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IBM's Earnings Miss Gives Wall Street the Willies
October 20, 2014
IBM's earnings slipped in Q3, sending its share prices sliding 7.11 percent to close Monday at $169.10. The company announced it is unloading its Microelectronics OEM semiconductor business and manufacturing operations to GlobalFoundries. IBM will pay GlobalFoundries $1.5 billion to take over the business. IBM's bleak news is being blamed for sending the overall Dow Jones Industrial Average south.
IBM Enlists Intel to Shore Up Hybrid Cloud
September 10, 2014
Despite the growing momentum behind cloud computing in recent times, security concerns have been a drag on adoption. IBM sought to reduce that resistance by announcing on Monday that it would start using Intel chip technology to better secure its SoftLayer cloud platform. The Intel technology can be especially reassuring to enterprises running hybrid clouds.
Intel Picks Up Its Mobile Pace
September 09, 2014
Intel on Tuesday made a mobile splash as it kicked off the Intel Developer Forum being held in San Francisco through Thursday. It announced the commercial availability of Intel Edison, its postage stamp-sized System on a Chip, and of its second-generation Intel XMM 7260 and 7262 LTE modem. It also unveiled the MICA bracelet -- available exclusively on AT&T's network.
Why You Should Still Care About Moore's Law
August 19, 2014
Ironically, the greater IT accomplishments become, the harder they are to see. Consider Intel's latest achievement: the new Broadwell architecture that shrank microprocessor manufacturing from the previous generation 22nm Haswell process to 14nm. Since a nanometer is a millionth of a millimeter, you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference without an electron microscope.
Nvidia's Tegra K1 Stars in New Acer Chromebook
August 12, 2014
Acer America has rolled out a new Chromebook contender featuring a 13.3-inch display and an Nvidia Tegra K1 mobile processor. With a battery life of up to 13 hours, along with a light, fanless design, the Acer Chromebook 13 is available with a full HD display with 1920 x 1080 resolution, 2 GB of memory and a 16-GB solid state drive for $299.99; or 1366 x 768, with similar specs, for $279.99.
Intel's Broadwell: What Happens When the MacBook Air Is Thinner Than the iPad Air?
August 11, 2014
Intel on Monday introduced its Broadwell processor platform to the world, and it is an impressive piece of technology. Stepping outside of its normal two-step process of first releasing the processor and then updating the platform, Intel is doing both this cycle, and the end result is a massive step forward in terms of size and power efficiency Intel is stepping solidly into ARM turf.
I Think, Therefore IBM
August 08, 2014
IBM has announced the latest version of its neurosynaptic processor -- that is, a processor whose workings are inspired by the human brain. It has 5.4 billion transistors and an on-chip network of 4,096 neurosynaptic cores. IBM claims it is the first neurosynaptic chip to achieve 1 million programmable neurons, 256 million programmable synapses, and 46 billion synaptic operations per second.
Amazon's Rumored 3D Smartphone May Radically Change E-Commerce
April 16, 2014
A picture may be worth a thousand words but the photo of what might be a smartphone in development by Amazon has produced many more words than that. The photo shows a black smartphone that looks like any number of mobiles on the market, save for the number of cameras on the front. In addition to the typical front-facing camera for selfies and video messaging, there are four others.
Is Google Thwarting Android-x86 Development?
March 26, 2014
Has Google been spreading FUD to discourage computer makers from using an Android OS retooled to run on legacy computers? The maintainer of the Android-x86 Project has suggested that the Justice Department should investigate whether Google has been interfering with adoption of the open source code his community is developing. The FOSS development world is hardly free of rivalry and power plays.
HTC Flips Switch on One M8 Buzz Machine
March 26, 2014
Ask the Internet. That's the pitch in HTC's TV ads for its new flagship smartphone, the HTC One M8. It's a pitch that hopes to acquire by word of mouth what HTC was unable to get for its predecessor: consumer mindshare. "The challenge for any vendor outside of Samsung and Apple in the North American market is to get on the radar screen," said Gartner analyst Van L. Baker.
Nvidia ECS: Where Real Innovation AND Execution Are on Display
March 17, 2014
One of the questions I've been getting regularly, both because little companies like WhatsApp are in the news and because large firms are struggling to find early stage innovative firms, is "Where do you go to see a lot of small innovative companies?" Firms like this get lost at shows like CES. They just don't have the budget to stand out against the bigger firm's announcements and footprint.
AMD Unleashes Kaveri APUs
January 14, 2014
AMD is attempting to take computing to a new level with the launch of its 2014 AMD A-Series Accelerated Processing Units. The A-Series APUs include AMD's Radeon R7 graphics technology and are codenamed "Kaveri." The chips mark the first time that AMD has used the Heterogeneous System Architecture in an APU -- a way to let the chip evenly allocate and give access to certain resources.
