2008/12/16

NEW NET Issues List for 16 Dec 2008

Below is the final list of issues for the TUESDAY, 16 December 2008, NEW NET (Northeast Wisconsin Network for Economy and Technology) 7:00 - 9:00 pm weekly gathering. This week we're upstairs at Tom's Drive In, 501 N Westhill Blvd, Appleton, Wisconsin, USA.

The ‘net

1. Windows Live Sync is live http://windowslivesync.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!199052A6C7EC2780!135.entry “…Windows Live Sync is now available for Windows and the Mac…Sync will continue to offer the same great service as FolderShare, along with several new features…Higher file limits—up to 20 synchronized folders (formerly known as libraries) with up to 20,000 files in each one…”

2. MapQuest Local adds jobs http://blog.mapquest.com/2008/12/11/mapquest-local-gets-more-social-with-twitter-adds-jobs/ “…Another piece of content…is the addition of a widget by AOL Careers through their partnership with CareerBuilder.com. The Careers widget will store up to five different sets of search keywords for job searches. When you change your location, it'll go out and pull in job matches in that area. It's useful content whether you're actively searching for a new gig or just curious what's going on in the local job market…”

3. The Future of the Internet III http://pewinternet.org/PPF/r/270/report_display.asp “…key findings on the survey of experts by the Pew Internet & American Life Project that asked respondents to assess predictions about technology and its roles in the year 2020: The mobile device will be the primary connection tool to the internet for most people in the world in 2020…Voice recognition and touch user-interfaces with the internet will be more prevalent and accepted by 2020. Those working to enforce intellectual property law and copyright protection will remain in a continuing arms race, with the crackers who will find ways to copy and share content without payment. The divisions between personal time and work time and between physical and virtual reality will be further erased for everyone who is connected, and the results will be mixed in their impact on basic social relations…”

4. Google Friend Connect & Twitter http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/google_brings_twitter_to_friend_connect.php “…Google announced that it is also adding support for Twitter to Friend Connect. Now, when you join a 'Friend Connected' site, you get the option to connect your Twitter and Google accounts. This allows you to discover all your Twitter friends who are also members of this site…Google is clearly locked in a battle with Facebook Connect, and thanks to this Twitter integration, Friend Connect now feels a bit more like Facebook Connect, as your actual friends are shown separately from the other members of the site…”

5. SlideShare Sends PowerPoint To The Cloud With New Plugin http://tinyurl.com/6ebo44 “…SlideShare, a startup that we’ve likened to a YouTube equivalent for PowerPoint presentations, has released a new plugin for Microsoft Office 2007 that allows users to edit and publish presentations directly to their SlideShare accounts…Beyond publishing new PowerPoint documents to the web, the SlideShare plugin can import SlideShare files from the cloud…which can then be modified on your native PowerPoint client…Other players in this space include Scribd, DocStoc, and SlideRocket (a cloud-based PowerPoint alternative)…”

6. Australia OKs Facebook for serving lien notice http://tinyurl.com/64g4r6 (SFGate) “…A court in Australia has approved the use of Facebook, a popular social networking Web site, to notify a couple that they lost their home after defaulting on a loan. The Australian Capital Territory Supreme Court last Friday approved lawyer Mark McCormack's application to use Facebook to serve the legally binding documents after several failed attempts to contact the couple at the house and by e-mail…”

7. Tina Reinvents the Web http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/12/15/AR2008121500711.html “…The woman who transformed Vanity Fair and the New Yorker, only to crash and burn with Talk magazine, is reinventing herself yet again. In launching the Daily Beast, the celebrity editor who once fussed over each headline and photo is trying to adapt to the relentless pace of the blabosphere…We like a hit of Britney but not much. I want to know far more about Mumbai and Larry Summers and what's happening at the Federal Reserve…Barry Diller…says he is "quite surprised" at the quick start. "I thought we would take six months to get to the point where you could actually even say, 'Look at us.' I thought there would be a very long incubation period…Diller…says he doesn't expect to make a dime on the venture for two to three years, if then. "If you say, 'Can today's online economics support a venture like this,' the answer is no. But if you say we're at the beginning of developing new advertising methods online, then the answer is profoundly yes…”

