MECO'2017 Speakers:

Prof. Roberto Giorgi, Dept. of Information Engineering, University of Siena, Italy

AXIOM: A 64-bit Reconfigurable Hardware/Software Platform for Scalable Embedded Computing


Summary: The AXIOM platform is built with, in mind, the possibility of executing an application not only on a single board but also, in a distributed fashion, on multiple boards. While this is a classic problem with some solutions in the case of no constraints, it becomes interesting for embedded computing and cyber-physical systems where we aim to accelerate applications while maintaining energy efficency and also easy programmability.

Currently, the AXIOM platform consists of a custom board based on the Xilinx Zynq Ultrascale+ ZU9EG which incorporates the largest FPGA avaialable on that System-on-Chip at the moment, four 64-bit ARM cores and two 32-bit ARM cores, up to 32GiB of main memory and several 12.5Gbit/s tranceivers. We relyed on this hardware to develop our novel concept, which exploits
dataflow execution in multiple ways for programs that are written in an OpenMP extension, known as OmpSs.

A key aspect relates to the adopted memory consistency model, which allows the programmer to focus on aspects other than taking care of the communication among nodes. The lower level of our communication stack relies on a fast interconnect based on inexpensive USB-C type connectors rather than on other proprietary interfaces. The reconfigurable logic provides a complete Network Interface Card (NIC) to allow fast routing of the data and code of the system.

We envision many applications for this platform although we are currently focused on developing two basic scenarios based on the Smart-Home and on Smart-Videosurveillance.

Our initial results confirm good scalability of the platform and a speed-up compared to other programming models such as Cilk and OpenMPI.

Short CV. Roberto Giorgi is an Associate Professor at Dept. of Information Engineering, University of Siena, Italy. He was Research Associate at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, USA. He received his PhD in Computer Engineering and his MS in Electronics Engineering, Summa cum Laude both from University of Pisa, Italy. Currently, he is the Coordinator of the European Project AXIOM. He coordinated the TERAFLUX project (8.5Meuro cost, 2010-2014, 11 partners) in the area of Future and Emerging Technologies for Teradevice Computing. He is Application leader in the ERA project (Embedded Reconfigurable Architectures), member of the HiPEAC Network of Excellence (High Performance Embedded-system Architecture and Compilation). He was also Deputy Steering Committee in the HiPEAC, participated to SARC (Scalable ARChitectures) and attracted more than 2 Million Euro of Research Funding to the University of Siena in the last decade. He took part in ChARM project, developing software for performance evaluation of ARM-processor based embedded systems with cache memory. He has been IEEE Judge for the IEEE-CSIDC (Computer Society International Design Competition). He led the project "Bluesign Translator", which received a 5th worldwide prize by IEEE and top companies, and received the FORUM-P.A. prize by the Italian Ministry of Technological and Scientific Innovation, as absolute winner in the category of "actions for the social integration of disadvantaged people through ICT". He has been selected by the European Commission as an independent expert for evaluating ICT European Projects. He is co-author of more than 80 scientific papers. His current interests include Computer Architecture themes such as Embedded Systems, Multiprocessors, Memory System Performance, Workload Characterization. He is a Lifetime member of ACM and a Senior Member of the IEEE, IEEE Computer Society. 

Prof. Ervin Sejdić, Swanson School of Engineering, University of Pitssburg, USA

Can we use big data to understand functional changes in swallowing, gait and handwriting?

Summary: A biomarker is defined as a characteristic that is objectively measured and evaluated as an indicator of normal biologic processes, pathogenic processes, or pharmacologic responses to a therapeutic intervention. In this talk, I will present my efforts to develop computational biomarkers that can characterize temporal and spatial signatures (i.e., the unique patterns of moment-to-moment changes of physiologic variables under normal or pathologic conditions) and their relationship to other variables. Specifically, I will elaborate my efforts to develop computational biomarkers for detecting swallowing difficulties, gait changes and handwriting changes. These computational biomarkers are obtained by mining large data sets in order to characterize changes in the considered functional outcomes under various conditions.

