GDevCon #2 Presentations

We are very excited to announce the presentations for GDevCon #2. 
Download the linked PDF below for a detailed timeline of both days:

Scroll down to view our new offering for GDevCon #2: Workshops!

in alphabetical order

Agenda

Designing advanced UI/UX for LabVIEW based applications

Arev Hambardzumyan

RAFA Solutions

The user interface is a window through which users experience your application. Even the most sophisticated application can fail, if it lacks user friendly interface or not properly thought out user experience.
Convenient and intuitive user interface bridges the distance between the user and the product. It makes the user feel familiar with the product just from the first launch, guiding him through it, making it easy to use.
The session covers the best practices of designing user friendly and intuitive user interfaces for applications developed in LabVIEW environment. The session presents several examples showing the main differences of the UI design depending on an application and intended user.

Arev Hambardzumyan is a CTO at RAFA Solutions. She started her career as an IC circuit designer at Synopsys, Inc. Joining RAFA Solutions in 2012 as the first systems engineer, she designed and delivered more than 20 projects ranging from the data acquisition systems for the pipeline monitoring, to universal memory testers.
As a lead engineer she is responsible for the scope and technical requirements management, and system architecture development.
Arev leads a cross-functional teams of hardware and software developers, responsible for engineering system design and development, and product development. She is a Certified LabVIEW Embedded Developer, Certified LabVIEW Architect and LabVIEW Champion. Arev holds master's degree in Electrical Engineering from the State Engineering University of Armenia.

Panel Discussion: How to introduce new members to a team of LabVIEW developers (and keep them there!)

Ben Carruthers-Watt

Renishaw

Adding new members to an existing team of developers has a series of challenges and incorporates requirements such as: ensuring the team follows established practices, providing suitable opportunities for development for the members and ensuring the team is productive and valuable to the business. The nature of these challenges can be significantly different depending on the skills and experience of the individual and the solutions to the challenges may unique for each person. Example problems are :

  • Is it worth allowing a new developer to "waste" time doing a bad job of solving real-world problems but learning from their mistakes if the work they produce will have to be re-done?

  • How do you create personal development opportunities for a good developer with a very broad knowledge of coding practices?

  • Should you allow a very experienced developer to work outside the team's standard practices if they are producing good quality work?

  • Can relaxing standard practices provide a more flexible environment for a team with a range of experience?

 

A panel, with varying levels of experience, will discuss the pros and cons of adopting different approaches to these challenges.

I am a Senior Process Development Engineer working in the Encoder Products Division of Renishaw. I am responsible for the development of production and test equipment used to manufacture our scale products. This job involves bringing together the multiple disciplines of Mechanical, Electronic and Software Engineering to create robust production systems capable of creating products with nanometre levels of accuracy. Previously, I worked with Tata Steel and Cardiff University whilst studying for an EngD. This is where I was first introduced to LabVIEW by creating a vision-based measurement system in the hot-rolling mill.

Rebar: What Rust Can Teach G

Ben Leedom

National Instruments

Rebar (https://github.com/ni/rebar) is an open-source graphical language addon to LabVIEW NXG that incorporates the concepts of value ownership and reference safety from Rust (https://www.rust-lang.org/). This presentation will cover how Rebar allows the developer to write memory-efficient graphical code and implement data types with capabilities reserved for refnums in G; it will also preview other language features that Rebar might enable beyond G.

Ben Leedom has been working at National Instruments on LabVIEW NXG for 11 years and won't be finished anytime soon. He is an expert in migration to the NXG platform and the G compilation process. He is also interested in bringing good ideas from other programming environments into graphical dataflow

Why bother with continuous integration?

Chris Woodhams

Argenta

At Argenta we recently started utilising continuous deployment, I will be sharing our experience so far and how we plan to extend
our use of it in the future. This will include the tools we are using, the challenges we've had and I'll also discuss the benefits that we have seen as a result of the implementation.

I will also be inviting a few members of the community, with experience of continuous deployment, to join me to share their experiences and the benefits they have seen.
 