Security, Privacy & Digital Controls

8. Hole exploit endangers all IE versions http://news.cnet.com/8301-10805_3-10122203-75.html “…An unpatched security hole in Internet Explorer that is being exploited affects all versions of the browser, making it more serious than originally believed when it was first publicized two days ago…The company recommends setting the Internet zone security setting to "high" and using access control lists to disable Ole32db.dll to provide the most effective protection against an attack…The exploit sites we've seen so far drop a wide variety of malware--most commonly password stealers like new variants of game password stealers like Win32/OnLineGames, and Win32/Lolyda; keyloggers like Win32/Lmir; trojan horse applications like Win32/Helpud along with some previously unseen malware…”

9. Jobless techies turning to crime http://www.silicon.com/financialservices/0,3800010322,39363838,00.htm?r=7 “…Impoverished techies and IT workers who have been made redundant will go rogue in 2009, selling corporate data and using crimeware, reports predict. The credit crunch will drive IT workers to increasingly use their skills to steal credit card data using phishing attacks and to abuse their privileged corporate computer access to sell off valuable financial and intellectual information, forensic experts have warned…”

Mobile Computing & Communicating

10. MIT students build mobile applications in 13 weeks http://tinyurl.com/5rnhu9 (CruchGear) “…MIT professor Hal Abelson started today’s final presentation for the school’s “Building Mobile Applications” class by saying, “A course like this couldn’t have existed ten years ago… maybe not even a year ago. Courses like this right now are unique, but in two years they’ll be completely ordinary.” What’s extraordinary is that on top of a full college course-load at one of the most challenging schools in the country, these groups of students built fully working mobile applications for Windows Mobile, Android, and Symbian devices while mentors from the likes of Google, Nokia, Bank of America, and Microsoft oversaw their progress…”

11. Palm Expected to Launch Next-Gen OS http://tech.yahoo.com/news/zd/234943 “…Palm finally seems prepared to launch its next-generation operating system in January…could prove to be the launch venue for Palm's next-generation operating system, which the company has promised since October 2007…The new OS would replace Palm OS 5, now more than six years old…”

12. Fixing Windows Mobile http://news.cnet.com/8301-13846_3-10121158-62.html “…I had some time to kill yesterday down in Palo Alto so I went to the Apple store and played with the iPhone…and then to the AT&T store to check out the Blackberry Bold…then to T-mobile to look at the Android again…I took a look at several phones running Windows Mobile…I still struggle to see why Microsoft hasn't fixed the user experience and the odd quirks if they want to be truly competitive. Microsoft is losing on mobile phones to Apple and Google and doesn't even come close to usurping Symbian's place. And as BusinessWeek points out "To keep up, it needs touch displays, mobile cloud computing, and its own app store." True, but it's hard to see how these additional features will address the basic problem that the operating system is underwhelming and occasionally downright terrible…”

13. $99 From Acer, RadioShack, AT&T http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2336765,00.asp “…Acer and RadioShack have launched a netbook…The Acer Aspire one netbook is priced at just $99, but only for customers who sign up for a two-year contract with AT&T, which is providing the wireless data connection for the netbook's integrated 3G connnection. AT&T's wireless data plans start at $60 per month, which means consumers will pay little up front, but $1,440 over the two-year contract…”

14. iPhone: Microsoft Seadragon Mobile http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/microsoft_iphone_app_seadragon_mobile.php “…the first Microsoft app released for the iPhone…Seadragon…allows users to quickly zoom into extremely high resolution - "giga-pixel" - images…With Seadragon, you're going to have the opportunity to zoom into art, historical images, maps, NASA images, and more. Seadragon is actually an underlying technology, designed to support services like Photosynth that require dealing with massive amounts of image data…The aim of Seadragon is nothing less than to change the way we use screens, from wall-sized displays all the way down to cell phones, so that graphics and photos are smoothly browsed, regardless of the amount of data or the bandwidth of the network…”

15. Can Microsoft make its future mobile? http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/7766699.stm “…as the market for high-end mobiles gets ever more crowded, which should you pick?...Symbian, makes the software that runs most of Nokia's smart phones (and a few others)…Research in Motion with its e-mail friendly Blackberry devices…Apple…with its sleek but expensive iPhone…Google entered the field with its Linux-based Android software…then there is Microsoft. For years the giant of desktop computing has tried to push into the mobile phone market - not without success, but ultimately remaining a niche player. Two things held Microsoft back in the past: technology and usability. For years mobile phone technology simply wasn't advanced enough to play to the strengths of devices that were actually mini computers…the real Achilles heel of Microsoft's devices was their abysmal user interface - firmly wedded to the look and feel of old-fashioned computer desktops, a concept that doesn't work on small screens…another problem plaguing most smartphones: a slick interface requires serious hardware…This is not just a Windows problem, though…Like all microcomputers masquerading as phones, Windows smartphones are power hungry. Intense usage - phone calls, web browsing, music and office applications - quickly drains the battery. Here at least Windows devices can play a trump card over Apple's iPhone: their batteries are not sealed in and can be swapped easily for back-ups…”

