2009/03/24

NEW NET Issues List for 24 Mar 2009

Below is the final list of issues for the TUESDAY, 24 March 2009, 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.

This past week had quite a few news items related to parallel GPU programming and visual computing. The topic has not yet hit mainstream, but it does appear to be gaining momentum.

The ‘net

1. Major publishers partner with Scribd: viral e-book marketing http://blog.wired.com/business/2009/03/publishers-part.html “…publishers announced a wide-ranging partnership Wednesday with Scribd to begin to release an increased number of best sellers as free e-books — a major marketing push to harness the long tail of a literate social network that boasts some 50 million loyalists. The publishers have already been conducting trials for a few months, offering a few books (around 8-10) and some excerpts on a limited time basis. But this new partnership is a sign that they view the platform as much more than simply another testing ground, and that they plan to include a much greater flow of content which they hope will boost both print and e-book sales through e-book sharing and word of mouth on sites like Twitter. It's less about creating a new revenue stream for e-books on Scribd and more about enhancing existing print and e-book channels by using the crowd as the new tastemaker…”

2. Google-scanned e-books free for Sony Reader http://tinyurl.com/d7j649 (BusinessWeek) “…Amazon (AMZN) Chief Executive Jeff Bezos won't tell you how many Kindles he's sold, but he's happy to share the number of e-book titles available on the device: 250,000, at last count. With one fell swoop, a rival has made that library look small. On Mar. 19, Sony announced the addition of 500,000 titles to the collection of 100,000 e-books currently available to Sony Reader devices. Sony is giving away the books through a partnership with Google, which has already scanned and stored some 7 million books for its Google Book Search project…Many of Sony's free titles cost money on the Kindle. Kenneth Grahame's children's classic, The Wind in the Willows, will set the buyer back $2.39, for instance…the partnership underscores a key distinction between the Sony and Amazon strategies that in the long run could work to Amazon's advantage. Amazon, which recently began selling e-books to users of devices other than the Kindle, including Apple's iPhone, has shown it's as interested in selling digital books as it is in selling machines. Meantime, by loading its reader with free books, Sony may be more focused on devices. "Amazon's business is selling books, and Sony's business is selling hardware…”

3. Open source textbooks http://www.paidcontent.org/entry/419-open-source-textbook-firm-flat-world-knowledge-gets-8-million/ “…Bringing the freemium model to the musty world of textbook publishing, Flat World Knowledge (FWK), a Nyack, NY-based publisher of open-source commercial textbooks, has raised $8 million in its first round of funding…Other competitors in the space, each with their own twists, include FreeLoadPress and CourseSmart…”

4. Microsoft Releases Internet Explorer 8 http://tinyurl.com/dzox8r (InformationWeek) “…Microsoft will release the latest version of Internet Explorer at noon Eastern time on Thursday, bringing major changes in a bid to hold onto the browser's dominance and fend off an increasingly crowded field of browsers, including the still-surging Mozilla Firefox…Throughout the testing process, Microsoft has focused most heavily on two new usability features, Web Slices and Accelerators. Accelerators let users perform actions like translation, mapping, and search from the right-click context menu, which brings up a window inside the current page to show translated text, a map, or search results. Web Slices, which requires work on the part of site developers and therefore are still few and far between, let users create a link on their favorites bar, which brings up only a small portion of a Web site such as a condensed local weather forecast…” [IE 8 and web standards http://www.crn.com/software/215901381]

5. Businesses targeted with Skype For SIP http://news.cnet.com/8301-1001_3-10201830-92.html “…On Monday, Skype, which is owned by eBay, will announce a new version of its Internet calling service that allows companies to use their IP-enabled corporate phone systems to make Skype calls using regular office phones instead of using a headset that plug into a PC. The new service called Skype For SIP allows companies to use the Skype service with their IP-enabled PBX's…Skype has been trying to reach business customers for nearly three years. In 2006, it announced Skype for Business, which is designed for users who are too small to invest in building their own Internet Protocol telephony networks…But the latest announcement is targeted at companies that are larger than the small 10-person operation. These are companies that have already invested in a SIP-based PBX phone system…” [http://www.disruptivetelephony.com/2009/03/skype-tears-down-more-walls-with-skype-for-sip.html http://gigaom.com/2009/03/22/skype-now-means-business-friends-the-sip-world/]

