Linux Foundation held their annual Embedded Linux Conference (ELC) at the beginning of May. Linaro had many speakers at this event covering sessions with topics including “Android without Java”, “Improving performance of key external projects used in Android”, “Debugging – Linux Kernel testing”, “What’s going on with SPI”, “Kernel USB gadget configsfs Interface” and a talk that I gave titled “Fear and Loathing in the media transfer protocol”.
ELC was an intense event as would be expected with companies from all strands of things Linux Embedded meeting up to define the state of the embedded Linux world and direction forward for the industry.
The big takeaway from the conference is always the variety of things Linux that you find. I usually spend my days with a set of representative, and often mass-produced, ARM systems and GPIO and pin control-related device drivers, this year however, ELC exposed me to things like special-purpose Linux embedded in heat sensor cameras that are only sold in the 100s worldwide. Also very unfamiliar systems like the Kalrays MPPA 256 manycore SoC with 256 individual processing cores and robotic applications of Linux struck me as especially different this year.
Among the most Linaro-relevant meetings were the BoFs (Birds of a feather sessions) where we discussed things like the Qualcomm MSM upstream efforts and device tree maintenance. There was even a separate seminar on how to go about validating device trees. People from companies like SONY would discuss bugs in my subsystem and send me patches, normally fixing them from their hotel rooms.
Overall this was a most intense event, and it was rather nice that we would split up at lunch and dine in downtown San Jose – I found a vegan restaurant where I would hang out with my non-carnivore friends and we formed a temporary social circle.
I have attended ELC in the Bay Area every year since 2008 and plan to continue to do so, since it is always revitalizing.