16. Qualcomm aims chip at tiny, always-on laptop http://news.cnet.com/8301-13924_3-10123149-64.html “…Qualcomm's four-year, $350 million effort to design a chip that goes into small notebooks and handhelds will come to fruition next year when device makers deliver products based on the Snapdragon processor…"Our vision is that (the device is) always connected. Even when you shut it down, it's still 'on.' (The laptop) goes to your Exchange server, gets your e-mail, puts it on the drive--solid-state or hard drive--and then when you're ready to do e-mail, you flip it open and it's right there. Instant on, always connected," Gill said. "The question is, can you enable the same value proposition on an Intel platform?" Gill's answer, not surprisingly, is no. "Two or three hours later the battery's just completely drained out. You cannot rely on it to be there all day long in your bag and still getting all your e-mail." And Snapdragon contains the technology that will enable Qualcomm to build an un-Intel, un-Netbook type of device, Gill claims…”

Open Source

17. Linux - Stop holding our kids back http://linuxlock.blogspot.com/2008/12/linux-stop-holding-our-kids-back.html “…observed one of my students with a group of other children gathered around his laptop. Upon looking at his computer, I saw he was giving a demonstration of some sort. The student was showing the ability of the laptop and handing out Linux disks. After confiscating the disks I called a confrence with the student and that is how I came to discover you and your organization. Mr. Starks, I am sure you strongly believe in what you are doing but I cannot either support your efforts or allow them to happen in my classroom. At this point, I am not sure what you are doing is legal. No software is free and spreading that misconception is harmful. These children look up to adults for guidance and discipline. I will research this as time allows and I want to assure you, if you are doing anything illegal, I will pursue charges as the law allows. Mr. Starks, I along with many others tried Linux during college and I assure you, the claims you make are grossly over-stated and hinge on falsehoods…”

18. Character-Assasinations-Ain't-Us http://linuxlock.blogspot.com/2008/12/character-assasinations-aint-us.html [follow-up to above post about “Stop holding our kids back”]

19. Essential Freeware for Businesses: Part I http://tinyurl.com/5tcdbp (Enterpriser) “…There are loads of freeware available today, some of which are better than their shareware counterparts. In this first-of-a-three-part series on free software, here is a list of productivity tools that enable you to be more efficient at work and at the same time save money…”

SkyNet

20. Google Chrome Goes Gold With 1.0 Release http://tinyurl.com/6duf2d (InformationWeek) “…Google's Chrome Web browser for Windows is no longer beta software. The company released Chrome 1.0 on Thursday, a mere 3-1/2 months after its initial release. That's the blink of an eye compared with Gmail's gestation in beta, which began in April 2004 and continues to this day. And the speed at which Google is moving underscores Chrome's strategic value to the company…Unlike other browsers, Chrome was designed to compartmentalize processes…One of the cool things about the multiprocess architecture and the sandboxing is that we can run plug-ins in their own separate process, which is great," Rakowski continued. "It provides some insulation for security purposes but also for stability…Firefox is now used by over 20% of Internet users worldwide, according to Net Applications. Chrome's market share is 0.83% at the moment, down from the surge of interest that took it to 1% market share when it was first released. According to Rakowski, there are 10 million people using Chrome…”

21. Gmail Adds Text Messaging (Again) http://www.pcworld.com/article/155317/gmail_adds_text_messaging_again.html “…Google has reintroduced its text messaging service for Gmail after a failed launch in late October. Once again, Gmail users will be able to send text messages to their friends' cell phones right from their email window using the SMS protocol. For the moment, Google says you can only send texts to U.S.-based cell phone numbers…”

22. Google off list of 20 most trusted companies http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/12/15/BU7F14N56T.DTL “…Facebook, Apple, Yahoo, Verizon and FedEx for the first time have made an annual ranking of the top 20 most trusted companies in the United States. Google, however, dropped off the list…”

General Technology

23. Movage http://www.kk.org/thetechnium/archives/2008/12/movage.php “…Digital information is very easy to copy within short periods of time, but very difficult to copy over long periods of time. That is, it is very easy to make lots of copies now, but very difficult to get the data to copy over a century... The only way to archive digital information is to keep it moving. I call this movage instead of storage. Proper movage means transferring the material to current platforms on a regular basis -- that is, before the old platform completely dies, and it becomes hard to do…”

