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Posts Tagged ‘intel’

Intel Cancels Low Cost Atom Broxton & SoFia SoCs

April 30th, 2016 2 comments

Intel has recently announced it would lay off 11% of its workforce, and has now decided to kill plans for Atom Broxton, successor of Intel Cherry Trail processor, as well as low cost SoFia smartphone SoCs. That’s not really surprising as Intel was reported to have very small margins, or even to subsidy, low cost Intel based smartphones, and mini PCs. Rockchip/Intel Sofia SoC has never been popular with only a handful of smartphones and tablets launched in the last year.

Intel_Atom_Broxton_Sofia_KilledNevertheless, we’ve had it good with $70 Bay Trail TV sticks, and $85 Cherry Trail mini PCs, and Intel is still manufacturing and selling those parts. But in the future, it might not be possible to buy sub $100 mini PCs or tablets with the latest Intel processors, as the company is now focusing on higher margin processors with Intel Core M and Apollo Lake (succeeding Braswell).

More details and in-depth analysis of the announcement can be found on Liliputing and Anandtech.

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Categories: Intel Atom Tags: intel, smartphone, sofia

Mini PCs and Cloudbooks Powered by Intel Apollo Lake Pentium and Celeron Processors, Successors of Braswell SoCs, are Expected in H2 2016

April 16th, 2016 3 comments

Intel released a presentation entitled “Design Considerations and Reference Designs for Entry, Value and Mainstream PCs” at IDF 2016 Shenzhen, explaining the company vision about low power laptops and mini PCs. At the core of those devices will be “Apollo Lake” Pentium and Celeron Processors with 6 to 10W TDP replacing Braswell processors with better CPU and graphics performance, lower power consumption, and low overall BoM cost.

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Beside mini PCs, the processors will also find their way into what Intel calls Cloudbooks, some sort of laptops with 2 to 4GB RAM, 32 to 64GB storage, no hard drive, and displays whose size ranges from 11.6″ to 14″. So it looks like Cloudbooks may be the new Netbooks, with better performance and larger displays.

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Click to Enlarge

Cost savings on the mainboard are achieved thanks to the integration of many features (Signal Processor, SD Card bridge chip, Spead Spectrum Clock…), low power consumption leading to smaller batteries, the ability to load the BIOS/UEFI to the eMMC instead of an SPI flash, etc…

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

The savings appear to be small, but bear in mind that those are for the bills of materials, so the retail price savings may be two to three times higher.

Intel also unveiled a Cloudbook reference design with the complete BoM which show what we may expect later this year, as OEM/ODM manufacturers are likely to take the easy way at first, by simply copying Intel reference design, possibly by removing some of the features in the processor.Apollo_Lake_Reference_Design_BoM_Part1

Apollo_Lake_Reference_Design_BoM_Part2That means Apollo Lake Cloudbooks with a 11.6″ full HD display, 32 to 64 GB storage, 4GB RAM, 802.11ac WiFi , and USB type C connector should be expected in the second part of 2016.

Apollo_Lake_CPU_Module

Click to Enlarge

Via Liliputing and some Google searches…

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Intel Compute Stick STK2mv64CC Powered by Core m5-6Y57 vPro Processor is Up for Pre-order for $485

April 16th, 2016 4 comments

Intel announced five new Computer Sticks at the beginning of the year, and so far 4 have been launched, and the Intel Core m3 have been benchmarked showing about to double the performance compared to the Cherry Trail versions, but the most powerful model based on Core m5 had yet to be launched. The news is that if you have some spare cash, you can now pre-order Intel Compute Stick STK2mv64CC based on Core m5-6Y57 vPro processor for $485 on Amazon US with shipping scheduled for May 12, 2016.

