Scionova @ FOSDEM

The yearly FOSDEM conference was held during 4-5th of February in Brussels Belgium and Scionova was attending.

A few of our engineers flew down on Friday afternoon and participated in person during both of the conference days (tip: if you can’t participate in person for this great event, all presentations are streamed live during the conference as well as being recorded and uploaded online for anyone to watch afterwards, see:

Fosdem 2017

The conference covers literally everything FOSS (Free and open-source software) and naturally the amount of topics and presentations to choose from are huge. (Scionova engineers participated in some 30+ sessions). Some short summaries of our cherry picked favourites can be read below:

Kubernetes on the road to GIFFE
Very good Keynote about the Kubernetes tool. Kubernetes is a popular and powerful tool to deploy, manage, monitor and scale “containerized” applications or simply containers. The keynote provided a brief introduction to the tool, its capabilities and also the development plan for upcoming features. One reason why the presentation was very appreciated is probably due to the fact that it was presented in way that made Kubernetes fulfil all the properties you would expect from a “cloud”. The “cloud” part was a topic that came back during many sessions and if it is not already obvious, the backend/cloud plays a very important role when we are talking about the “Internet of Things” and providing connectivity to all kinds of devices and items.

On the way to a FOSS platform for cloud based IOT solution
Another good presentation related to both cloud and IOT. The title for the presentation contains quite a few buzzwords, but it is in no way incorrect. Dr Steffen Evers provided a very nice overview of the state of the “Eclipse IOT project”, which simplified could be described more as a collection or ecosystem of projects related to IOT rather than one unified project. Many of the projects incorporated seem to be in good shape, have an active community as well as commercial backing and provide interesting alternatives when designing systems for IOT.

A cool presentation about JerryScript, which is a JavaScript engine, designed for very resource constrained devices. It started with a basic introduction to the project, provided some motivation behind the idea of running JavaScript in embedded devices instead of doing development in a more hardware centric language like C. Quite some time of the presentation was spent on providing metrics for performance/memory footprint/ECMAscript compliance etc. All in all it was a really good presentation about a cool project which seem to achieve a lot in terms of performance, portability, compliance and footprint.

How to fix Usually Slightly Broken (USB) device devices and drivers
More or less brilliant presentation about USB technology, drivers and debugging. Everybody knows that USB is plug&play since a long time ago? Well not quite, the presentation went through the USB technology in more detail describing necessary concepts about endpoints, types, interfaces and classes. The introduction was followed by some more details about USB drivers and how the Linux Kernel manages to find and use the correct drivers for a certain device. The presentation ended by describing the debugging parts in more detail, both the part where many USB devices does not necessarily do and behave as they should and also how to log and analyze the communication with the device.

Make sure to tune in or visit next year’s event in person as the amount of interesting topics, projects and people is simply great!

World-class WiFi and networking competence

We at Scionova are very happy to announce that Ta-Chien Lin have chosen to join our team. Ta is an experienced software architect within wireless communication. Ta will strengthen Scionovas and our customers competence within many areas, such as WiFi, networking, Linux and security.  Ta has a long career working with Wireless infrastructure solutions in Sunnyvale, CA. Ta will initially contribute in building a competitive connectivity platform for one of our automotive customers.


Linux and automotive conference


The 28th to 31st of January we at Scionova will host and participate in a conference having focus on automotive and embedded Linux. We are exited to be able to share our knowledge and to learn more within these areas. We think this is key areas for our customers future success.

Main focus will be:

  • Operating systems and architecture trends in the automotive world
  • Vehicle communication trends
  • Connectivity trends in in-vehicle infotainment
  • Cooperative ITS, vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I)
  • Embedded Linux – communication stacks, audio management, booting, IPC, virtualization and emulation

Higher speed, mesh networking and longer range

The Bluetooth technology has been around for a long time but still adds important innovations. The Bluetooth SIG recently announced updates that will include longer range, higher speeds and mesh networking. This is a significant addition to Bluetooth and makes Bluetooth a very strong candidate for Internet of Things (IoT) applications such as smart home, industrial automation, location-based services and smart infrastructure. See more at: Bluetooth Technology to Gain Longer Range, Faster Speed, and Mesh Networking in 2016

Scionova exhibits at DatE-IT

Scionova will be present at DatE-IT 2015 at November 12, Chalmers University. If you are interested in Wireless communication and want to be part of the latest technology development this is a good opportunity to meet us and discuss. We also look forward to tell why Scionova is a great working place. Among others you will meet our most recent graduates from Chalmers University, Erik Dahlgren and Johannes Jansson.

Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) – Challenges

We have been benefiting from land transportation systems in many sectors of our everyday life at the cost of some severe consequences on the environment and society. It has gotten worst over the years, especially in developing countries, due to the continuous population growth, urbanization and increasing traffic volumes. Some serious actions have to be taken to make the mobility smarter with reduced environmental implications.

