Ada-Belgium is pleased to announce the program for its
Ada Developer Room at FOSDEM 2016
on Saturday 30 January 2016
Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Solbosch Campus, Room AW1.124
Avenue Franklin D. Roosevelt Laan 50, B-1050 Brussels, Belgium
Organized in cooperation with Ada-Europe
FOSDEM, the Free and Open source Software Developers' European Meeting,
is a non-commercial two-day weekend event organized early each year in
Brussels, Belgium. It is highly developer-oriented and brings together
5000+ participants from all over the world. The goal is to provide
open source developers and communities a place to meet with other
developers and projects, to be informed about the latest developments
in the open source world, to attend interesting talks and presentations
on various topics by open source project leaders and committers, and
to promote the development and the benefits of open source solutions.
The 2016 edition takes place on Saturday 30 and Sunday 31 January.
It is free to attend and no registration is necessary.
In this edition, Ada-Belgium organizes once more a series of
presentations related to Ada and Free or Open Software in a s.c.
Developer Room. The "Ada DevRoom" at FOSDEM 2016 is held on the
first day of the event, Saturday 30 January 2016.
Ada is a general-purpose programming language originally designed
for safety- and mission-critical software engineering. It is used
extensively in air traffic control, rail transportation, aerospace,
nuclear, financial services, medical devices, etc. It is also
perfectly suited for open source development. The latest Ada standard
was published by ISO in December 2012. As with the prior Ada 1995
and Ada 2005 standards, the first full implementation of the new Ada
2012 standard was made available in the GNU Compiler Collection (GNAT).
The Ada DevRoom aims to present the capabilities offered by the Ada
language (such as object-oriented, multicore, or embedded programming)
as well as some of the many exciting tools and projects using Ada.
Ada Developer Room Presentations (AW1.124, 59 seats)
The presentations in the Ada DevRoom start after the opening FOSDEM
keynote. The program runs from 10:30 to 19:00, and consists of 7
hours with 11 talks/demos by 9 presenters from 5 different countries,
plus 3 half-hour breaks with informal discussions.
10:30-11:00 - Arrival & Informal Discussions
Feel free to arrive early, to start the day with some informal
discussions while the set-up of the DevRoom is finished.
11:00-11:05 - Welcome
by Dirk Craeynest - Ada-Belgium
Welcome to the Ada Developer Room at FOSDEM 2016, which is organized
by Ada-Belgium in cooperation with Ada-Europe. Ada-Belgium and
Ada-Europe are non-profit organizations set up to promote the
use of the Ada programming language and related technology,
and to disseminate knowledge and experience into academia,
research and industry in Belgium and Europe, resp. Ada-Europe has
member-organizations, such as Ada-Belgium, in various countries.
More information on this DevRoom is available on the Ada-Belgium
web-site (see URL above).
11:05-11:55 - An Intro to Ada for Beginning and Experienced Programmers
by Jean-Pierre Rosen - Adalog
An overview of the main features of the Ada language, with special
emphasis on those features that make it especially attractive for
free software development. Ada is a feature-rich language, but what
really makes Ada stand-out is that the features are nicely integrated
towards serving the goals of software engineering. If you prefer
to spend your time on designing elegant solutions rather than on
low-level debugging, if you think that software should not fail,
if you like to build programs from readily available components
that you can trust, you should really consider Ada!
12:00-12:50 - Make with Ada - Small Projects to Have Fun with Ada!
by Fabien Chouteau - AdaCore
In this talk I will present the first 4 projects of the "Make with
Ada" blog post series: a solenoid engine, an Apollo lunar lander
simulator, a software synthesizer framework, and a formally proven
smartwatch app. I will also explain the motivation behind this
series, where we want to go, and the feedback we've got from it.