Will ARM Get a Cold Shoulder from Data Center Owners?
January 14, 2014
The past couple of years have seen rising interest in and considerable promotion of servers and appliances based on the ARM microprocessor architecture. At first glance, the narrative makes some sense. ARM's native performance and energy efficiency, when multiplied across hundreds or thousands of systems, looks impressive for supporting certain kinds of workloads common in Web 2.0, social networking and search sites.
Nvidia's K1 Super Chip Lands in Farmer's Field
January 08, 2014
Nvidia this week announced the Tegra K1, a 192-core super chip that brings its Kepler architecture to the mobile space. Kepler is used in what Nvidia claims is the fastest GPU on the planet, its GeForce GTX 780 Ti. Because the K1 will support the latest PC-class gaming technologies, it will be able to run the Unreal Engine 4 game engine, allowing PC- and console-class game play.
Intel Leaps Out of the Box
January 07, 2014
CEO Brian Krzanich laid out the road map for Intel's future in his first Consumer Electronics Show keynote as CEO. Krzanich, who took over the top job last May, focused on wearable technology -- including some products designed internally -- as well as dual operating system tech and Intel's McAfee security software. Among the products Krzanich displayed was a Bluetooth headset codenamed "Jarvis."
Chinese Man Heads to US Prison for Microchip Smuggling Attempt
December 19, 2013
A Chinese citizen was sentenced to three years in U.S. prison Wednesday for trying to smuggle American-made microchips from California to China. The man, Philip Chaohui He, was targeted in a 2011 sting at a Los Angeles-area port. He was nabbed while approaching a Chinese freighter, toting with him 200 radiation-hardened microchips tucked inside a tub of baby formula.
Intel Chief Lays Out the Game Plan
November 25, 2013
In his first meeting with investors since taking the helm, CEO Brian Krzanich presented a road map for the company's future. Intel will make a stronger push into mobile devices, expand its foundry business to build processors for other chip makers, and move into additional new markets. Intel has lagged behind competitors such as Qualcomm in the smartphone and tablet spaces.
Microchips May Haunt Tombstone Thieves
November 18, 2013
A private company in South Africa has created "Memorial Alert," a microchip-based technology designed to thwart tombstone robberies. There recently has been a spate of these crimes in Johannesburg. The microchip is inserted into a memorial. When it is disturbed, it will sound an alarm and send a text message to relatives and integrated security companies.
AMD, Verizon Pump Each Other Up
October 22, 2013
Customer testimonials play an odd role in many IT industry announcements. At first glance, they offer proof that technologies are actually being used successfully as advertised, lending credence to vendors' sometimes lofty go-to-market claims. Even the most enthusiastic clients tend to guarded, though, for fear that they may injure relationships with other vendors or negate competitive advantages.
BlackBerry and Surface 2: The Fight to Reclaim Past Glory
September 30, 2013
Both BlackBerry and Microsoft have been in far stronger positions with regard to personal technology. At one time, Microsoft was contending for leadership in smartphones against Palm and BlackBerry, and BlackBerry took leadership only to lose it to Apple and then Samsung. Microsoft put tablets on the map in the early part of last decade, but it missed a memo and Apple refined them to success.
IDF2013: Intel's Evolution Hugs the Inside Track
September 30, 2013
Silicon Valley loves an underdog. That's partly because such tales feed the industry's self-mythologizing and the IPO culture that attracts fresh money. To be honest, IT can boast more than its fair share of such successes: Hewlett and Packard, Jobs and Wozniak, and Page and Brin all helped make the industry what it is today. However, mythic underdogs also serve as distractions from another truth.
World With New Limits: The Coming End of Moore's Law
September 23, 2013
Here in the tech community, declaring the birth or death of an era is a tried-and-true path to social fame. For that reason, proclamations to that effect are pretty dang common. Those of us here in the Linux community are pretty accustomed to such announcements by now -- just witness the never-ending "year of Linux desktop" and "death of desktop Linux" rotation that seems to besiege us year after year.
Oh Quark: Intel Just Changed the Technology Market
September 16, 2013
This year, Intel held its IDF during the same week as Apple's iPhone launch, and it's not the first time these events have coincided. However, I could count the number of times Intel has had something more interesting to present than Apple on one hand -- and have five fingers left over. That was true until last week, when Intel surprised the market with an obscure technology codenamed "Quark."
Samsung to Keep Up With the 64-Bit Joneses
September 14, 2013
Samsung's next Galaxy smartphones will have 64-bit processors, J.K. Shin, head of Samsung Mobile Communications, reportedly has promised. Samsung is apparently taking its cue from Apple's launch of the iPhone 5s, the first 64-bit-processor smartphone, earlier this week. A 64-bit processor can grab larger pieces of data and process them more quickly than 32-bit CPUs, and it is more power-efficient.

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