Open Compute Project

Hack Hardware with OCP at the GigaOM Structure Conference

Wednesday, June 05, 2013 · Posted by at 9:00 AM

Have a great idea for innovating data center technologies? Then join us for our second-ever hardware hackathon on June 18, 2013, at the GigaOM Structure conference. Your idea can win a $10,000 prize if it's best positioned to become a venture-backed startup.

In addition to the prize money, the Open Compute Foundation is partnering with a team of angel investors and venture capitalists who will work with you to formulate your initial idea into a business plan.

Or if you would rather not receive the funding, the foundation will issue a patent for the winning hack in your name.

Winners will present their hacks and receive their prizes on stage at GigaOM Structure on June 19th.

Like the first hackathon at the OCP Summit in Santa Clara this past January, Upverter and GrabCAD will be there to assist you in designing your project.

Sign up for the hackathon at Upverter's site. To join the discussion on OCP hackthons, join the OCP Hack 2013 group on Facebook.

We look forward to hosting you at the hackathon on June 18th.

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OCP Taiwan Chapter Launches

Monday, June 17, 2013 · Posted by at 10:59 AM

The Open Compute Project community keeps growing! We're excited to welcome the OCP Taiwan chapter, which launched May 23, 2013. It's the second international chapter, after OCP Japan.

OCPT, through its founding member Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), will set up an OCP Certification Lab in Taiwan. The lab will certify that submissions to the Open Compute Foundation adhere to the agreed upon community standards set out by the Compliance and Interoperability project.

The OCP VP of Channel Development, Charlie Manese, participated in the launch event.

The chapter plans to start certifying submissions once construction on the lab is completed.

OCP Taiwan launch

T.C. Chiueh, Richard Lee and Charlie Manese at the OCPT launch. 

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Results from the Second OCP Hardware Hackathon

Thursday, June 20, 2013 · Posted by at 1:00 AM

More than 60 hackers came from across the country and around the world to the Facebook campus this week to hack hardware designs at the second Open Compute Hardware Hackathon. The winning entry, a mesh network debugging tool, was announced at the GigaOm Structure conference and the team took home $10,000 in seed funding to further develop their project.

The hackathon was conducted in the spirit of the three pillars that support the work of OCP:



    1. Engaging an entrepreneurial demographic.


    1. Developing venture capital participation.


    1. Creating academic engagement from a research, IP contribution and hack participation perspective.


In the space of 12 hours, teams formed, concepts were fleshed out as designs, and in some cases, circuit boards were fabricated on the spot in minutes. This was made possible through support from Upverter, Tempo Automation and TechShop, whose collaboration allowed hackers to upload designs through Upverter which were then etched onto boards with Tempo Automation's maker box; TechShop provided the laser cutter for the templates and a toaster oven to solder the board.

The wide variety of designs submitted included:



    • Creating a mesh network debugging tool.


    • Extending robotics into the data center for lights-out operations.


    • Fetching data from a car's on-board diagnostic tool in real time.


    • Porting HipHop to create a cluster of 32-port ARM-based servers, using LLVM to translate from x86 to ARM.


    • Reading drivers' brain waves to detect erratic and drowsy driving.


    • Writing a BIOS configuration tool.


The entries were novel and well-thought out. In the end, the team behind the mesh network debugging tool won first prize, for submitting the most complete design.

Two other teams deserve mentioning however. The team behind the ARM servers was comprised mostly of winners of the Thiel 20 Under 20 fellowship.

The team behind the real-time car diagnostics met for the first time at the hackathon. They came up with their idea and a board design and managed to design and tape out the board during the hackathon.

The prize money was donated by SKTA Innopartners, with a matching grant from the Open Compute Foundation.

We'll have another hackathon later this year. Look for the announcements on this blog and the Facebook group.

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