, she studied Computer and Systems Engineering at Ain Shams University in Egypt where she received her Bachelor degree in 2013 and her Master degree in 2018. Her current research interests include hardware/software co-design, architectures for 3D chips, and efficient memory systems.

William Jones has a research background in computational neuroscience, with a focus on artificial neural networks and machine learning techniques. He leads Embecosm’s AI team, working on applying these machine learning and AI techniques to Embecosm’s domains of interest. Dr Jones completed his PhD at the University of Kent on the subject of computational models of perception.