Security, Privacy & Digital Controls

6. University of Michigan researchers want to figure out where the worm started http://tinyurl.com/ccjp2k (ComputerWorld) “…Where did the Conficker worm come from? Researchers at the University of Michigan are trying to find out, using a vast network of Internet sensors to track down the so-called "patient zero" of an outbreak that has infected more than 10 million computers to date. The university uses so-called darknet sensors that were set up about six years ago in order to keep track of malicious activity. With funding from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, computer scientists have banded together to share data collected from sensors around the world place sensors around the world…The goal is to get close enough so you can actually start mapping out how the spread started," said Jon Oberheide, a graduate student with the University of Michigan…To find the minuscule clues that will identify the victim, researchers must sift through more than 50 terabytes of data, hoping to find the telltale signatures of a Conficker scan…”

7. Gov,t employees told to use, banned from using, social networks http://techdirt.com/articles/20090318/0226244166.shtml “…the US military has been blocking access to YouTube, but set up a special alternative just for troops, called TroopTube. And, yet... it started blocking that site as well. It may just be a case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing, but it seems so common in government that it's really rather ridiculous. These tools, while they may be prone to misuse and time-wasting, are also becoming key ways that people communicate. For a supposedly more open and transparent government, allowing access is a necessity. Deal with the abuses separately, rather than making an outright ban

8. Hackers penetrating industrial control systems http://tinyurl.com/dcuujz (ComputerWorld) “The networks powering industrial control systems have been breached more than 125 times in the past decade, with one resulting in U.S. deaths, a control systems expert said Thursday…he's been able to find evidence of more than 125 control systems breaches involving systems in nuclear power plants, hydroelectric plants, water utilities, the oil industry and agribusiness. "The impacts have ranged from trivial to significant environmental damage to significant equipment damage to deaths," he told the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. "We've already had a cyber incident in the United States that has killed people…”

9. Deep Packet Inspection Puts Open Internet at Risk http://www.freepress.net/node/49008 “…The uncertainty surrounding Net Neutrality has given rise to a technology known as Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) that offers Internet service providers unprecedented control over Internet content…the emerging DPI business model, marketed for its ability to monitor, control and ultimately charge subscribers for every use of an Internet connection, poses a major threat to the open Internet…”

10. Botnet runs on DSL modems, routers http://blogs.pcmag.com/securitywatch/2009/03/new_botnet_runs_on_dsl_modems.php A fascinating new botnet has been found running on DSL modems and routers running an embedded Linux distribution. The worm is called "psyb0t" and appears to have been circulating since at least January, 2009. The worm infects any of a family of Linux Mipsel devices ("Mipsel" is the port of Debian Linux on MIPS processors) that contain one of several administration interfaces. The worm uses a dictionary attack against the admin interface…”

Mobile Computing & Communicating

11. Samsung N110 netbook http://www.laptopmag.com/review/laptops/samsung-n-110.aspx “…Samsung remains atop the heap with its new N110. Though this netbook's internal organs are the same as its predecessor, including a 1.6-GHz Intel Atom N270 processor, 1GB of RAM, Windows XP Home, and a 160GB hard drive, Samsung has extended the touchpad and increased the six-cell battery’s capacity to give this $469 netbook a lengthy 7 hours of runtime…Samsung left the keyboard on the N110 untouched. The 93 percent of full-size layout is comfortable, and the raised keys provided nice tactile feedback…the Samsung N110’s comfortable keyboard will satisfy even the fastest of touch typists…”

12. Peek Launches Business Emailer Handheld: The Pronto http://tinyurl.com/dljp62 (FastCompany) “…Peek's tiny handheld wireless e-mail gizmo has had a fascinating success story, and its modeled on a "simplicity versus complexity" ethic that sets it against the increasingly sophisticated Blackberry…It's likely to be a great success for two reasons. For starters, it's cheap. The unit costs just $80, and a monthly "no secret extra fees" account is just $20 for unlimited data…the device is mind-bogglingly simple: all the device does is let you read and send your e-mail on the fly and in a timely manner. When I got my first Blackberry that's essentially all I used the device for…After all, you don't want your corporate suits getting distracted with browsers and games do you?…”