STK2mv64CC

That’s quite a steep price, so let’s see what you’d get for $500:

  • SoC – Intel Core m5-6Y57 vPro dual core/four thread processor @ 1.1 GHz/2.8GHz with Intel HD Graphics 515 @ 300MHz/900Mhz (4.5 W TDP, configurable to 3.5W and 7W)
  • System Memory – 4 GB DDR3L @ 1833MHz dual channel memory
  • Storage – 64 GB eMMC + micro SDXC v3.0 slot with UHS I-Support up to 128GB
  • Video & Audio Output – HDMI 1.4b with multi-channel audio output
  • Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi up to 867 Mbps and Bluetooth 4.2 (via Intel Dual Band Wireless AC 8260)
  • USB – 1x USB 3.0 port, and 2x USB 3.0 ports on power adapter.
  • Misc – Power button, security notch, TPM (STK2MV64CC  and STK2M364CC)
  • Power Supply – 5V/4A via USB type C power port
  • Dimensions – 114 mm x 38 mm x 12 mm

STK2mv64CC is sold with operating system, and ships with the 5V/4A power supply (which also includes 2x USB 3.0 ports), and an HDMI extension cable. Performance appears to be  only a little better compared to Core m3-6Y30 used in STK2M3W64CC (~$400 with Windows 10, ~$330 without), but the Core m5 processor supports Intel Vpro technology which makes it more suitable for the enterprise.

Thanks to Raymond for the tip.

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Categories: Hardware, Intel Core M Tags: intel, mini-pc, skylake

Intel Showcases Core m Compute Stick Prototype with RealSense Camera at IDF 2016 Shenzhen

April 15th, 2016 4 comments

Intel appears to be all-in with their Realsense technology at IDF 2016 Shenzhen, as together with RealSense Robotic Development Kit, the company is showcasing an Intel Core m “Skylake” TV Stick, based on similar hardware as STK2MV64CC Compute Stick with a Core m3 or m5 vPro processor, but adding a Realsense F200 3D depth camera and an array of microphones.

Intel_RealSense_TV_StickThe full specifications are not available, but we do know the stick also comes with one USB 3.0 ports, and a yellow USB 2.0 port which should be always-on, a micro USB port for power, and a micro HDMI port to connect the your TV. The stick is supposed to be placed on top of your TV so you’d then be able to control the user interface, play games, etc… using gestures, with potentially other applications made possible thanks to 3D depth sensing such as Windows Hello which allows you to sign-in without password.

Intel_Realsense_TV_Stick_USB_3.0_micro_USB_HDMINotebookItalia also reports that while Core m TV stick design where reserves to Intel’s own use so far, the company will release then so that OEM/ODM manufacturers can start offering their own Skylake TV sticks.

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Intel RealSense Robotic Development Kit Features Atom x5 UP Board, Realsense R200 Depth Camera

April 14th, 2016 6 comments

An Intel Developer Forum is currently taking place in Shenzhen, China, which may explains why we have several Intel products announcements targeting developers such as the launch of Quark D2000 development board. Another product for makers and developers is Intel RealSense Robotic Development Kit combining Raspberry Pi like UP Board powered by Intel Atom x5-Z8350 processor with Intel RealSense camera (R200) in order to bring 3D / depth vision to robots.

Click to Enlarge

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UP Board specifications have changed a little as the processor is now Z8350 instead of Z8300, and they now have a version with 4GB RAM used in the kit:

  • SoC – Intel Atom x5-Z8350 “Cherry Trail” quad core processor @ 1.44 GHz (Burst frequency: 1.92 GHz) with Intel Gen8 HD graphics
  • System Memory –  4GB DDR3L-1600
  • Storage – 32 GB eMMC flash
  • Video Output / Display – HDMI 1.4b, MIPI DSI/eDP interface
  • Audio I/O – HDMI, I2S
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet
  • USB – 4x USB 2.0 host ports, 2x USB 2.0 pin header, 1x micro USB 3.0 port
  • Camera – MIPI CSI up to 4MP
  • Expansion – 40-pin Raspberry Pi compatible header
  • Misc – Power button, RTC
  • Power Supply – 5V/3A via 5.5/2.1mm jack
  • Dimensions – 85.60 x 56.50 mm

The board will ships with Ubuntu Linux, but other operating systems such as Windows 10 and other Linux distributors are also supported. One of the USB 3.0 port is used to interface with R200 3D depth camera with the following features:

  • Depth Range – Up to 3-4 meters indoors, longer range outdoors
  • Depth / Infrared: 640 x480 resolution at 60 FPS
  • RGB: 1080p at 30 FPS
  • USB 3.0 port (required on host)
  • Dimensions – 130 mm x 20 mm x 7 mm

I could not find much information about the software side, but I assume this is likely supported by RealSense SDK.