24. Faster Charging, Longer Lasting Notebook Battery http://blog.wired.com/gadgets/2008/12/hp-promises-no.html “…HP has partnered with battery innovation startup Boston-Power to offer the latter's faster charging, lower degrade lithium-ion battery cells as an upgrade option to HP customers in early 2009. The cells charge faster than current Li-ion batteries, and don't lose capacity over time…The value proposition that we offer is a product that shows four to five times the run time of any other Li-ion battery in the industry," says Christina Lampe-Önnerud, founder and CEO of Boston-Power. "It doesn't fade and you can have it for three years instead of the six months that batteries today start fading at…”

25. Buy an iPod Touch, get a $50 gift card http://news.cnet.com/8301-13845_3-10122962-58.html “…second-generation iPod Touch (8GB): $229. Best Buy's offering a $50 gift card with the purchase of the 8GB Touch. That's a pretty solid deal if you're planning to do more shopping at Best Buy anyway…”

26. Good news for wind, bad for ethanol in major energy study http://tinyurl.com/5vhvxb (Ars technica) “…The review pits twelve combinations of electric power generation and vehicular motivation against each other. It is a battle royal of nine electric power sources, three vehicle technologies, and two liquid fuel sources. It rates each combination based on eleven categories. And it was all compiled by one man, Mark Jacobson, professor of civil and environmental engineering at Stanford University…Wind power emerged as the overall victor. When teamed with battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, it claimed the top two spots by winning seven of the eleven categories. Photovoltaics are an unexpected also-ran, failing to make the top five. Politically favored ethanol stands out as the big loser of the study, falling behind "clean coal," a technology many consider a dead end…”

27. No Steve Jobs keynote at this year’s Macworld — which will be Apple’s last http://tinyurl.com/6lvvqc (VentureBeat) “…This will be Apple’s last appearance at Macworld and chief executive Steve Jobs will not be giving the keynote. Let me repeat: Steve Jobs will not be giving the keynote at the event that is traditionally Apple’s largest of the year…Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of product marketing, give the keynote. It’s impossible to mention this without re-starting the speculation about Jobs’ health and/or Apple having nothing major to unveil at the show…”

Leisure & Entertainment

28. Can the iPhone beat the DS in the handheld gaming war? http://news.cnet.com/8301-13506_3-10121135-17.html “…Apple's list of the top App Store downloads of 2008 reveals a staggering trend: video games dominate…Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch have proven extremely successful and given that success, it's not unreasonable to believe that both devices' sales will easily outstrip the current handheld gaming leader, the Nintendo DS…consider the possibility of Apple (yes, Apple), controlling the handheld gaming market and stealing it away from the company that has dominated it since its inception: Nintendo…although it may be difficult for some Nintendo apologists to believe that the DS could fall victim to the iPhone, it is within the realm of possibility. Well, that is, if you believe the iPhone and iPod Touch are "real" handheld gaming devices…”

29. Nintendo Wii: Facing the Inevitable http://seekingalpha.com/article/110690-nintendo-wii-facing-the-inevitable “…For two years now analysts have been predicting the imminent demise of the Wii…there are a few reasons why what we are seeing now is the end of the boom…the Wii is now selling in massively unsustainable numbers…penetration of HDTVs has increased massively over the last two years…cruelly exposing the Wii’s last generation graphics to far more people…The Xbox 360…has far more games and vastly more good games…The Wii is not making much money for many publishers so they are voting with their feet and allocating their resources to platforms that will make them money…Most people likely to buy a Wii already have…we are experiencing the last big Christmas for the Wii…”

Economy and Technology

30. Intel needs to build car batteries, co-founder says http://www.tgdaily.com/content/view/40568/113/ “…Expanding its business beyond its core strength, microprocessors, has always been difficult for Intel. Trends have been followed and abandoned again in the past and now it is time to consider a new business field for the company, co-founder, former chairman and CEO Andy Grove says: Car batteries…he is apparently urging the current CEO Paul Otellini to take Intel go into the battery business…In the early 2000s, Intel tried to become a consumer electronics manufacturer with Intel-branded toys and MP3 players. The strategy was quickly shelved again. And more recently, Intel sold off business units that did not directly fit into its core business of microprocessors, chipsets and wireless chips anymore …”