13. Palm's Secret Weapon for the Pre http://www.businessweek.com/print/technology/content/mar2009/tc20090323_446801.htm “…Apple veterans such as engineer Mike Bell joined Palm, too. For one, there was more opportunity to make money on options—given Palm's beaten-down stock and Apple's sky-high shares. It was also a rare opportunity to work on a clean-sheet-of-paper project. "Apple is a mature company," Rubinstein, known as "Ruby," said in an interview with BusinessWeek late last year, likening Palm today to the sickly Apple he joined in 1996. "If we build a great product, people are going to care. For whatever reason, there's a lot of passion around Palm." Soon, veterans from companies including Silicon Graphics (SGIC), Nokia, and Microsoft came on board…Palm's team of veterans were motivated by the fact that no smartphone operating system had ever been built from the ground up for the modern smartphone—a powerful, general-purpose computing device that was fast becoming as central to consumers' lives as their PCs…Palm set out to create software that would require no synching with a PC, and that would solve problems only a phone in your pocket could solve…”

Open Source

14. TomTom countersues Microsoft http://news.cnet.com/8301-13505_3-10200948-16.html TomTom, sued earlier by Microsoft for patent infringement related to GPS technology and TomTom's implementation of Microsoft's FAT, or file allocation table, technology in Linux, is fighting back. Unfortunately, its countersuit relates to four of its GPS patents that it claims Microsoft infringes, not the Linux patents that have the open-source community up in arms…Despite my earlier concern that TomTom couldn't afford to fight Microsoft's allegations, it looks as if TomTom has found both the money and the will to fight. I just wish that it were fighting over FAT, not GPS…”

15. TomTom joins OIN http://tinyurl.com/c5xpko (ars technica) “…"Linux plays an important role at TomTom as the core of all our Portable Navigation Devices," said TomTom IP director Peter Spours in a statement. "We believe that by becoming an Open Invention Network licensee, we encourage Linux development and foster innovation in a technical community that benefits everyone…TomTom's decision to join the OIN as a licensee could potentially pave the way for a patent showdown between Microsoft and OIN over the FAT patents. At the very least, it could give TomTom more leverage in its patent negotiations with Microsoft…If Microsoft does decide to follow up its lawsuit against TomTom with lawsuits against other vendors, it would have very broad ramifications. This situation could potentially end up being the first test of the OIN's defensive patent portfolio…”

16. Firefox May Already Be Dead http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/161637/firefox_may_already_be_dead.html “…Google Chrome is now available in alpha for Linux, and I downloaded it for Ubuntu. Despite the fact that I was running it on my rather underpowered Dell Mini 9, it started in the blink of an eye. Additionally, any JavaScript-heavy sites like Gmail or Google Docs were so responsive that it's almost unbelievable. Does that sound familiar? That's right. It's just like how Firefox used to be. Run Chrome and Firefox side-by-side, and Firefox is embarrassingly slow. It's not even in the same league. It's an old man on the running track trying to compete against a sprightly 20-year-old. I think Firefox has lost the plot…” [another Chrome article -- http://blog.wired.com/business/2009/03/as-ms-pushes-ou.html]

17. MIT adopts OpenAccess mandate http://www.earlham.edu/~peters/fos/2009/03/mit-adopts-university-wide-oa-mandate.html This afternoon, the MIT faculty unanimously adopted a university-wide OA mandate. Here's the resolution the faculty approved (thanks to Hal Abelson, MIT professor of computer science and engineering, who chaired the committee to formulate it)…The Faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is committed to disseminating the fruits of its research and scholarship as widely as possible. In keeping with that commitment, the Faculty adopts the following policy: Each Faculty member grants to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology nonexclusive permission to make available his or her scholarly articles and to exercise the copyright in those articles for the purpose of open dissemination…”

18. gCalCron, Linux, Gcalendar http://lifehacker.com/5179566/gcalcron-automates-your-linux-system-with-google-calendar “…Linux only: gcalcron allows you to issue terminal commands to a computer through Google Calendar. It's more beginner-friendly than editing cron jobs or remote shell work , and great for remote download control…”

SkyNet

19. EPIC Threatens to Burst Google's Cloud http://www.technewsworld.com/story/security/66540.html Privacy rights organization EPIC, the Electronic Privacy Information Center More about Electronic Privacy Information Center, has asked the Federal Trade Commission More about Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to shut down Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) More about Google cloud services on grounds that the company is misleading consumers. This follows a breach in Google Docs on March 7, which was caused by a software bug that led users to inadvertently share some of their files with others. Google has since fixed the bug. EPIC's formal letter of complaint says that Google promises users their documents are stored securely and assures them that their documents, spreadsheets and presentations will remain private unless they publish these to the Web, or invite viewing or collaboration. On the other hand, it points out, Google's Terms of Service explicitly disavow any warranty or liability for harm that might result "from Google's negligence, recklessness, mal intent, or even purposeful disregard of existing legal obligations to protect the privacy and security of user data…”