The development kit is up for pre-order for $249.99 for resident of the United States, Canada, China, EU, and Japan only, and is expected to ship in June 2016. More details are available in the devkit page.

Thanks to Roi for the tip.

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Intel Launches $15 Quark D2000 Arduino Compatible Board

April 14th, 2016 2 comments

Intel introduces three new Quark Micro-controllers last year, and I already experimented with Intel System Studio tools, quite similar to the Arduino IDE, and designed for hardware such as Intel Quark D1000 Customer Reference Board. So far the company had not released any boards available to the general public, but this has now changed since they’ve launched the “Intel Quark Microcontroller Developer Kit D2000”.

Intel_Quark_MCU_D2000_Development_Platform

Intel Quark D2000 development board specifications:

  • MCU – Intel Quark D2000 32-bit processor Intel Pentium x86-compatible without x87 FPU @ 32 MHz with 8 KB SRAM, 32 KB instruction flash, 8 KB OTP flash and 4 KB OTP data flash
  • USB – 1x micro USB (JTAG) for power and programming/debugging
  • Sensors – 6-axis Accelerometer / magnetometer with temperature sensor (Bosch Sensortec BCM150)
  • Expansion options:
    • Arduino Uno compatible SIL sockets (3.3V IO only)
    • Booster pack compatible SIL headers (3.3V IO only)
  • Misc – Reset and user buttons, jumpers, RTC
  • Power Supply
    • External (2.5V – 5V) DC input via screw terminal
    • USB power (5V) via debug port
    • Coin cell battery (type CR2032 not supplied)
  • Dimensions – 8.4 x 5.7 cm
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Click to Enlarge

The board can also be developed with Intel System Studio for Microcontrollers IDE with support for GCC 5.2.1, Intel-enhanced GDB 7.9, Integrated Performance Primitives for Microcontrollers 1.0, Floating Point Emulation library, sample applications, a BSP for the Intel Quark Microcontroller Software Interface (Intel QMSI)
OpenOCD 0.8.0, TinyCrypt 0.1.0, Python 2.7.10, and more. The IDE works in Linux 64-bit (Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, and Fedora 21), and Windows 7/8.1/10 64-bit. All manufacturing and hardware design files have been released (Cadence Allegro), and documentation includes hardware and user’s guides.

The board can be purchased for $14.95 on Mouser, and you can visit Intel Quark Microcontroller D2000 product page for more details about the MCU and the development board, including all documentation.

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Intel Core m3 Skylake Compute Stick Benchmarked, Tested with Ubuntu 16.04 and Chromium OS

March 29th, 2016 4 comments

Intel unveiled five new Compute Sticks for 2016, with two Cherry Trail models, and three Skylake Core M models namely STK2M3W64CC and STK2MV64CC based on Intel Core m3-6Y30 processor, as well as STK2MV64CC with a more powerful Core m5-6Y57 vPRO processor. Ian Morrison (Linuxium) managed to get an early sample of STK2M3W64CC running Windows 10 on 4GB RAM and 64GB storage, and posted some benchmarks, as well as results of his experimentations with Ubuntu and Chrome OS in the Intel section of G+ MINI PCs community and his own website.

Intel_Compute_Stick_Skylake

He started by running some standard benchmarks in Windows 10 including CrystalDiskMark (storage performance), Passmark8, and 3DMark, and while the storage performance is underwhelming, the processor is clearly and noticeably faster than Braswell, and Cherry Trail processors in terms of CPU and GPU performance based on comparisons with  Tronsmart Ara X5 (x5-Z8300), Kangaroo Mobile Desktop (x5-Z8500), Voyo V3 (x7-Z8700), and Intel Braswell based  Intel NUC5CPYB/H NUC, and MINIX NGC-1.

Benchmarks vs Bay Trail and Cherry Trail Platforms

Benchmarks vs Bay Trail and Cherry Trail Platforms

The results of 3DMark Ice Storm 1.2 benchmark were divided by 20 for a more readable chart.

