Minutes of the 32nd steering committee meeting

The meeting took place the 5th June 2018 at Dolní Břežany (Czech Republic) organized by ELI Beamlines.

Presence: All institutes where represented: 9 in local + SKA-SA in remote

Proposal of ELI Beamlines to become member in 2018  

 Decision: Unanimous vote: accepted:   ELI Beamlines is welcome as contributing member.
 The contract will be sent for signature as soon as ELI Beamlines have provided the names of the responsible people.

Budget 2017

Andy Götz presented the 2017 budget report. We discussed each point.

Decision: Unanimous vote: accepted

Discussion about general purpose device servers

This item was on the budget 2017 and had not been executed, it was back again on the 2018 budget. DESY representative disagreed with the need to do this development arguing that each institute have different needs and prefers adapting the general purpose device server. However the majority of the representatives thought that such a list of general purpose device servers are useful for the new comers and can be used as examples of good coding style and high quality device servers to be followed. However, the specification were not clear enough.

Decision: A survey will be organized to agree on a reduced list of device classes to be re-developed and a list of features.

Core members contribution

Each representative of the core members presented the in-kind contribution for the community.

 ESRF , ALBA, ESRF and SOLEIL exposed their contribution. Soleil said that they have difficulty to engage enough human resources for the in-kind contribution. Therefore the representative proposed to increase it's financial contribution to compensate for the lack of in-kind contribution. This point has not been voted on officially.

Decision: We suggest to discuss it by email.

Discussion about support 

ESRF exposed the statistics answering on the forum. It is noted that the answers to the forum are coming mainly from very few active members. This is mainly due to the fact that many experts have not subscribed to all new forum posts and therefore are not even aware of the posts. It was requested to each representative to ask their staff to subscribe to all forums.

Decision: The coordinator will send a reminder to the mailing-list with a link on the subscription page.

Kernel development

The kernel group meets regularly via appear.in to follow-up the kernel development. The road-map is discussed and decisions taken on the different tasks to address in priority. Andy regretted of the lack of representative of some core members in this group. Alba proposed to provide a list of issues to address in priority in PyTango.

Decision: It has been agreed that the minutes of these meeting will be published on the GitHub tango-controls repository to be available to all. It has been decided also that the date of the kernel meetings will be announced at least 1 week in advance to allow interested people to join.

Proposal: Solaris proposed to increase it's contribution by 1 FTE for the community and to contribute in-kind as a core members.This initiative was welcomed by the Steering Committee.

Follow-up actions: We will promote Solaris as core member. Alba proposed a technical enhancement of the Blackbox feature to measure the performance online.

Long term contracts

The difficulty to setup multi-annual contracts for kernel development, maintenance and support has been discussed. The main difficulty being to specify the tasks in a generic manner to be able to adapt to the evolving needs of the members.

Proposal: Soleil and MAXIV proposed to contribute to the writing of these contracts because they have experience with these kind of long-term contracts in their institutes. It has been agreed that the wording "Technical  assistance" should be used instead of "outsourcing development" .

Budget 2018

The budget 2018 had been distributed to all the delegates by email and discussed. It has been presented during the meeting for official vote. Thorsten pointed out that DESY was forgotten on the voting results. The coordinator will correct this.

Decision: The budget as proposed has been voted unanimously.

Cost of hosting the collaboration

ESRF exposed that there is hidden costs in hosting the collaboration. These are mainly for accounting, finances department, purchasing office and the animation tasks which require significant  resources. ESRF proposed to charge 10% of the budget for this purpose as compensation and in order to make this sustainable.

Decision: The principle of charging 10% of the budget by ESRF has been accepted unanimously. This will start in 2019.

OpenCPPS H2020 call participation

Andy exposed the participation of the ESRF, as host of TANGO-controls consortium to a H2020 call named OpenCPPS.(Open Platform for Achieving Zero Defect in Flexible Connected Cyber-Physical-Production-Systems).the objective of openCPPS is to provide an open platform to support production networks’ zero-defect processes and provide trust in the involved stakeholders.  openCPPS is focusing on the “grand challenge” of Excellence in Manufacturing Networks, with the gravity on enabling zero-defect processes in the network. This project is ported by several big comanies such as Peugeot Citroen, Ford, Pratt&Witney, the french CEA. Tango is foreseen to be used in the interprocess communication layer in these new types of factories.The total budget of the call is of 16M€ and the part allocated to the TANGO is of 100 to 150K€. This project has been submitted in may. the decision will be taken within 5 months

Next Tango meeting

We discussed 3 proposals - Pune (India), St Petersburg (Russia) and Hamburg (Germany). After discussions we agreed on the fact that for visa issue it is reasonable to do it in Germany but that the India offer would allow to show a regional presence in Asia. SKAO representatives think that such a meeting may have a big attendance from the region.

Decision: The next Tango annual meeting will be organised by DESY and take place in June 2019 in Hamburg . An Asian TANGO meeting will also be organized by SKA with participation of few members of the collaboration.