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Back to face to face at MLUG!

It was great to be back in a room with our MLUGers, it has been a very long time since we were able to do that and we went into it with a little bit of trepidation! But, we are glad that we made the move and were able to also deliver the event online to enable all of those who have been with us virtually for the last 3 years, to continue joining in. We learnt some lessons along the way as well to help us make a hybrid event even better next time. 

We had an absolutely packed agenda for this one, with four presenters and some hardware to have a play around with. 

Stefan Lemmens from Jaga Climate Designers kicked us off, dialing in remotely from Belgium. As a regular MLUG attendee since we went online, and a long standing LabVIEW user it was great to hear from him about ways in which package requirements can be managed. It was great to hear about a tool not commonly associated with the LabVIEW community and how Stefan utilised it. He has very kindly shared his presentation with us for those who want to revisit it, or weren't able to attend.

We then had four in person presenters, here's a round up:

Tom McQuillan from JKI, gave the group a "LabVIEW Update" covering a "What's New" in LabVIEW 2023 sharing some interesting new features, then wrapping up with some LabVIEW tips. The tips pulled out some that we'd not known about previously and others that we'd forgotten about, but will definitely be revisiting!

Chris Knight from Beckhoff Automation introduced us to their TwinCAT OS, a PC based automation platform which allows users to make use of standard PLC languages on the same platform that can implement MATLAB, C++ and LabVIEW. It was great to hear about a real implementation of the integration between LabVIEW and Beckhoff hardware. Nice to see how easy it is too!

Nick Powley from NI was up next with a demonstration of how CODESYS IDE can be used to interact with NI FPGA running on an NI Linux Real-Time CompactRIO. This allows engineers to use the IEC 61131-3 standard with customisable and modular NI hardware to allow for the integration of specialised I/O. This was a quick fire presentation, agiain with a practical example with hardware in the room, showing how the IEC standard can be paried up with cRIO controllers.

Finally, our very own Craig Walker talked through the solution he had developed to solve the Day 9 Advent of Code challenge that relates to tracking the movements of a rope based on a list of instructions. It was aninsightful demonstration of how some of the details had been coded and some good discussion around some of the challenges relating to execution speed.

This was a great return to in-person MLUG, thank you to all of the presenters, to those who attended in person and online, and to Rolls-Royce Controls for hosting us. The recordings of the presentations are now available on our YouTube channel, so go and catch up now!

Our next meeting is pencilled in for 5th July 2023 from 12.30pm. We are talking to a couple of venues, so our hybrid approach may continue but if not we will be online. If you are interested in presenting please get in touch.

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