Ubuntu 16.04 on - Click to Enlarge

Ubuntu 16.04 on STK2M3W64CC Compute Stick  – Click to Enlarge

He also booted Ubuntu 16.04 daily build from micro SD card and an ISO image from Windows 10, and everything worked, including WiFi and HDMI audio, contrary to lower cost platforms. Chromium OS could also be booted from an ISO located in the eMMC in the Windows 10 partition.

Ian also gave an historical perspective of the progress made since the first HDMI TV stick (MK802) launched four years ago, by comparing the Phoronix benchmarks in Ubuntu 12.04 for MK802+ (Allwinner A10 Cortex A8 processor) and Ubuntu 16.04 for the latest Intel Compute Stick.

MK802_vs_Intel_Compute_StickMost results show at least 10 times more performance, and some up to 60 times faster (OpenSSL may use some hardware acceleration in the Intel platform), but  nobody should be surprised that a $399 device in 2016 performs way better than a $70 in 2012.

You can see how Ubuntu 16.04 performs in STK2M3W64CC – especially app loading times – in the video below.

STK2M364CC,  the version with Windows 10, should sell for $399,  and STK2m364CC, the one without OS, is shown for $366.85 on a US site. Neither are listed on Amazon US or Newegg yet, but you might be able to find a local reseller.

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Embedded Linux Conference 2016 and OpenIoT Summit 2016 Schedule

March 4th, 2016 2 comments

The Embedded Linux Conference 2016 and the OpenIoT summit 2016 will take place on April 4 – 6, 2016 in San Diego, California, and over 800 attended will meet including kernel & system developers, userspace developers, and product vendors. The Linux Foundation has recently published the schedule, so I’ve had a look at some of the talks, and designed my own virtual schedule to find out more the current development focus although I won’t attend.

Embedded_Linux_Conference_2016Monday April 4

  • 10:40am – 11:30am – Linux Connectivity for IoT by Marcel Holtmann, Intel OTC

There are many connectivity solutions that available for IoT. For example Bluetooth Low Energy, 802.15.4, Zigbee, OIC, Thread and others. This presentation will provide and overview of the existing technology and upcoming standard and how they tie into the Linux kernel and its ecosystem.

  • 11:40 – 12:30 – BoF: kernelci.org: A Million Kernel Boots and Counting by Kevin Hilman, BayLibre

The kernelci.org project is currently over 1500 kernel boot tests per day for upstream kernels on a wide variety of hardware. This BoF will provide a very brief overview of kernelci.org and then be a forum for discussion and feature requests, how to participate and next steps.

  • 14:00 – 14:50 – Hello, Brillo by Dave Smith, NewCircle

Brillo is Google’s latest embedded offering, based on Android, intended for low-power devices in the IoT market. But what does “based on Android” really mean? In this session, we will compare the Brillo stack to Android, examining what has been added as well as removed. You will learn how Google attempts to bring secure solutions to IoT using Brillo and Weave—Google’s IoT connectivity protocol. We will also discuss the current status of user space application development on the platform.

  • 15:00 – 15:50 – Reducing the Memory Footprint of Android by Bernhard Rosenkränzer, Linaro

The Android team inside the Linaro Mobile Group has been working on reducing the memory footprint of the Android system – cutting around 70 MB off the memory used by a newly booted AOSP build on Nexus 7.

This talk describes what techniques we have used to save memory without having too much of a negative impact on performance.

  • 16:10 – 17:00 – Bringing Display and 3D to the C.H.I.P Computer by Maxime Ripard, Free Electrons

Every modern multimedia-oriented ARM SoC usually has a bunch of display controllers, to drive a screen or an LCD panel, and a GPU, to provide 3D acceleration. The framework of choice to support these controllers in Linux is the DRM subsystem.

This talk will walk through the DRM stack, the architecture of a DRM/KMS driver and the interaction between the display and GPU drivers. The presentation is based on the work we have done to develop a DRM driver for the Allwinner SoCs display controller, as part of enabling the C.H.I.P platform with the upstream Linux kernel. The work done to make the ARM Mali OpenGL driver work on top of a mainline DRM/KMS driver will also be detailed.