Short CV. Ervin Sejdic has been eager to contribute to the advancement of scientific knowledge through carefully executed experiments and ground-breaking published work. He has co-authored over 90 publications in the last five years. In February 2016, President Obama named Dr. Sejdic as a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the United States Government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. His research interests include biomedical signal processing, gait analysis, swallowing difficulties, advanced information systems in medicine, rehabilitation engineering, assistive technologies and anticipatory medical devices. More abou Ervin and his work

Prof. Pavel V. Babayan, Ryazan State Radio Engineering University, Russia

Image analysis techniques for airborne vision system

Summary: The key element for the safety of the aircraft flights is the situational awareness of the pilot. One of the effective solutions to improve situational awareness is the usage of the vision system that performs image acquisition and analysis to obtain the important information about the obstacles or other objects around an aircraft. Last year there was a research project finished, in which the image analysis techniques for the airborne monocular vision system were developed. The technique includes the following components:
• detection of the ground landmarks;
• aerial object detection, recognition and parameters estimation;
• detection and prediction of dangerous situations, such as collisions or approaching to buildings or power lines.
The image analysis techniques are intended to be used in on-board processing devices with computational limitations. In the presentation the main results of the research project will be presented.

Short CV. Pavel V. Babayan is a head of Department of Automation and Information Technology in Control at the Ryazan State Radio Engineering University. He received his BS degree in mathematics and PhD in technical sciences from the Ryazan State Radio Engineering University in 2000 and 2005, respectively.  He is an author of more than 40 journal papers and has written four book chapters. Pavel Babayan was a winner of the support grants of the President of Russian Federation for young scientists in 2007-2008 and 2011-2012. Since 2008 Pavel Babayan is a member of the leading school of thought of Russian Federation. He is also a member of editorial board of the journal "Ryazan State Radio Engineering University bulletin". In 2011-2016 Pavel Babayan led 5 research projects in the field of image processing and analysis. His current scientific interests are pattern recognition, object extraction, object tracking, machine vision for ground and aerial vehicles. He is a member of SPIE society.


Professor Amr Sabry, Head of Computer Science, Indiana University in Bloomington, USA

Embracing the laws of Physics in the Foundations of Computation

Summary: Embedded computing bridges “abstract computing models” with the “physical world”. The laws of physics apply to both the environment and the computational model but they are heavily abstracted in models of computation. Conventional models of computation are often irreversible, sequential, non real-time, space agnostic, and are unaware of locality, energy, heat, etc. Each of these concerns is addressed in some work but they collectively do not have the place they deserve in the foundations of computation

Vitae Prof. Amr Sabry

Prof. dr Vera Marković, University of Nis, Serbia, IEEE S&M Section Chair

IEEE in Serbia and Montenegro – a 46 Year-Long History

Summary: The topic of this presentation is what is IEEE (the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers) today, its mission and vision, as well as the most important facts about this world's largest professional association in the field of engineering. After that, the focus will be on the 46 year-long history of the presence of IEEE in the former Yugoslavia region and especially on the development and current state of the IEEE Serbia and Montenegro Section.

Short CV: Dr Vera Marković is a Full Professor and head of the Department of Telecommunications of the Faculty of Electronic Engineering, University of Niš, from which she received hers´ Dipl. Eng.  (Bachelor with honours), M.Sc and Ph.D. degrees, all in Electronics Engineering. She has published a monograph, chapters in two monographs, two textbooks and about 300 scientific papers, mainly in the field of microwave technique and wireless systems. Prof. Marković is a member of several associations and societies, boards and commissions and has experience in project management and in organizing professional events. She was the editor of the leading journal of national importance „Microwave Review“ in 2005-2012. She was also the main coordinator for european programs Erasmus Mundus and Erasmus+ at the University of Niš. Currently, she is a member of HERE (Higher Education Reform Expert) team appointed by the Ministry of Education and Science. Prof. Marković has been a member of IEEE since 1992 and member of several societies (MTT-S, ComSoc, SSCS, WIE) for years. In 2005, she was awarded with a „Certificate of Recognition“ for the local MTT-S Chapter activities. She was the Secretary, Vice-Chair and Chair of the IEEE Serbia & Montenegro Section over the period 2008-2010, 2011-2014 and 2015-2016, respectively.