Prior to joining Argenta I spent 7 years in the aerospace industry; initially working on the shop floor before specialising in developing and maintaining control and measurement software for engine fuel control system test rigs. I've been using LabVIEW within manufacturing and engineering for almost 15 years and have been running the Midlands LabVIEW User Group (MLUG) since 2014, which has been a fantastic experience. I’m also part of the GDevCon team and am excited to be presenting at our second conference. I love the LabVIEW community, which has been a saviour for me on a number of occasions!

 

Hammers, Nails and Philosophical Tales

Darren Mather

iNU Solutions

Ever heard the phrase "if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail?" In this presentation I aim to show that there are many hammers for many problems and you don't always need the biggest one to solve it! I?ll also add in some stuff about being nice to people and let people know that sometimes, silence is golden.

I have been using LabVIEW since 2007 and am currently a CLA and Champion. In my position as Software Architect at iNU Solutions I specialise in designing test platforms for the semiconductor and aerospace industries. I have been described as "mildly mischievous" and "subtly subversive", but don't believe everything you read...

A Practical Guide to Signal Acquisition

Gary Boorman

CERN

All of us are experts when it comes to developing successful LabVIEW-based test, measurement and control systems. But it is my experience that connecting external signals to an acquisition system is where many systems can falter.

 

This talk will explain the importance of correctly configured cabling and how to avoid problems due to (mis)matching. I will also demystify the 'floating/grounded source and single-ended/differential' connection diagram at the end of almost all DAQ-card datasheets, and explain what all those ADC parameters really mean. The talk is packed with practical demonstrations (using signal sources, oscilloscopes, ADCs, weird cables) emphasising how to connect signals properly, and importantly, how to recognise when the DAQ section has been "badly" connected.

Git Submodules - An alternative approach to code reuse

Greg Payne

Labvolution

Git submodules is an alternative method for reusing source code between projects while maintaining full traceability and change history. After using submodules for code reuse within my last few projects, I feel this method has some advantages over the current reuse offerings. I aim to discuss and demonstrate how I use git submodules within my projects and some of the tools I have developed to make this easier, mainly a Project Provider addon that integrates into the LabVIEW project.

Greg Payne is a Software Engineer specialising in LabVIEW development. A Certified LabVIEW Architect, Greg also has experience in TestStand and Android, having developed an Android-based turnkey solution for a handheld infrared camera.
He has successfully developed test solutions for LTE and WiFi base stations to enable internet access in rural locations, vehicle simulators for fleet management, and weather-monitoring infrared detectors.
Greg’s pragmatic approach allows businesses to increase efficiency and efficacy without unnecessary investment or overly complicated solutions. His holistic viewpoint means that he understands and aligns to commercial imperatives and can turn his hand to most problems.
When he’s not working, he enjoys creating his own software-based projects and attempting (sometimes successfully) the odd homebrew.
 

5 Tips to Efficient FPGA programming in LabVIEW

Ian Billingsley

Computer Controlled Solutions

Programming in the FPGA LabVIEW environment is subtly different. In this presentation we aim to summarise our 13 years of developing flexible and robust FPGA LabVIEW code into our top 5 tips. This will have a particular focus on building code to minimise development time and maximise re-use.

I am the Software Director at Computer Controlled Solutions Ltd


In 1998 I discovered a remarkable graphically based programming language called LabVIEW as I started working as a rookie software engineer. Since then I like to believe I have built up a wealth of experience of the good, the bad and the ugly paths of software development.
Developing FPGA based Control and Acquisition systems for the Aerospace and Automotive industries has been our bread and butter since around 2006 and I am looking forward to summarising some of our most effective tips in this presentation.

Application Design Around SQLite

James Powell

JDP Science

SQLite is a powerful fully capable database-in-a-file that can be embedded as the data-driven core of a LabVIEW application. This talk will cover practical details of how to build an advanced application around SQLite, and will introduce a range of advanced techniques.

