The first Arm Innovator Tour is taking place across parts of Asia (China, Japan and Taiwan) throughout June 2018. Our goal? To learn about the amazing work being done by our developers on Arm technology, connect with our ecosystem and find 10 new talented technical leaders to join the Arm Innovator Program. This blog is part of a series detailing our experience running the first Arm Innovator Tour.
Did you know there are 21 billion (and rapidly growing) Arm processors shipped every year? We have many amazing developers working on our platforms on applications ranging from artificial intelligence, healthcare and automotive to robots and drones, that it is difficult to know where to begin! So, we decided to start at one of the largest and most important hardware events in the world, Computex, Taipei.
One of our first stops was the FutureWard to meet with Daniel Lin, who helped us get oriented with the local community in Taipei
We arrived in Taipei the second week of June and immediately began “pounding the pavement,” touring all of Taipei’s hacker and maker spaces, meeting key ecosystem enablers around Taiwan and connected with our local Arm team (and Mbed Technical Evangelist, Neil Tan) to gain an understanding of our surroundings.
At each Arm Innovator Tour stop, we have speaking slots for several local technical leaders and then we provide slots for 10 “Open Mic” sessions where local startups and individual developers doing interesting work are invited to get on stage and speak.
If you want to learn more about all of the places we visited, the food we ate and the culture we experienced while in Taipei, you can read my Hackster.io travel blog or the travel blog written by Jinger Zeng about her experience. For more details about our first Arm Innovator Tour event, read on!
Arm Innovator Jinger Zeng relates her experience as a woman in tech on the InnoVEX panel on empowering women in technology
For those of you who are new to the Arm ecosystem, we have launched a new program called the Arm Innovator Program. Starting last October with 10 initial members, we have grown the program to 19 total Innovators and will be adding another 10 as a result of our first Arm Innovator Tour in Asia.
What is an Arm Innovator? A good example is Jinger Zeng, currently residing in Chengdu, China, and one of our current Innovators. Jinger has a degree in Mechanical Engineering and founded a drone company called DroneSmith in Las Vegas which was subsequently inducted into the TechStarts IoT startup incubation batch in New York City. Jinger has since joined Auterion (who aim to become the RedHat of Drones) to lead their community and business development efforts. Jinger is charismatic, technical, hard working, innovative and a strong advocate for advancing the role of women in technology. For these reasons (and more), Jinger is among our Arm Innovators.
The lineup of panelists from the InnoVEX talk on empowering women in technology
One of the first things that happened while we went about our task of locating top Arm Innovators from the local region was that Jinger Zeng participated in a very successful panel focusing on how to empower women in technology (part of the InnoVEX startup show, a Computex event). Jinger was joined by eight leading women in tech including Noa Lifshitz (CEO of Noa’s Mark), Amanda Hsu (Women in IoT co-founder), Renee Yeh, Adriana Gascoigne (Girls in Tech), Kelly Liao (KuoBrothers Corp), Stephanie Tang (Rookie Fund) and Jane Hsu (IOX Center NTU).
As a result of this event, we met with many community members who subsequently attended or spoke at our event several days later. We learned about the Women in IoT group, founded by Amanda Hsu to help create local communities of women in tech around Taipei.
Hackster.io partner manager and Mandarin speaker Jessica Tangeman kicking off the very first Arm Innovator Tour, Taipei event
The venue of the event was the brand new Taiwan TechArena, a brand new 30,000sq foot startup accelerator funded by the Taiwanese Ministry of Science and Technology. We were lucky enough to be among the very first events hosted in the new facility, which only opened its doors for the first time the week of Computex, 2018. With this new facility, the Taiwanese government hope to accelerate the pace of innovation in Taipei, we were more than happy to find such a great venue for our event.
Victoria Huang, Executive Director of MOST
Our first speaker was Victoria Huang, Executive Director of the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST). She spoke about all of the resources Taiwan is dedicating towards encouraging more startups and local technology and educational ecosystem to choose Taipei as their home base. Taiwan is making extensive investments into encouraging major corporations to establish engineering and innovation centers in Taipei. Taipei and its government has also developed numerous programs to encourage foreign entrepreneurs to consider relocating to Taipei to take advantage of its many economic benefits, including low cost of living and extensive network to China and other nearby markets.