20. Gmail’s Undo Send Isn’t Really Undo http://tinyurl.com/co33mq (ZoliBlog) “…First of all, I love Gmail, it’s my one-and-only email system. And I’m certainly glad to see the ever accelerating rate of enhancements, whether “official” or just the Labs variety. But oh, please, can we have some control here and call features what they really are?...Today we’re getting another new feature: Undo Send. Except that it really isn’t. Undo Send, that is. Undo Send is what Outlook has offered for ages: you can actually recall a message that had already been sent, provided the recipient has not opened it yet, and you’re both on Exchange. What Gmail offers now is a momentary delay of 5 seconds, during which you may just realize you’re emailing the wrong Smith or Brown, and hit the panic Undo button. It’s not really undo, since the message was never sent in the first place – Gmail was holding it for 5 seconds, if you had enabled this option…”

21. Google Summer of Code: It's About Passion Not Experience http://tinyurl.com/cjaaf4 (ReadWriteWeb) “…Now in its fifth year, the Summer of Code will match 1000 students to 150 mentors from around the globe, and give them a chance to work on project such as WordPress, Mozilla Project, GNOME, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Chromium, Creative Commons, Berkman Center at Harvard University…Google will debut Melange which comprises half workflow software, half content management software…Melange began as an open source program, managed by Google engineers when it was determined they needed to improve infrastructure. Paying homage to the science fiction world, the name Melange comes from the movie Dune and means 'spice of creation…Tips for Students…Try not to get intimidated: Passion counts more than experience…According to Hawthorn, it's very important to begin a dialogue with mentors. "Each mentor has included a list of ideas and it's a good idea to begin getting involved early…”

22. Map addresses in a Google spreadsheet http://news.cnet.com/8301-13880_3-10201764-68.html “…If you store street addresses in a spreadsheet, you can now plot those addresses on Google Maps in just seconds, with no programming required. And doing so won't cost you a cent--unless you volunteer a contribution to the people behind the Map A List beta service that makes it all possible…”

23. Call to 'shut down' Google Maps Street View in the UK http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/7959362.stm “…In July 2008, the ICO gave permission for Street View to launch partly because of assurances Google gave about the way it would blur faces and registration plates. Google has removed some images following complaints…Among them were a woman who had moved house to escape a violent partner but who was recognisable outside her new home on Street View. Also complaining were two colleagues pictured in an apparently compromising position who suffered embarrassment when the image was circulated at their workplace. The ICO said it had received the complaint from PI and would respond "shortly". It added: "It is Google's responsibility to ensure all vehicle registration marks and faces are satisfactorily blurred…”

24. Google: ‘Orion’ Technology, Longer Snippets http://tinyurl.com/ckw6e2 (SearchEngineLand) “…Google is announcing two changes to search results this morning. The first involves the use of longer “snippets” (text extracts containing the keywords) when users input queries of three words or more…The other and more significant change introduced today is based on the 2006 acquisition of “Orion.”…Take a search such as the American Revolution as an example of how the system works. Orion would bring up results with extracts containing this phrase. But it would also give results for American History, George Washington, American Revolutionary War, Declaration of Independence, Boston Tea Party and more…”

General Technology

25. First Flight Brings Terrafugia “A New Level of Credibility,” http://tinyurl.com/dmrffu (Xconomy) “…After Terrafugia’s heavily attended press conference this morning announcing the maiden flight of the company’s drivable aircraft, the Transition, I buttonholed founder and CEO Carl Dietrich for a one-on-one interview. He said the flight, which took place on March 5, is probably “the biggest single milestone” that Terrafugia could have achieved—and that the company is now in a strong position to raise more money as it continues with testing and development of its “flying car” and eventually moves toward manufacturing. If venture or private-equity investors don’t come through, Dietrich says the company has good leads on “a couple” of possible corporate investors. Interestingly, Dietrich says it’s not clear yet whether the Transition will actually be manufactured in Massachusetts. The company has “proposals from all around the country” for siting its manufacturing facilities—but for now, the company’s modest garage in Woburn, MA, will do…”