31. BYD Adds Plug-In as China Gets Edge on Toyota, GM http://tinyurl.com/57j4hb (Bloomberg) “…BYD Co., the Chinese automaker backed by Warren Buffett, started selling the world’s first mass-produced plug-in hybrid, gaining an edge on Toyota Motor Corp. and General Motors Corp. in electric-powered vehicles. The F3 DM can run for 100 kilometers (62 miles) using only batteries…China is encouraging automakers to develop alternative-energy vehicles to curb oil imports and to help local companies challenge GM and Toyota, the world’s biggest hybrid-car maker, overseas…BYD…China’s biggest maker of rechargeable batteries, rose 16 percent to HK$13.32…The F3 DM’s batteries can be fully recharged from a power point in as little as seven hours and 50 percent powered via a quick charge at a specialist station in 10 minutes, BYD said. The car also has a gasoline engine as a back-up power source…”

32. Small Businesses Struggle With Search Marketing http://tinyurl.com/6j23r6 (SearchEngineLand) “…Microsoft just released results of a survey of 400 small businesses (SMBs) that shows they continue to struggle with search marketing (how to think about it, how to do it)…even those with websites. The search engines want to reach this massive market directly but have found it very difficult to do so without working with established sales channels and partners (newspapers, yellow pages, webhosts, etc.) that have existing SMB relationships…While progressive SMBs and “e-tailers” were among the first to adopt paid search as a direct response medium, the majority of small businesses are mystified by the mechanics — the “how” — of search and need simple tools and/or third party help…”

Civilian Aerospace

33. Virgin Galactic 'mothership' to take first flight http://tinyurl.com/63nbz2 (NewScientist) “…Virgin Galactic's WhiteKnightTwo is set to take is maiden flight in the next two weeks. The flight will be the first of dozens planned for the high-altitude craft…Since WhiteKnightTwo's unveiling in July, the plane has passed engine and runway tests and taken small hops off the ground. The vehicle, which was developed at Scaled Composites in Mojave, California, is now ready to take off, says Virgin Galactic president Will Whitehorn. "The first flight test will happen very quietly, as these things tend to do, but it will be before Christmas…”

34. To the Heavens From the Jungle’s Edge http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/14/weekinreview/14romero.html “…The driving force behind Kourou’s [French Guiana] development is Arianespace, a French company that began as a poor cousin to NASA nearly three decades ago. Today, it has edged past Boeing and Lockheed Martin to become the leading player in the $3.2 billion commercial-satellite-launching industry; it accounts for about half of all the tonnage sent into orbit for business purposes each year. That pales, of course, alongside the bigger business of military and government satellite launches, which the United States and Russia still lead. But it does include the launching of commercial satellites that transmit the data for a globalized economy, as well as for satellite broadcast, Internet and Earth-imaging tools. And in that, the Americans are no longer in charge…”

35. NASA and Ad Astra: plasma rocket engine test on ISS http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=27179 “…The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Ad Astra Rocket Company of Webster, Texas have entered into a Space Act Agreement that could lead to conducting a space flight test of the Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR(TM)) engine on the International Space Station (ISS). The VASIMR(TM) engine is a new plasma-based space propulsion technology, initially studied by NASA and currently under commercial development by Ad Astra…Ad Astra is developing the VF-200 payload entirely with funds from private investors…”

36. Three more competitors for Google Lunar X Prize http://news.cnet.com/8301-17912_3-10121056-72.html “…the X Prize Foundation…will introduce two new Google Lunar X Prize teams to its already weighty roster of 14 competitors…Team LunaTrex will also have an announcement to make at that time, according to the foundation. Then on Wednesday, Google and the X Prize Foundation plan to reveal the "true identities" of the "Mystery Team," whose members have been blogging about their competition experience…”

Supercomputing & GPUs

37. Inside Tsubame - the Nvidia GPU Supercomputer http://tinyurl.com/62h7gf (PCWorld) “…When you enter the computer room on the second floor of Tokyo Institute of Technology's computer building, you're not immediately struck by the size of Japan's second-fastest supercomputer…Tsubame was ranked 29th-fastest supercomputer in the world in the latest Top 500 ranking with a speed of 77.48T Flops (floating point operations per second) on the industry-standard Linpack benchmark…The interesting thing about Tsubame is that it doesn't rely on the raw processing power of CPUs (central processing units) alone to get its work done. Tsubame includes hundreds of graphics processors of the same type used in consumer PCs, working alongside CPUs…Graphics processors (GPUs)…make short work of some problems in areas such as molecular dynamics, physics simulations and image processing…Tsubame uses 680 of Nvidia's Tesla graphics cards. Just how much of a difference do the GPUs make? Takayuki Aoki, a professor of material chemistry at the university, said that simulations that used to take three months now take 10 hours on Tsubame…Tsubame…is largely made up of rack-mounted Sun x4600 systems. There are 655 of these in all, each of which has 16 AMD Opteron CPU cores inside it, and Clearspeed CSX600 accelerator boards. The graphics chips are contained in 170 Nvidia Tesla S1070 rack-mount units that have been slotted in between the Sun systems. Each of the 1U Nvidia systems has four GPUs inside, each of which has 240 processing cores for a total of 960 cores per system…”