Originally from Canada, James Powell was introduced to LabVIEW while working as a Nuclear Physicist at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab in California. He is now a consultant doing LabVIEW full time and working for a range of technology-focused small companies near Oxford in the UK. He is the author of a number of freely-available packages for LabVIEW, including SQLite Library, JSONtext, Flatline Controls, and Messenger Library.

A Route to Strongly Typed Nirvana

John Medland

LabVIEW's strongly-typed nature practically removes the risk of data-type mismatches at runtime. The problem? Most architectures implement some form of data flattening and crucially, unflattening to pipe information around an application; Think of the variant-type message field of the Queued Message Handler or the non-trivial casting of Actors to more specific classes in the Actor-Framework. Conventions and careful testing can help to avoid and eliminate the bugs that arise from these issues but a "broken Run Arrow" is the best defence against these kinds of problems. This presentation aims to explain one possible route back to this strongly-typed nirvana and to show how an event-driven model for inter-process communication lends itself well to the task. Methods of using tooling to remove associated repetitive programming tasks are demonstrated and the possible future for this type of framework is discussed.

An electronic engineer and CLA, John enjoys crafting both source-code and circuits in his work building instruments for scientific discovery and solving technical challenges. He has been smitten with LabVIEW for nearly 10 years and loves the chance to collaborate, share his knowledge and learn something new.

Importance of Abstraction & Standardisation in Automated Test & Measurement Systems

Jonathan Hobson

TBG Solutions

The need for dynamic, scalable and reconfigurable test & measurement equipment is becoming more and more prevalent in a range of industries and applications from production test to R&D, to fulfill these ever changing requirements a strong foundation of abstraction and standardisation is required. In this session we will explore a range of abstraction techniques including hardware and measurement abstraction as well as the benefits of providing a standardised platform across multiple ATEs.

I am currently the Systems Engineering Group Lead at TBG Solutions, a UK based Gold Alliance Partner specialising in Automated Test, DAQ and control systems in a range of applications with primary business in the Aerospace and Defence sector.


My team is responsible for delivering software and hardware integration for a range of projects from door handle test systems to aircraft engine test beds, primarily using the NI platform but incorporating a range of other COTS hardware and software languages.
Having previously worked for NI on their ELP Internship program I have had exposure to a wide range of NI applications which has carried through to my current role at TBG where I have been involved in a number of systems we have delivered in the UK and around the globe.

A Class-Based Producer/Consumer Loop Actor Architecture

Malcolm Myers

AMH Test Systems

Programmers who are at LabVIEW Core 3 / CLD level are able to programme a completely functioning executable. But what happens when they are asked to develop a system with up to fifty independent and asynchronous modules? Such a challenge may seem daunting to a mid-level programmer.

An architecture is proposed that uses Producer Consumer Loops to create individual, autonomous code modules that are able to operate independently and yet can also communicate with each other. It introduces the concept of classes and dynamic dispatch, not only to simplify and speed up programming, but also to create consistency across modules. In this way it aims to be an Actor Framework for the mid-level programmer who wants to move up to producing larger, class-based systems. There’s even a trip to McDonalds and the cinema thrown in for good measure!

Malcolm first learnt LabVIEW in 1996 and has programmed in LabVIEW on and off since then. However, he became a full-time LabVIEW programmer in 2012 when he started AMH Test Systems. He is a Certified LabVIEW Architect, National Instruments Alliance Partner and is a member of the Alliance of LabVIEW Architects. He has a Bachelors degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Imperial College, London and a Masters degree in Audio Systems Engineering from Essex University. His special area of interest is, acoustics, sound and vibration analysis.

Start programming Web applications in pure G, now!

Matthias Baudot

StudioBods

LabVIEW NXG Web Module now allows LabVIEW programmers to develop web applications in pure G. However, creating a powerful Web application using NXG is not as straightforward as creating a "Measure, Analyze, Display" application with LabVIEW, especially since NXG is quite at an early stage of development. In this presentation, we're giving you all the keys needed to implement a complex and secured Web application that talks to Web Services and Databases, saving you weeks of troubleshooting and research.