26. Light and Heat: Giant Fresnel http://www.brotherswhitney.com/2008/11/light-and-heat/ “…We all played with magnifying glasses as kids. Lighting leaves on fire, scorching our retinas, and causing a massive downswing in the local insect population…A few kids were lucky enough to join the big leagues with their big Fresnel lenses. I was one of those much-envied kids. I cannot imagine how a twelve inch square of plastic could bring more joy to anyone. It was instant fire, molten lead, and ant vaporizing. At that scale it ceased to be cruel… the ants simply ceased to be. Flash forward nearly two decades. I’m hard to impress (though easy to entertain). Fantasticked out by thermite and plasma torches, how could a little magnifying glass impress me? When it’s a very big one. Three feet by four feet…”

27. Carbon nanotube muscles http://arstechnica.com/science/news/2009/03/flexing-carbon-nanotube-muscles.ars “…Artificial muscles are likely to be essential components of robotics, prosthetic limbs, and a variety of micro-machinery. Quite a few designs are out there, involving materials like carbon nanotubes and silicon elastomers but, to one degree or another, these usually fail to operate as well as natural human muscles. In today’s issue of Science, University of Texas scientists led by Ray Baughman report on a new type of muscle that dramatically outperforms biological ones in nearly every way. Baughman’s research group created carbon nanotube aerogel sheets by pulling nanotubes from a mass of disordered tubes into organized bundles of ribbons. These bundles formed an aerogel with a surprisingly low density (about 1.5 mg/cm3), making them nearly as light as air. Just one gram of this material can cover an area of over 30 m2. Although these sheets can spread out, they are also compressible. Their thickness can be reduced 400-fold, decreasing their overall volume. Perhaps even more notable than their low density is their amazing elasticity, which is simultaneously combined with hardness…” [related video http://gadgets.boingboing.net/2008/10/09/working-calculator-m.html]

Leisure & Entertainment

28. Zeebo Debuts New Game Console for Emerging Market http://tinyurl.com/d4alrr (Xconomy) Zeebo, a San Diego video-game company backed by Qualcomm, today launched the “world’s fourth console” for video games. The company’s strategy…is focused on the video-game market in emerging countries. Zeebo is entering an industry dominated by the big three of game consoles: the Nintendo Wii, Microsoft Xbox, and Sony PlayStation. Instead of challenging them head-on, however, Zeebo is aiming at the middle-class market in Brazil and countries like Mexico, Russia and India. The Zeebo system goes on sale next month in Brazil…”

29. New OnLive service could turn the video game world upside down http://tinyurl.com/c4myt2 (VentureBeat) “…if entrepreneur Steve Perlman’s OnLive lives up to its goals, the company will disrupt the entire video game industry — to the delight of both game publishers and gamers…Perlman…has developed a data compression technology and an accompanying online game service that allows game computation to be done in distant servers, rather than on game consoles or high-end computers. So rather than buying games at stores, gamers could play them across the network — without downloading them…This is video gaming on demand, where we deliver the games as a service, not something on a disk or in hardware,” Perlman said. “Hardware is no longer the defining factor of the game experience…Nvidia will benefit to a degree because OnLive’s data centers use high-end graphics chips in their servers. Nvidia has been a development partner in helping to create the server technology…the algorithms change the structure and order of Internet data, or packets, so they can sail through the Internet. A packet can make an entire round trip in 80 milliseconds, a very short amount of time compared to other Internet traffic that travels through hardware that either compresses or decompresses the data…To use OnLive, all you need is a broadband connection running at two megabits a second for standard graphics or five megabits a second for high-definition graphics…OnLive has been in stealth mode for seven years…”

30. Winners announced for Havok Physics Innovation Contest http://tinyurl.com/dhxwh7 (Intel) “…a contest to encourage developers to create games that made innovative use of Havok Physics and Animation for PC…Most Innovative Use of Physics in a Game…1st - Creo Forma by Michael Peddicord, United States…2nd - Derby Attack by Matias Nazareth Goldberg, Argentina…entries are all posted on the contest website, and are available to download and play…”

Economy and Technology

31. The end of the free lunch—again http://www.economist.com/opinion/displaystory.cfm?story_id=13326158 “…During the dotcom boom, the idea got about that there could be such a thing as a free lunch, or at least free internet services. Firms sprang up to offer content and services online, in the hope that they would eventually be able to “monetise” the resulting millions of “eyeballs” by selling advertising. Things did not work out that way, though, and the result was the dotcom crash…Then it happened all over again, starting in 2004 with the listing of Google on the stockmarket, which inflated a new “Web 2.0” bubble. Google’s ability to place small, targeted text advertisements next to internet-search results, and on other websites, meant that many of the business models thought to have been killed by the dotcom bust now rose from the grave…The free lunch was back. Now reality is reasserting itself once more, with familiar results. The number of companies that can be sustained by revenues from internet advertising turns out to be much smaller than many people thought…Ultimately, though, every business needs revenues—and advertising, it transpires, is not going to provide enough. Free content and services were a beguiling idea. But the lesson of two internet bubbles is that somebody somewhere is going to have to pick up the tab for lunch.