  • 17:10 – 18:00 – Bluetooth on Modern Linux by Szymon Janc

This presentation will help audience to better understand how Linux supports fast changing and evolving technology as Bluetooth. It will provide comprehensive guide on BlueZ 5 Bluetooth stack architecture demystifying transition from BlueZ 4 systems. This includes integration with external components like PulseAudio or NetworkManager. Audience will also have good overview of how Bluetooth on Linux can help building Internet of Things by supporting bleeding edge features like LE Connection Oriented Channels, 6LowPAN, LE Secure Connections and more.

  • 18:10 – 19:00 – BoF: Device Tree by Frank Rowand

The Linux kernel Device Tree continues to evolve. The presentation portion of the BoF will include improvements completed over the last year, the status of partially completed projects, and plans for the coming year. Suggestions for changes and improvements to Device Tree will be solicited from the participants. Come meet Device Tree maintainers and contributors.

Please bring questions, complaints, solutions, reports of what is not working for you, and wish-lists.

Tuesday April 5

  • 9:00 – 9:50 – Implementing Miniature Smart Home by Constantin Musca, Intel

We are at the beginning of a new era of technologies computing where almost every device communicates with each other or communicates with their environment. It is about the so called Internet of things (IoT).

A major line of investigation is the smart home and the benefits of having one and what it takes to make a home “smart”. These solutions are to make life easier and free more time. How cool is to be able to control the temperature, lights, music or garage door remotely.

The smart house system runs on a Brillo OS device which exposes standard peripherals’ APIs and can be controlled through the standard Weave interface using your Google account with commands like: open_garaje_door, set_living_temperature, play_song or close_curtains.

For the moment we only implemented this solution on a miniature house, but we are looking forward to extend it to a larger scale and use it in real

I’ve found a demo of the project, and they’ve actually used a house as big as “standard” apartment… Maybe it’s only considered miniature if you live in the US…

  • 10:00 – 10:50 – Developing a Standard Interface for Drones by Tully Foote, Open Source Robotics Foundation

With the proliferation of a huge variety of drones it is becoming more important to develop standard interfaces which can enable software to be reused across whole classes of airframes. In his work on ROS (the Robot Operating System), Tully Foote has been actively involved in many standard interface proposals and refinements and is the maintainer of many of the core message definitions. In this talk he will review the important aspects of designing standard interfaces using examples from indoor robotics, autonomous cars, and more. The talk will conclude with a proposed standard interface for drones with the hope of sparking further discussion in the greater drone community.

  • 11:20 – 12:10 – Linux Power Management Optimization on the Nvidia Jetson Platform by Merlin Friesen, Golden Gate Research

Powerful cellular System on Chip (SoC) Application Processors with multiple ARM cores and a vast array of peripherals are now readily available for non cellular applications and are finding use in areas such as vision processing, robotics and drones. These devices, due to their use in mobile smart phones and tablets, have highly optimized power management features and come with Linux kernels that complement the hardware.

The Linux based Nvidia Jetson platform is used in this presentation to give developers a hands on overview of SoC power management and techniques they can use to monitor and improve power consumption in their own designs.

  • 14:00 – 14:50 – libiio – Access to Sensor Devices Made Easy by Lars-Peter Clausen, Analog Devices

The Linux IIO (Industrial IO) framework is tasked with handling configuration and data aggregation from and to all sorts of sensors and data converters including ADCs, DACs, temperature sensors, accelerators, chemical analysis, light sensors, lifestyle sensor and many more. libiio is a system library hides the low-level details of the IIO kernel ABI and provides a simple yet complete programming interface. It implements functionality often required by applications which want to access IIO sensor devices.

This presentation will give an introduction to the core concepts of libiio, it’s API and how it can be used in applications to access sensor devices, enabling attendees to develop their own applications being able to access sensor devices fast and efficiently. In addition it will discuss the existing infrastructure and tools that have been built around libiio.

  • 15:00 – 15:50 – Communication for IoT: MQTT Development and Integration by Rodrigo Chiossi, Intel

MQTT is a lightweight publish/subscribe protocol intended for small sensors and mobile devices. It is designed to work with high-latency and unreliable networks and is the protocol of choice of many IoT solutions, such as IBM Bluemix and Amazon AWS IoT. MQTT is also one of the communication protocols of the Soletta Project, which uses Mosquitto, a compact open source implementation of MQTT, as backend.