Matthias Baudot has been working with LabVIEW for over ten years and is a worldwide leading expert in LabVIEW applications deployment and remote management. He is a LabVIEW Champion, presents regularly at NI Week, and has been awarded “World’s Fastest LabVIEW Programmer” in 2015.

Efficient Working with Databases in LabVIEW

Sam Sharp

MediaMongrels

A journey from basic database communication in LabVIEW, how I do things at the moment, how other languages tackle it (e.g. ActiveRecord) and a look at some potential tools/scripting to bridge the gap.

Sam Sharp is a LabVIEW Champion and the director of MediaMongrels Ltd, an NI Alliance Partner offering bespoke Control and Test & Measurement systems using a wide range of NI and non-NI hardware. He is the creator of the free LabVIEW WebSockets toolkit and one of the founding members of GDevCon.

Test Drive Development - A Real World Example.

Sam Taggart

System Automation Solutions

This is the story of my journey trying to implement TDD. I had played around with Unit Testing and CI before, but this is my first time trying to put it all together. I picked a small side project and thought I would try to implement TDD. This presentations documents the results.

Simply making it work is not good enough. Over my dozen years of coding in LabVIEW, I've inherited (and if I'm honest I have written at least in the early years) several projects that "worked", yet were not reliable or maintainable. A lot more goes into software engineering than simply writing code. I've dedicated the past several years to studying all these processes and best practices that surround writing great code. As part of that journey I have learned a ton from the community, which is why I am very excited to be able present this year at GDevCon to share some of the knowledge I've gained with some of the same people who have been so gracious as to share with me over the years.

State Machines Done Right

Steve Watts

SSDC

Many rescue jobs we see seem to have similar issues, this presentation takes a close look at state machine design. Areas covered will be: State Diagrams, State Machines, Difference between QMHs, Transitions, State Design, Uses and abuses.

Steve is a LabVIEW Champion and CLA who has been using LabVIEW for a few (many) years, he is co-owner of SSDC which was founded in 1998. Alongside 'normal' day to day business Steve also organises and presents at the Central South LabVIEW User Group (CSLUG). As one of the founders of GDevCon he is excited to get on stage after sitting it out last year! If you want any more info just click here.

Improving the LabVIEW Developer’s Experience

Thomas McQuillan

Scientifica

When I develop code, I want the process of converting idea to code to be as streamlined and convenient as possible. This protects against context switching (and in my case: forgetting). With this in mind I have been working on introducing tools to the LabVIEW environment to better workflows and improve the development experience. Take for example Object Oriented Programming, we spend a lot of time switching between the project explorer and the block diagram, but as programmers, we want to stay in the block diagrams where the code lives. In this presentation, I will take you through how to extend the LabVIEW IDE in multiple ways and pinpoint exactly where and how to implement scripting to improve the LabVIEW developer experience.

Tom is a full time software developer at Scientifica where he designs and develops software for neuroscience research. He also runs a LabVIEW YouTube channel (Tom’s LabVIEW Adventure) and regularly teaches all of the LabVIEW, TestStand, VeriStand and DIAdem training courses as a Certified Professional Instructor. Prior to working at Scientifica, he spent two years working at National Instruments, where he supported hundreds of unique applications to solve engineering challenges, and qualified as a Certified LabVIEW Architect. Before working at National Instruments Tom also worked for two NI alliance partners where he developed custom software and designed automated test equipment.

Please be aware these are working titles and subject to change. We need to reserve the right to change the list of presentations without notice to keep our flexibility.

 

GDevCon #2 Workshops

At GDevCon we want to provide the opportunity for actual hands-on learning. So this year we're dipping our toes into the Workshop waters:

 

You can find all the details on GDevCon.com/workshops.

We are excited to try this out for the first time in this new setup. Hopefully this will pave the way for many more workshops from many other LabVIEW friends in the years to come! Feel free to contact us if you need any info about the workshops or GDevCon in general!

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