38. GPGPU opens up with OpenCL 1.0 spec release http://tinyurl.com/66c6yg (Ars technica) “…OpenCL is a so-called "GPGPU" specification that enables programmers to tap the power of the GPU as a data-parallel coprocessor without having to learn to speak the specialized language of graphics, i.e., OpenGL or a DirectX flavor…Apple and NVIDIA collaborated heavily on the development of OpenCL, but (as its name implies) the standard is open and has been vetted and put out under the auspices of the Khronos Group, a consortium of companies that have banded together to develop and promote royalty-free media APIs. AMD has also promised OpenCL support on its hardware; Intel is a Khronos Group member, so it will presumably support OpenCL with Larrabee…”

39. Heterogeneous Compilers Ready for Takeoff http://tinyurl.com/5dxlvp (HPCwire) “…The second wave of GPGPU software development tools is upon us. The first wave, exemplified by NVIDIA's CUDA and AMD's Brook+, allowed early adopters to get started with GPU computing via low-level, vendor-specific tools. Next generation tools…enable everyday C and Fortran programmers to tap into GPU acceleration within an integrated heterogeneous computing environment…Since GPUs are attached to the host platform as external devices rather than as true coprocessors, the low-level software model is quite complex. From the host side, it involves data transfers between the CPU and the GPU (over PCIe), memory allocation/deallocation, and other low-level device management. On the GPU side, the code can also be fairly involved, since it has to deal with algorithm parallelization and the GPU's own memory hierarchy. To make GPUs programming more productive, it's worthwhile to hide most of these details from the application developer…”

40. A GPU and Accelerator Programming Model http://tinyurl.com/6n8lqb (HPCwire) “…can we come up with a different model of GPU and accelerator programming, one that retains most of the advantages of CUDA or OpenCL, but without requiring complete program rewrites, that can be applied to different target accelerators, and that retains the potential to develop and test in a more accessible environment? In short, a model that allows HPC programmers to focus on domain science instead of on computer science?... current GPUs implement a particularly weak model. In particular, they don't support memory coherence between threads, unless those threads are parallel only at the synchronous level and the memory operations are separated by an explicit barrier. Otherwise, if one thread updates a memory location and another reads the same location, or two threads store a value to the same location, the hardware does not guarantee the results. You can't say it gets the wrong answers, because such programs are defined as being in error. There is a software-managed cache on a GPU, and there are some hardware caches that can be used as well, but only in certain situations…”

41. OpenCL: To GPGPU and Beyond http://www.hpcwire.com/features/OpenCL-To-GPGPU-and-Beyond-36016144.html “…OpenCL is an important step in spurring the development of application for GPUs, because developers would like to accelerate their code on all available GPUs rather than locking them — and their customers — into one vendor's solution. However, OpenCL is a low-level standard when compared with other alternatives. For example, programmers will have to do their own memory management (unlike with CUDA), and overall OpenCL supports fewer productivity-enhancing abstractions. In the Khronos Group's own slide deck OpenCL is characterized as "approachable, but primarily targeted at expert developers." This means that OpenCL's benefits may come to application developers indirectly, through the tools community…”

42. Up Against the Memory Wall http://www.hpcwire.com/blogs/Up-Against-the-Memory-Wall-35999864.html “…the proliferation of cores is continuing to widen the gap between microprocessor performance and memory performance…The extent to which memory bandwidth and latency is limiting HPC performance overall is largely unknown…At SC08 last month, IDC reported that users are hitting the wall with multicore. If that's a generalized situation, it's going to get worse fast…the installed base of HPC systems is only about midway into its transition from single-core to multicore, with single-core CPU chips currently making up more than half of total processors. That was eight months ago, so we already may be past the tipping point. The report concludes the transition to multicore should be mostly completed within the next few years. That will happen if for no other reason than you won't be able to buy single-core processors. Intel's last one-core server chip was released over three years ago…”


*****

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