Introduction of information and communication technologies (ICT) into the transportation systems has made them intelligent, which can transform the mobility in ways that have never been possible before. ICT based intelligent transportation systems (ITS) promise smarter mobility affecting the quality of human life directly in terms of comfort, efficiency and safety.

Among all, one of the main focus areas of ITS is travelers’ safety where it can certainly make dramatic improvements by saving 90% of the car accidents. It is worth mentioning that around 1.4 million people die in road accidents per year and the numbers are growing each year. Among these 50% are vulnerable road users according to world health organization, report published in 2004.

Achieving anticipated road safety using ITS is not an easy task. There are a number of technical, legislative, economic and social challenges that need to be solved before the technology is introduced to the people as it involves risks for life and stakes, e.g., Who should be blamed when a car crashes into a person or property when it is equipped with intersection or rear-end collision avoidance system or it has autonomous drive where some of the controls have been taken from the driver? Answer is not very straight forward!

Before we get into details we must first understand what the main contributing factors are to achieve road safety. It depends on road design, traffic control systems, vehicle-design and networking, ICT applied to road traffic safety, and human system integration. Considering all these factors together with the above mentioned challenges in a systematic manner require a lot of consideration and efforts.

Other challenges include security including cyber security (what if someone jam radio signals), how to manage big data, to what extent automation will be required, what kind of new methods needs to be adopted to deliver real-rime information to the travelers, backward compatibility, partnership with Industry, user confidence, and standardization of technology. Proper considerations are needed to find appropriate solutions to these challenges before giving a green signal to adopt such a safety critical technology.

The department of transportation (US-DOT) and NHTSA in the US, ETSI TC-ITS and C2C-CC in the EU and Japanese govt. have taken several initiatives to solve these challenges. One of the recent efforts is by US-DOT with the University of Michigan to address these challenges. They have announced an ITS strategic-plan that takes into account all the factors and provide a guideline to enable the deployment of ITS.

Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) – An overview

Intelligent transportation systems (ITS), which rely upon cooperative communication between vehicles, have a potential to ensure active road safety, driving comfort and improved traffic efficiency. Typically, cooperative communication is enabled with the help of two communication modes; first, infrastructure or network assisted mode that is vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communications, and second, ad hoc multi-hop broadcast mode that is vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications. Selection of each of these modes is done in a hybrid way depending upon the requirements from the target application. There are several candidate communication technologies and protocols, which can be used, such as IEEE 802.11p, LTE, WiFi and possibly 5G systems.

For safety related applications requirements on latency and reliability are very strict, thus IEEE802.11p based direct V2V communications is more suitable candidate. Several organizations are working towards the standardization and assessment of the readiness of technology  such US Department of Transportation’s (US-DOT), National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) in the US, ETSI technical committee for ITS and Car-to-Car communication consortium in the EU and IEEE worldwide. However, it is yet to be decided when this technology should be made available for public use.

The organizations such as US-DOT and ETSI have agreed to follow a phased development approach. First phase in this approach involves initial deployment of basic, very simple and non-complex day one warning applications, e.g., collision avoidance warnings, emergency break warning, slippery road conditions warning, and road works warning etc. It is because the benefits of these applications can be achieved even with less penetration rate. However, later phases in the cooperative ITS deployment involve advanced warning services, autonomous drive and automated assistance for all kinds of traffic in all situation. There are a number of associated challenges in each of these deployment phases, some of them have been addressed but many still need to be solved. ITS applications and their associated challenges remains the topic of our future blog posts.

 Interesting links:

EU Commission – Cars that talk
ETSI – Intelligent Transportation Systems


What is 5G?

Telecom networks over the past few decades have witnessed several cellular generation changes such as 1G (Nordic Mobile Telephone), 2G (GSM), 3G (IMT-200 and UMTS), and 4G (LTE), which have transformed the whole mobile communication paradigm from the very basic voice service into very complex interconnected networks. Today, telecom networks support not only the voice and video services but a range of complex mobile communication services, which connect millions of users, and billions of devices around the globe. By 2020, it is estimated that the number of subscribers will reach 9 billion, and there will be over 80 billion connected devices. This continuous growth in the number of subscribers, devices, services, and use cases, given that a corresponding impact on cost or carbon footprint is low, have encouraged the telecom industry to do further research to develop even more efficient networks, i.e., 5G.

So, 5G is simply a next chapter or cellular generation to design more advanced, innovative and efficient telecom networks that meet these futuristic demands. These networks will be smart enough to support communication not only person-to-person but anything-to-anything and anywhere; such that people, objects and things whether mobile or fixed are part of an all-connected system.

In comparison with today’s system following are the estimated performance levels to achieve such an all-connected 5G system,

  • 1000x increased in mobile data volume
  • 10x-100x increased number of connect devices
  • 10x-100x high data rates
  • 5x lower latency
  • 10x improved battery life for low power devices

You must be wondering, if it is achievable or not? If yes, how can we get there?

We keep this discussion for our next blog. So stay tuned!

Interesting links:

Ericsson-What is 5G?