ICFPT '04 Conference - DAY 3

Aaaah last day of the conference. Was pretty hard to get up this morning. No doubt due to the beer. But a banana and a coffe set me straight. Yup still raining outside so the bus is looking good again today. Had a shower and went down to catch it. About 5 simply drove passed before one stopped and took me to the university. I missed about 10 minutes of the first session which was on Reconfigurable Systems.

John Williams - "Programmable Parallel Coprocessor Architectures for Reconfigurable Systems on Chip"

Weng-Fai Wong - "Windows CE for a Reconfigurable System-on-a-Chip Processor"

Hidetomo Shibamura - "EXPRESS-1: A Dynamically Reconfigurable Platform using Embedded Processor FPGA"

That was a very interesting session and exposes new opportunities for the current breed of FPGAs that have embedded hardcore microprocessors or normal FPGAs with the use of softcore microprocessors. It appears as though running Linux on a VirtexII Pro FPGA isn't just a neat little toy to have - it has the potential for managing FPGA resource such as cores for hardware processing. Morning tea was once again a fine selection of cakes and fruit. A bit of both and some juice was a good way of getting myself together. I think everyone seemed a little weary to be honest and were looking forward to getting some rest after the conference is over. Next sessions was on Design Flows.

Rajat Moona - "Migrating Software to Hardware FPGAs"

Velavan Manohararajah - "The Quartus University Information Program: Enabling Advanced FPGA Research"

Lesley Shannon - "Maximising System Performance: Using Reconfigurability to Monitor System Communications"

Aaah half way through the day. Only a couple more session to make it through. Time for lunch which was a little different than the usual one in the reception hall. Took a seat with the guys from NSW who had their development boards with them. Its pretty cool, they designed and fabricated their own boards for their students. The boards contain a Xilinx CPLD and a PIC Microcontroller. Also contains a wide range of interfaces and flashing LEDs and a LCD display. Cool stuff and all for $90 apparently. I'd probably blow it up so i won't ask them for one :p Lunch was a pretty decent BBQ out on the balcony of the Red Room (or something near to that name). Once again good food and good company. Roger Gook came and sat down and asked me if i'd put my work on the HandelC Divider Generator onthe Celoxica website as a research contribution. Will talk it over with David before i do anything on that. Anyhow after lunch it was onto the next session on Compilation.

Markus Weinhardt - "Using Function Folding to Improve Silicon Efficiency of Reconfigurable Arithmetic Arrays"

Robert Stewart - "Low FPGA Area Multiplier Blocks for Full Parallel FIR Filters"

Wayne Luk - "Pipelining Designs with Loop-Carried Dependencies"

I found most of the compilation stuff pretty interesting, but i think that i would have liked to see more high-level stuff relevant to my thesis. Was time for afternoon tea. Had a couple biscuits and sat down and surfed the web for a while and checked my email. I got the QUT wireless working on my laptop. YAY. Also had another quick chat to "ALTERA man". Wasn't long before the last session was underway on Cryptography. At this point i was pretty worn out, but hey it is the last session.

S Bajracharya, D. Misra, K. Gaj, T. El-Ghazawi - "Reconfigurable Hardware Implementation of Mesh Routing in Number Field Seive Factorisation"
[Name of presenter unknown]

O. Nibouche - "Fast Architectures For FPGA-based Implementation of RSA Encryption Algorithm"

Francis Crowe - "Single-Chip FPGA Implementation of a Cryptographic Co-Processor"

Well i guess that wraps up the conference. After Neil Bergmann officially closed off the conference, I said good-byes to a few people and headed off to catch a bus back to the hotel. Caught up with the Finnish Fella at the bus stop and we ended up walking back to the motel together. It wasn't raining and it isn't too far. Whilst walking i discussed my research with him and he thought it sounded pretty good. Will have to write-up a decent paper for FPL next year so i can see him in Finland. Well that's that then. FPT2004 was a good conference with some very good contributions and presentations by different authors. I met some very good people and learnt a great deal. I think that since i have been working in the area for a few years now i can understand what people have done better and hence get a lot more out of these conferences. Until next year.