32. Why IBM Wants Sun http://www.businessweek.com/technology/content/mar2009/tc20090318_847789.htm A potential marriage between tech giants IBM and Sun Microsystems is rattling the tech industry. The two companies are in merger talks, and IBM (IBM) has offered $6.5 billion in cash…While computer hardware has steadily become a less important part of IBM's business, Sun is much more than a hardware company. It has been one of the most important Silicon Valley innovation factories of the past two decades—much of it in software. Combining IBM, the innovation leader of the East, with Sun, an innovation leader out West, would yield a formidable player…”

33. Trying to Earn More Money? Stop Wasting Your Time http://tinyurl.com/cfkzz7 (FreeMoneyFinance) “…I've been working with someone named "Nicole," a freelance writer who offered to help me interview some of my readers and collect money stories for my blog. She offered to work for me in exchange for advice on building her freelance business. Last week, we had our first "advice" call, and it was fascinating…Our conversation was a great example of the troubles that many entrepreneurs face when starting their businesses, so I thought I'd share some simple techniques that Nicole and I came up with to focus her on earning more money…”

Civilian Aerospace

34. Teens capture images of space with £56 camera and balloon http://tinyurl.com/cv49qo (Telegraph) “…Proving that you don't need Google's billions or the BBC weather centre's resources, the four Spanish students managed to send a camera-operated weather balloon into the stratosphere. Taking atmospheric readings and photographs 20 miles above the ground, the Meteotek team of IES La Bisbal school in Catalonia completed their incredible experiment at the end of February this year. Building the electronic sensor components from scratch, Gerard Marull Paretas, Sergi Saballs Vila, Marta­ Gasull Morcillo and Jaume Puigmiquel Casamort managed to send their heavy duty £43 latex balloon to the edge of space and take readings of its ascent. Created by the four students under the guidance of teacher Jordi Fanals Oriol, the budding scientists, all aged 18-19, followed the progress of their balloon using high tech sensors communicating with Google Earth. Team leader Gerard Marull, 18, said: "We were overwhelmed at our results, especially the photographs, to send our handmade craft to the edge of space is incredible…”

35. Colbert wins space station name contest http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29841715/ “…The name "Colbert" beat out NASA's four suggested options in the space agency's effort to have the public help name the addition…Colbert urged viewers of his Comedy Central show, "The Colbert Report" to write in his name. And they complied, with 230,539 votes. That clobbered Serenity, one of the NASA choices, by more than 40,000 votes. Nearly 1.2 million votes were cast by the time the contest ended Friday. NASA reserves the right to choose an appropriate name…”

36. Space symposium soaring http://www.gazette.com/articles/symposium_50395___article.html/space_industry.html There is no recession in orbit, organizers of the 25th annual National Space Symposium have found. While other trade shows have withered amid the faltering economy, the symposium that starts next week at The Broadmoor is as big as ever…The healthy symposium is good news for the local economy, because it is expected to draw 7,500 people who will pack area hotels and drop cash in restaurants. The real money at the symposium changes hands in hotel rooms at The Broadmoor where industry giants like Boeing and Lockheed Martin along with smaller players including local technology firms cut deals for satellites, services and computing gear. This year's symposium focuses on the future of the space industry…”

Supercomputing & GPUs

37. Lenovo Refreshes Workstations With Desktop Supercomputer http://tinyurl.com/c48o33 (InformationWeek) “…Companies looking to convert the systems into personal supercomputers can opt for the Tesla C1060 graphics processing unit. The GPU, introduced last year, offers 1 teraflop, or a trillion computational operations per second, and 4 GB of memory. Nvidia claims the platform, which offers 240 processing cores, delivers 10 times the computational power of a computer with two quad-core CPUs while using about the same amount of energy. In order to run high-performance computing applications on the systems, however, the heavily computational portions of software would have to be run through Nvidia's CUDA compiler…”

