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FOG COMPUTING FEATURE NEWS

EdgeX Foundry Grows and Expands Developer Tools, Edging Toward an Open Marketplace for Edge Computing

By Cynthia S. Artin October 16, 2018

Tech giant Intel, along with Redis Labs, ZEDEDA, Windmill Enterprise, Basking Automation, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, DATA AHEAD, CertusNet and the Federal University of Campina Grande Embedded Lab, have joined The Linux Foundation’s EdgeX Foundry, signaling a new phase of innovation including participation from global academic institutions.

“We’re standing at a critical point for digital transformation,” said Jason Shepherd, EdgeX Foundry Governing Board Chair and Dell Technologies IoT and Edge Computing CTO. “The massive volume of devices coming online represents a huge opportunity for innovation and is making edge computing a necessity. We need an open, cloud-native edge ecosystem enabled by EdgeX to minimize reinvention and facilitate building and deploying distributed, interoperable applications from the edge to the cloud. We’re thrilled to welcome these new member organizations into our already strong community that shares the same commitment to open collaboration and innovation.”

The EdgeX community will be demonstrating advanced smart building technology in Barcelona this week at IoT Solutions World Congress (October 16-18), while also introducing new developer kits taking EdgeX even closer to conquering the hardest problems in the IoT and Industrial IoT and previewing an “open marketplace” for edge computing.

Developer kits are important tools for building new applications and solutions, and with a growing number of those kits coming online, EdgeX says “the majority of these kits lock the developer into a particular back-end platform or cloud.”

The new dev kits based on the EdgeX open framework will provide developers with the freedom to choose from an ecosystem of components that work together automatically when they use EdgeX interoperability APIs. 

“With the emergence of these dev kits, developers will have the opportunity to prototype with their choice of ingredients while taking advantage of plug-in components from EdgeX’s growing vendor-neutral ecosystem,” said Shepherd. “This allows them to focus on innovation rather than reinvention, in addition to being able to add and exchange components at any time to optimize their solution throughout the development and deployment lifecycle.”

Hosted by The Linux Foundation, the EdgeX platform is architected to run on any hardware or operating system and unify components coded in any programming language to accelerate time to market and simplify the deployment of secure IoT solutions. The framework serves as a de facto standard to bring together any mix of existing connectivity protocols with an ecosystem of heterogeneous value-add applications.

There will be two different kinds of dev kits - community and commercial. For options in the community track, the bill of materials will be purchased independently online, the code will be downloaded straight from a special repository on the project GitHub, and questions will be answered through forums like the EdgeX Rocket Chat.

The first kit is based on the Samsung Artik with Grove sensor, and options will grow through community contributions over time. More information on the community dev kits can be found on the EdgeX website here.

The commercial track for the dev kits will provide EdgeX members with the ability to seed the emergence of an open marketplace for IoT edge computing. These kits will offer end users with attractive options to get started with professional support so they can focus on their preferred value-add rather than supporting open source code.

Commercial options will include kits based on supported versions of the EdgeX framework itself (neutral to any plug-in value add), kits based on specific IoT platforms, and microservice plug-ins for value-add such as analytics, data orchestration and security. 

To illustrate what is possible through the unified EdgeX platform, several community members will bring together heterogeneous solution components supporting a “real-world, smart flexible office space environment based on components from a variety of vendors leveraging numerous connectivity standards, operating systems and hardware types.”

You can see the live demo at the EdgeX Foundry booth, located at Gran Via Hall 2, Street C, Stand 361.

Other members with demos in the booth include Basking Automation, CloudPlugs, Enigmedia, IOTech, Redis Labs, RSA, VMware and ZEDEDA. 

This is the first of a series of planned community demos, which will be used to showcase the full capabilities of the EdgeX IoT platform across several use cases and vertical markets in addition to seeding efforts for plug-fests and test beds.

EdgeX is also showing off their “California” release, which made the switch to Golang for the baseline reference implementation earlier this year. Since that release in April, unique code contributions from members and non-members alike have more than doubled to 70.

The upcoming “Delhi” release, which offers major enhancements including the first management features, more security functionality such as access control and improved security bootstrapping, C and Golang-based Device Service SDKs and a reference GUI for demos and simple deployments, will launch by the end of this year.

Intel joins the EdgeX Ecosystem

Launched in 2017, EdgeX Foundry has created an open community that values contributions and participation from member companies that hail from 18 countries across the globe. In fact, EdgeX has gained the attention of organizations from all facets of the IoT landscape - from startups to technology giants - including Intel, which is one of the nine newest members.