13:00-13:25 - Adopting an Ada Program
- the Experience of Whitaker's Words
by Martin Keegan - Unipart & Open Book Publishers
I present my experiences of adopting the maintenance of Whitaker's
Words, a Latin dictionary written in Ada by Col William Whitaker,
who was deeply involved in the creation of Ada itself. This will
be the perspective of someone from outside the Ada community who
found he really liked the language, and the challenges I faced
learning Ada from online materials, converting the Words source
code to more idiomatic (post Ada-83) forms, adopting the tooling,
accessing community support, finding collaborators, making Ada play
nicely with the Web, and so on. Whitaker's Words may be one of
the most widely-used pieces of Ada software, and a quick Twitter
search suggests it plays a key role in helping students cheat
on their Latin translation homework. As a linguist and hacker,
what really interests me is the use of Ada's type system to encode
13:30-13:55 - Creating a 3D Game Engine in Windows
- Lessons Learned from Doom 3 BFG
by Justin Squirek
Ada Doom 3 is an open source project created as both an experiment
and as a serious attempt at making a Windows game engine capable
of fully rendering Doom 3 assets. Engineering a complete OS media
layer and 3D engine that facilitates multiple platforms presents many
unique challenges. These challenges and solutions will be discussed.
I will also cover how Ada aided in the process of reverse engineering
the half million line Doom 3 BFG (Id Tech 4 BFG) code base and how
its typing system helped steer the development of Ada Doom 3 to
its current state.
14:00-14:30 - Informal Discussions
A half-hour slot has been reserved for much needed interaction
and informal discussion among Ada DevRoom participants and anyone
potentially interested in Ada.
14:30-14:55 - Heterogeneous Parallel Computing with Ada Tasking
by Jan Verschelde - University of Illinois at Chicago
Consider the organization of parallel heterogeneous computations.
The sequential version runs in two stages: the first stage produces
jobs that can be computed independently from each other in the
second stage. The producer in the first stage is executed by
one task, while the other tasks compute the jobs from the second
stage, as the jobs are managed by a queue, implemented by a thread
safe package. This design will be illustrated with an application
that involves the refactoring of code in the free and open source
package PHCpack, a package to solve polynomial systems by polynomial
15:00-15:50 - Micro- and Macro-Optimizing a Distributed System
by Philippe Waroquiers - Eurocontrol
Or how to upload a 30000 flights simulation in 15 seconds.
The Eurocontrol Flow Management System provides a simulation
functionality to evaluate air traffic flow management measures
(such as delay assignments or reroutings) before applying them
operationally. This implies to upload a day worth of traffic
in a simulation environment. This talk will describe various
techniques and tools used to optimize the simulation startup time,
and will discuss the gains reached via micro-optimization (among
others using Valgrind) or via macro-optimization (such as using
parallelism features of Ada).
16:00-16:25 - Controlling a Train Model w. GNAT GPL for Raspberry Pi 2
by Tristan Gingold - AdaCore
The GNAT GPL 2015 release by AdaCore includes a cross-compiler for a
new platform: Raspberry Pi 2. We have used this platform to drive
and control a real model train in Ada. SPARK was used to prove
absence of collisions. I will present the hardware part as well
as the software part, and show a video of the model train in action.
16:30-16:55 - CrazyFlie Drone Software in SPARK Ada
by Tristan Gingold - AdaCore
An AdaCore intern has rewritten the CrazyFlie drone software,
originally in C, into SPARK. In addition to fixing some bugs,
this allowed to prove absence of runtime errors. I will present
the various technics used to achieve that result, and plan to do
a live demo of free fall detection.
17:00-17:50 - Memory Management with Ada 2012
by Jean-Pierre Rosen - Adalog
Dynamic memory management has always been a source of trouble,
and garbage collection is just a way to overcome the lack of proper
memory management in many languages. This presentation shows how
Ada addresses this issue in several original ways: first by requiring
much less dynamic memory than other languages, and then by providing
powerful tools for controlling allocation and deallocation when it
18:00-18:25 - A Command-Line Driver Generator
by Jacob Sparre Andersen - JSA Research & Innovation
A tool, which can take an Ada package specification, and generate
a command-line driver for calling the procedures declared in
the package. Which of the procedures is called is controlled
by the names of the arguments passed to the driver program.
The presentation will cover: how to use the tool; and some details
of how the tool works - using the Ada Semantic Interface Standard
18:30-19:00 - Informal Discussions & Closing
Informal discussion on ideas and proposals for future events.
More information on Ada DevRoom
Speakers bios, pointers to relevant information, links to the FOSDEM
site, etc., are available on the Ada-Belgium site at
We invite you to attend some or all of the presentations: they will
be given in English. Everybody interested can attend FOSDEM 2016;
no registration is necessary.
We hope to see many of you there!
Dirk Craeynest, FOSDEM Ada DevRoom coordinator
[log in to unmask] (for Ada-Belgium/Ada-Europe/SIGAda/WG9)
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