38. New video-editing software gets multiframe tech http://news.cnet.com/8301-13580_3-10202382-39.html “…The $49.99 software program, called vReveal, analyzes a video's adjacent frames and combines the data to create a higher-quality version. This can bring out details in dim areas, correct camera shake, and remove noise and blocky compression artifacts…It can run up to five times faster when you have a CUDA-enabled Nvidia GPU in your system…”

39. GIS Record for supercomputing desktop http://sev.prnewswire.com/computer-software/20090315/LA8390215032009-1.html “…Manifold.net today announced a new world record for the number of processors used in a personal computer for Geographic Information Systems (GIS) processing…Manifold demonstrated an upcoming new software product that simultaneously utilized over 1440 processor cores to perform a remote sensing image computation at supercomputer speed with over 3.5 teraflops of performance. Manifold demonstrated the new software on a desktop 64-bit Windows PC equipped with three NVIDIA GTX 295 GPU cards costing less than $500 each. The demonstration showed how a desktop Windows PC using inexpensive consumer components and running a $245 Manifold GIS package can run over one hundred times faster than any other GIS or remote sensing software package…”

40. Three Reasons for Moving to Multicore http://www.ddj.com/hpc-high-performance-computing/216200386 “…even computers aimed at the home market have at least two processor cores. Four-core machines are already widely available, with affordable six processors on the horizon. As if that's not enough, some hard-core gamers have dual quad-core processors installed, while companies like Intel are prototyping 80-core processors…When asked what are the top three reasons motivating companies to move to multicore, Cilk Arts' Ilya Mirman reports that they repeatedly heard three key themes…”

41. CUDA, Supercomputing for the Masses: Part 11 http://www.ddj.com/hpc-high-performance-computing/215900921 “…In this installment, I revisit local and constant memory and introduce the concept of "texture memory." Optimizing the performance of CUDA applications most often involves optimizing data accesses which includes the appropriate use of the various CUDA memory spaces. Texture memory provides a surprising aggregation of capabilities including the ability to cache global memory (separate from register, global, and shared memory) and dedicated interpolation hardware separate from the thread processors. Texture memory also provides a way to interact with the display capabilities of the GPU…”

42. Finding the Door in the Memory Wall, Part 2 http://tinyurl.com/ddrds8 (HPCwire) “…we contrast the behavior of a highly parallel state-of-the-art algorithm with that of a moderately-parallel algorithm in which some of the parallelism has been traded for lower DRAM bandwidth demands. We show the latter outperforms the highly parallel algorithm by a factor three on today's multicore processors…”

43. Penguin Computing: GPU computing clusters http://tinyurl.com/cm9tdy (PenguinComputing) “…Penguin is now offering an Altus 1702 fully-integrated cluster with four twin 1U compute nodes, four NVIDIA® Tesla™ S1070 GPU Computing Systems, Gigabit Ethernet and Penguin’s Scyld management software for $44,985 (configuration Z170034). This system provides over 16 teraflops of compute power in a 9U rack configuration. A cluster option expands the configuration to eight Altus 1702 twin compute nodes and eight Tesla S1070 GPU Computing Systems with over 32 teraflops of performance for less than $89,000. All systems have AMD Opteron 2376 CPU's and 8GB RAM per node, a 24-port GigE switch and a Scyld annual subscription included for each node. Each Tesla S1070 1U GPU Computing System has four Tesla T10 GPUs, each delivering almost one teraflop of single precision and 80 gigaflops of double precision performance…”

44. Multicore chips pose next big challenge for industry http://tinyurl.com/d3n9zk (ComputerWorld) Adding more processing cores has emerged as the primary way of boosting performance of server and PC chips, but the benefits will be greatly diminished if the industry can't overcome certain hardware and programming challenges, participants at the Multicore Expo in Santa Clara, California, said last week…” [http://www.khronos.org/news/events/detail/khronos_devu_at_multicore_expo]

45. Your next CPU could be a GPU http://tinyurl.com/cgnqw9 (TechRadar) “…just take a look at the companies that want a slice of the GPGPU pie: Nvidia, AMD, Intel, Microsoft, IBM, Apple and Toshiba all want in. And it's not just speculation that's leading to such big interest: GPGPU systems are already outperforming CPU-only clusters in fields as diverse as molecular dynamics, ray tracing, medical imaging and sequence matching…”


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