Myself, Rex St. John (Sr. Manager, IoT Ecosystem at Arm), giving an overview of Arm, our Innovator Program and important new technical developments including Arm Project Trillium, Platform Security Architecture and DesignStart
After Victoria Huang spoke, I took the stage to give a brief overview of Arm and our major new initiatives. The first thing I covered was the Arm Innovator Program, Arm Project Trillium (our new suite of AI enabling technologies), Platform Security Architecture (a framework to shift the economics of designing in security at IoT scale) and DesignStart (our program that provides the fastest, simplest route to custom silicon).
Neil Tan, Technical Evangelist for Mbed
Next up on stage we had Neil Tan, Technical Evangelist for the Mbed platform (Arm’s cloud and edge solution for IoT). Neil introduced his uTensor framework, an open source project designed to enable deep learning and AI on microcontrollers. Neil created uTensor to help developers run their deep learning programs on low-cost, low-energy Arm devices.
Jinger Zeng, Arm Innovator
After Neil, Jinger Zeng (Arm Innovator from Chengdu, China) spoke about the drone ecosystem and her work for Auterion and the DroneCode project. One of the first things my team did upon formation was to have Arm join the DroneCode project to help support the global drone and open source ecosystem. Auterion is a separate organization from DroneCode founded by some of the same team members which aims to be the “Red Hat” of Drones. What that means is that Auterion builds a standardized and long-term-supported distribution of the open source PX4 flight stack which is suitable for enterprise and commercial drone deployment. Jinger assists Auterion in their business development efforts.
Justin Chen, Banana Pi Project
Next up we had Justin Chen from the Banana Pi project (a joint initiative between Foxconn and SINOVOIP). Justin Chen is co-founder of Banana Pi, a set of single-board computers based on a variety of silicon parts which aim to help developers from around the world more rapidly and easily go from prototyping on Maker boards to full blow production. Many projects have started with Banana Pi and gone into high-volume deployment by working with Banana Pi. The Banana Pi family of single board computers have many different variants for a wide variety of developers depending on their needs. These projects range from voice, gateway, AI to educational toys and much more.
We also heard from Denis Chiang, sales manager for Silicon Labs Taiwan, who gave an overview of the wide variety of IoT products offered to the local ecosystem.
Following our initial presentations, we began our open-mic session and invited speakers from the local community to get on stage and begin sharing their projects. Speakers included:
One of the first to speak was Bruce Bateman, CTO of Liteon. Liteon is a 60,000 person company with its headquarters in Taipei with a long history of embedded, automotive, LED, smart city and IoT experience. Bruce operates Liteon’s Innovation Lab and shared with us some of his personal projects. The next week, I was able to get a tour of Liteon with Bruce and got to take a closer look at all the fascinating projects being worked on by Liteon.
Aike Mueller, Keezel
Aike Mueller of Keezel spoke about his product, a portable and secure Wi-Fi station to help you protect your privacy and security while traveling anywhere in the world.
Anshul Dayal, Neuromersiv
Neuromersiv CTO Anshul Dayal presented about their VR solution for immersive and engaging brain rehabilitation for stroke patients.
Animated Arm Innovator Program shirts
One of the fun parts of the Arm Innovator Tour Taipei was the debut of the Arm Innovator Program animated t-shirt. We handed out more than 40 of these shirts to developers who attended and presented at our event including Women in IoT (pictured below).
See a video of how the shirt works.
Taipei's Women in IoT group demonstrate the blinky shirt
We had a great time in Taiwan experiencing the culture, witnessing the innovation, meeting the local tech community and hearing all about their projects. We hope to return to Taipei soon, thanks for reading.
If you’re interested to learn more about the Innovator Program, or if you’d like to share your innovation based on Arm technologies, click on the link below.
Learn more about the Arm Innovator Program
Thank you to everyone that joined us in Taipei