Even the first Linux version 0.01 (released on 17 September 1991) was based on Intel's x86 processor family. And even today, x86 processors are still the preferred platform when it comes to integrating new features or subsystems into the Linux kernel. In return, Intel provides generous support to the Linux and open source developer community. A cornerstone of this support is Intel's membership in the Linux Foundation, where, among others, the "Linux creator" Linus Torvalds is employed. The Open Source Automation Development Lab OSADL is modelled on the Linux Foundation in some ways - but OSADL focuses specifically on the needs of the automation industry, machine building and embedded systems in general.
With the availability of new Intel processors that offer high computing power, low power consumption and small chip dimensions, many OSADL members (and other automation companies, of course) will increasingly use Intel processors in future product generations. In this context, Intel has decided to extend its open source support and join OSADL. The new Intel processors are also ideally suited for all kinds of embedded systems - including the new mobile internet devices, which - according to IDC forecasts - are expected to reach an estimated 15 billion devices in 2015.
"Already a billion of anything is a staggeringly high number," said Doug Davis, executive vice-president of Intel's Embedded and Communications Group, "but when you start thinking about 15 billion Internet-connected smart devices, you realise that our industry is on the cusp of something really new." It is understood that large production runs are the guarantor that the new processors will be unrestricted, competitively priced and continuously developed. Welcome Intel to OSADL! Together we will develop future embedded systems that will be better than we currently believe possible.
As part of Hannover Messe 2009, SERCOS International, the user organisation behind the SERCOS III real-time Ethernet standard, is announcing the availability of a Linux open source driver for SERCOS III.This means that future versions of the official Linux kernel may allow a Linux master to communicate directly with SERCOS III devices without the need for additional driver software.
"SERCOS International, as a user organisation, has been advocating open, vendor-independent and freely available technology since its founding in 1990," explains Peter Lutz, Managing Director of SERCOS International. "SERCOS III is a very powerful and universal real-time Ethernet solution that is used in a wide range of applications and industries. Because Linux is now widely accepted as a platform for the automation industry and mechanical engineering, we decided to provide a master library for SERCOS III that is fully compatible with the requirements of an open source software licence."
As a result, it was of course absolutely natural to now also join the Open Source Automation Development Lab. OSADL is very pleased to welcome SERCOS International as a new member and to help provide support for SERCOS III in the world of open source.
In addition to its proprietary microkernel-based real-time virtualisation platform PikeOS, SYSGO offers the embedded Linux distribution ELinOS. This offers support for all CPU architectures that Linux also supports, such as ARM, MIPS, PowerPC, SH4, x86 and XScale. Board support packages for a long list of hardware manufacturers are available - including OSADL members Eltec, Kontron and Phytec.
SYSGO also supports the so-called PREEMPT_RT patches, which can be used to convert standard Linux into a real-time capable operating system, and which are also maintained as part of an OSADL project. These and other OSADL activities are directly or indirectly related to SYSGO's development activities for ELinOS; as a result, SYSGO has now also decided to become an OSADL member. Together we will continue to improve the official Linux and continue to focus on adapting/extending Linux as much as possible for the needs of industrial and embedded systems. OSADL warmly welcomes all SYSGO members and is looking forward to a successful cooperation.
"Open Source meets Industry" at Hannover Messes 2009 As previously announced, OSADL, in cooperation with the Robotation Academy and VDMA, is once again organising a conference during this year's Hannover Messe on the theme of "Open Source meets Industry".This will cover sociological, socio-economic, practical-technical, legal, licensing, business policy and strategic aspects of the use of open source software in companies. On this occasion, OSADL's new members Intel, SERCOS International and SYSGO will present their products and explain why joining OSADL is good for everyone.
The conference will take place on 22.4 from 10:00 to 16:45, registration is on the OSADL homepage www.osadl.org