This technical talk is focused on the integration between Mosquitto and Soletta. The Soletta MQTT API will be presented along with the process of integrating Mosquitto into Soletta’s mainloop. We then discuss the main limitations and problems of this process, and present the solutions applied. Lastly, we take a look at live demos of Soletta MQTT working with IBM Bluemix and Amazon AWS, with code snippets and development guidelines for those platforms.

Wednesday April 6

  • 9:00 – 9:50 – Static Code Checking in the Linux Kernel by Arnd Bergmann, Linaro

As a maintainer of the arm-soc tree, Arnd is responsible for the quality of a lot of new code that gets merged each release. His dirty secret is that he never runs any of it on real hardware, but that makes static compile-time checking at even more important.

In this presentation, Arnd shows his setup for finding and fixing bugs, and gives an overview of many of the available tools, including kernelc, sparse, coccinelle, clang, checkpatch and coverity.

  • 10:00 – 10:50 – HDMI CEC: What? Why? How?  by Hans Verkuil, Cisco Systems Norway

The HDMI connector features a CEC (Consumer Electronics Control) pin that allows connected devices to detect and control one another. This talk describes what CEC is, why you would want to implement support for it, and how you can use a new kernel framework and API to support this HDMI feature.

This talk will include a short introduction of the upcoming CEC framework and the utilities that use it.

  • 11:05 – 11:55 – Embedded Linux 3D Sensing: Minnowboard Meets RealSense by Miguel Bernal Marin, Intel

Robots and Drones use sensing devices (like cameras, lasers range-finders, ultrasonic sonars) to get information from external environment and it is used avoid obstacles or create maps. The use of 3D depth cameras helps to do these task easily. But the current 3D depth cameras in the market are heavy to load on a drone or the smaller doesn’t have Linux support. In this presentation, Miguel will explain how to use the Intel RealSense 3D camera in a Linux environment using a Minnowboard Max, a small 3D camera that can be used in outdoors. In addition, Miguel will go into detail on how to use it using the Clear Linux Project for Intel Architecture.

  • 13:35 – 14:25 – Survey of Open Hardware 2016 by John Hawley, Intel

This is a generalized talk where we’ll generally compare, contrast and discuss various things that have happened in the last year regarding Open Hardware. In 2016 this will cover things that happened at the last OSHWA meeting, various new devices that are on the market, and generally focus on devices capable of running and operating system, and not micro-controllers.

  • 14:35 – 15:25 – Zephyr Project: An RTOS to change the face of IoT by Anas Nashif

An increasing number of developers need a scalable, real-time operating system designed specifically for small-footprint IoT devices. It needs to be affordable, easy to use and built with input from the developers using it. An open source RTOS can’t just be called “open” – it must live and breathe “the open source way.” Developers should have influence over the direction of the project and be able to impact its software and hardware architecture support. The OS should also maximize interconnectivity between other devices, contain powerful development tools and come with customizable capabilities. The Zephyr Project offers just that.

This class will give an overview of Zephyr Project. Zephyr is a small, scalable, real-time operating system designed specifically for small-footprint IoT edge devices. Its modular design allows you to create an IoT solution that meets all of your device needs, regardless of architecture. It is also embedded with powerful development tools that will, over time, enable developers to customize its capabilities.

Launched in partnership with the Linux Foundation, the Zephyr project is a truly open source solution focused on empowering community development. The goal of Zephyr is to allow commercial and open source developers alike to define and develop IoT solutions best suited for their needs.

There are so many other interested talks that I did not mention in my list, but that’s what happens when you do a schedule.

You can register online to attend both Embedded Linux Conference and OpenIOT Summit 2016. The fees are as follows:

  • Early Registration Fee – US$550 through February 21, 2016
  • Standard Registration Fee – US$650 through March 13, 2016
  • Late Registration Fee – US$850 after March 14, 2015
  • Student Registration Fee – US$175
  • Hobbyist Registration Fee – US$175. You’ll need to contact events [at] linuxfoundation.org to receive a discount code, and you must pay for the fee yourself.

 

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