“Today’s announcement represents one more step in Intel’s open source journey and increased role in the advocacy, use and contribution across the ecosystem,” said Stacey Shulman, chief innovation officer for Retail Solutions at Intel. “Intel's involvement in EdgeX Foundry will help drive scale and accessibility of solutions for both our customers and businesses of all sizes."

Other new EdgeX Foundry project members include Basking Automation GmbH, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications (BUPT), DATA AHEAD, CertusNet, Redis Labs, the Federal University of Campina Grande (UFCG) /Embedded Lab, Windmill Enterprise and ZEDEDA. 

Quotes from New Members

Basking Automation

“From our experience, we know that every building has its own challenges. To best serve our customers, we need to be flexible in terms of the hardware and protocols we use, so partnering with EdgeX Foundry is a logical step for us,” said Eldar Gizzatov, co-founder and CEO of Basking Automation. “Interoperability that comes with EdgeX-based software allows us to speed up the process of integrating smart building equipment such as meters, thermostats, and lighting controls. This faster deployment is a real game-changer for the industry.”

Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications (BUPT)

“Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications will promote the healthy development of the IoT ecosystem through the EdgeX Foundry framework,” said Professor Yonghua Li. “EdgeX Foundry will promote collaboration with Chinese enterprises of all sizes, and improve the interconnection and interoperability of IoT.  This is a good foundation for the development of edge computing and it will help us meet the huge demand. In fact, we already have students developing with EdgeX.”

CertusNet

“CertusNet implements industrial protocol conversion, edge data collection, persistent storage and lightweight data analysis by integrating EdgeX in intelligent gateways. It also integrates multiple microservices with edge computing capabilities in the gateway. We have successfully applied smart gateways to the industrial arena to help companies achieve video pre-processing, predictive maintenance and production process improvements," said Jian Mao, Vice President of CertusNet Flexible Edge Computing Research Center. “CertusNet is optimistic about the unparalleled ecological value of EdgeX. Meanwhile, CertusNet is committed to creating a richer ecosystem for the EdgeX Foundry community and providing the industry with flexible service based on edge computing models.

Data Ahead

“In our experience, the way to success in IoT is to create value chains among best-in-class players. Even the most integrated, biggest and deepest pockets player can not make it alone,” said Ulrich Grauvogel, Chief Marketing Officer for Data Ahead AG. “Any proprietary or integrated ecosystem will lack one or more of the IoT raw data key criteria of Velocity, Volume, Variety, Volatility and Visibility. With ElasticGear and HIFIVE by Data Ahead, any player on application level is ready to view and access the required raw data without obstacles provided by dedicated Edge or proprietary storage. We’re excited to bring this to the table and help make the EdgeX Foundry ecosystem stronger.”

Redis Labs

“Redis is an ideal database for IoT use cases. It embeds itself easily on IoT edge devices, enabling analytics of data closer to the source and responding faster to real-time business needs,” said Rob Schauble, Vice President of Emerging Technologies for Redis Labs. “We are excited to join EdgeX Foundry and work together to create simplified, distributed and complex computing directly on the edge.”

Federal University of Campina Grande (UFCG)/The Embedded Lab

“The Embedded Lab, located at Federal University of Campina Grande (UFCG), is responsible for integrating academy and industry through innovation, research and development projects, that are results of the partnership between its professors/researchers and companies around the world,” said Dalton Valadares, a Researcher at Embedded Lab. “We believe EdgeX Foundry can help developers to provide robust IoT solutions, and can become the de facto standard for the IoT ecosystem. Our hope is that we can contribute to consolidate the use and development of EdgeX Foundry in Brazil.”

Windmill Enterprise

"We support EdgeX Foundry's leadership role in moving industrial IoT intelligence to the edge, where it belongs. With that said, enterprise adoption of IoT solutions remains slow due to inconsistent security implementations across various IoT platforms,” said Michael Hathaway, CO-Founder and CEO of Windmill Enterprise. “Windmill Enterprise is committed to working with the EdgeX community to create a uniform system where enterprises can manage their user and machine identities and enforce security policies in a uniform manner across all these systems. We feel EdgeX Foundry has created a platform that is complementary to our solution and look forward to contributing."

ZEDEDA

"ZEDEDA's vision of unleashing cloud-native apps to run anywhere, on any device, over any network aligns perfectly with EdgeX Foundry’s charter of driving open interoperability between edge devices," said Joel Vincent, CMO of ZEDEDA. "We are excited to join EdgeX Foundry and support this effort as this approach is the only path to truly scaling out apps and unleashing the business-impacting promise of cloud-native IoT and edge applications across a diverse ecosystem of edge hardware."




Edited by Ken Briodagh

Contributing Writer

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