RDK Tech Summit

RDK is an open-source software platform for the connected home that standardizes core functions used in broadband devices, set-top boxes, and IoT. It enables operators to manage their devices; control their business models; and customize their apps, UIs, and data analytics to improve the customer experience and drive business results. The RDK community comprises more than 430 companies, including CPE manufacturers, SoC vendors, software developers, system integrators, and service providers.

And now, the RDK Tech Summit has become a significant industry event with presentations, discussions, Q&As, a hackathon, and operators sharing their hands-on experiences with the community. The event is an important driver for RDK innovation.

ASSIA took part in the RDK-B (Reference Design Kit-Broadband) session on November 18.
Comcast’s Charles Moreman introduced the session and reminded us that there are now over 30 million devices running the RDK-B platform. Now, its use has extended beyond cable modem devices (where ASSIA first gained experience implementing its agent) to cover the broader range of access technologies that telecom operators have adopted.

We saw for ourselves that RDK Central had built a robust ecosystem with thousands of people registered on the Wiki. Further, an extensive set of software solutions were represented, which provide critical features for Wi-Fi/mesh management, parental controls, advanced security, plug-in interfaces for cloud-based management, and service provider telemetry. ASSIA is leveraging these functions and supports establishing a robust hardware abstraction layer (HAL) to simplify support across hardware variants as part of our well-established, multi-vendor strategy.

We’ve gained significant experience working with RDK-B-based devices. First, we needed to obtain the required data for our ML/AI algorithms and the controls to enable real-time action when managing Wi-Fi and mesh networks. Further, we worked on monitoring CPE health and end devices to ensure the throughput, latency, and consistency from the network could support the full range of video streaming, conferencing, and web services that are now such a big part of everyday life.

In other news, we thought it was interesting that the Portuguese ISP, NOS Inovacao, is using Ripe Atlas technology to guarantee that the network is delivering services as promised. They are also evolving from separate, hardware-based to an embedded software probe, a bit like what we’ve seen develop for Ofcom and CAF-II using embedded agents to measure across the entire network.

Also relevant is CommScope’s development of TR369/USP agent for the RDK platform. ASSIA is a champion for this movement and has taken a leadership position in BBF to drive USP adoption. We’re supporting the Wi-Fi Alliance to help define the set of data elements that a USP agent should report to the cloud as standard protocol. With time, we expect USP to evolve to provide all the functions as we have today with the ASSIA agent embedded on RDK or other platforms.

Doing Our Part: Supporting #Coronavirusmakers in Madrid to Manufacture Supplies for Hospitals and Healthcare Workers

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, hospitals and healthcare workers are facing a critical shortage of masks, protective gear, and other components needed to save lives. In Spain, a group of technology volunteers is filling the gap. Coronavirusmakers is a volunteer organization comprised of 16,000 researchers, developers, engineers, and makers who are manufacturing respirator adaptors for ICUs, visors, masks, and other emergency medical supplies using plastic materials, and their 3D printers, along with other 3D printers donated by ASSIA and other technology companies.

Stefan Schiller, Testing Engineer at ASSIA is an active member of the CV19 FUENCARRAL – EL PARDO district Coronavirusmakers located in Madrid. The group has over 160 volunteers making anti-splash visors, ear protectors, and respirator adaptors using 3D printers at home.

The makers design, manufacture, and administer all of the logistics for collecting and distributing raw and sanitary materials required for production. They also welcome feedback from healthcare staff and adapt finished products to their needs.

6000 protective supplies already delivered

Coronavirusmakers has delivered more than 6000 protective pieces of gear to date. They have produced over 250 anti-splash visors daily for use in hospitals including La Paz, Ramón y Cajal, Ruber, Quiron and multiple nursing homes, health centers, supermarkets, post offices, pharmacies and other commodity stores all over Madrid.

Coronavirusmakers Chronology

  • 9 March: First Telegram group (channel to keep subscribers updated on COVID-19)
  • 12 March: 5000 makers organize in communities, provinces, cities, and districts.
  • 18 March: The first large set of visors produced
  • 25 March: Over 15,000 people subscribe to the Telegram groups.
  • 29 March: Delivered more than 350,000 visors nationwide

Increasing production and velocity

ASSIA is proud to support this incredible movement to save lives and promote safety and continuity. We have donated both plastic materials and 3D printers for the effort.

Schiller projects that with Assia’s plastic donation, makers will be able to produce 6000 more anti-splash screens and manufacture them in almost half the time. Once the pandemic is over, the group plans to donate the 3D printers to schools, youth centers, fab labs, and other makers who need them.

“I want to emphasize that this is a completely altruistic initiative,” stated Schiller. “None of us charges anything. We just want to help where we can.”