MECO'2017 Tutorials:

Prof. dr Veljko Milutinovic, IEEE Fellow

A DataFlow Course

DataFlow SuperComputing

This course presents the DataFlow SuperComputing paradigm, defines its advantages and sheds light on the related programming model with hands-on coding experience. DataFlow computers, compared to ControlFlow computers, offer speedups of 20 to 200 (even 2000 for some applications), and power and size reductions of up to 1/20. However, the programming paradigm is different, and has to be mastered. The course explains the paradigm of programming in space, using Maxeler (a provider of multiscale dataflow computing systems) as an example, and gives an overview of ongoing research in the field. Examples include DataEngineering, DataMining, FinancialAnalytics, ImageProcessing, etc. The course also covers advanced DataFlow issues like: Compilation, OS, and methods for speed-up maximization, using tools like WebIDE and MaxIDE. DataFlow potentials are discussed through the notions introduced by four Nobel Laureates: Richard Feynman, Ilya Prigogine, Daniel Kahneman, and Andre Geim.

Registration: FREE (but required).  Contact: Professor Budimir  Lutovac (budo@ac.me)

Location & Schedule : MECO2017 facilities, Hotel Princess, Bar, Montenegro, 3 hours, will be defined in the Programme,

Interesting Facts and Links:

A recent study from Tsinghua University in China reveals that, for Shallow Water Weather
Forecast, which is a BigData problem, on the 1U level, the Maxeler DataFlow machine is 14
times faster than the Tianhe machine. Tianhe is rated #1 on the Top 500 list of fastest computers
in the World (based on Linpack, which is a smalldata benchmark).
Maxeler resources: https://appgallery.maxeler.com and https://webide.maxeler.com

Article: Trifunovic, N., Milutinovic, V., et al, "An AppGallery for DataFlow Computing,"
       Springer Journal of Big Data,    Feb 2016.
Article: Trifunovic, N., Milutinovic, V., et al, "Paradigm Shift in BigData SuperComputing,"
       Springer Journal of Big Data, May 2015.
Book: Milutinovic, V., Salom, J., Trifunovic, N., Giorgi, R.,
       Guide to DataFlow Supercomputing, Springer, 2015.
Article: Jovanovic, Z., Milutinovic, V., "FPGA Accelerators for Floating-Point Matrix Multiplication,"
       The IET Computing and Digital Techniques, Vol 6., Issue 4, 2012.
       (The IET 2014 Premium Award for Computing and Digital Techniques).
Article: Flynn, M., Mencer, O., Milutinovic, V., et al, "Moving from PetaFlops to PetaData,"
       Communications of the ACM, May 2013.

Book: MultiScale DataFlow Programming, Maxeler Technologies, 2012.

About the speaker:
Prof. Veljko Milutinovic received his PhD from the University of Belgrade, spent about a decade on various faculty positions in the USA (mostly at Purdue University), and was a co-designer of the DARPAs first GaAs RISC microprocessor. Later he taught and conducted research at the University of Belgrade in Serbia, in EE and MATH. Now he serves as the Chairman of the Board of the Maxeler operation in Serbia. His research is mostly in datamining and dataflow computing, with the emphasis on algorithms and mappings of algorithms onto architectures. His co-authored paper on matrix multiplication for dataflow received "The IET Premium Award for 2014" (meaning the single best paper in IET Computing for 2012 and 2013). His paper on the research methodology was published in an ASCE journal and also received a Premium Award for 2014. He is a Fellow of the IEEE and a Member of the Academia Europaea. He has over 40 IEEE or ACM journal papers, over 400 Thomson-Reuters citations, and about 4000 Google Scholar citations (including those that miss-spell his name:).

The same course was delivered at Harvard University, MIT and Purdue University, 2016!!!