MeeGo to 1.2, YouGo to download?

Subject: General Tech, Mobile | May 20, 2011 - 02:04 AM |
Tagged: meego

For those who desire an alternative to Windows 7 in their netbooks or Android in their tablet: The Linux Foundation, Intel, Nokia, Novell, and AMD are continuously developing an alternative mobile operating system based on Linux. While there are currently large doubts about how many participants are still active members in this project there must be someone still coding away because version 1.2 was released to the public.

 
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I’m Tuxing over! : D
 
This version contains improvement to the following segments of MeeGo:
  • An updated Netbook “User Experience”
  • An updated in-vehicle “User Experience”
  • Developer preview for those wishing to install MeeGo on tablets
  • And of course an updated SDK
 
Intel and AMD continue to pledge support towards the development of MeeGo though Nokia’s recent partnership with Microsoft puts their support for MeeGo into question. Intel recently took the opportunity to blame Nokia for Intel’s lackluster mobile performance as a whole and is currently in the process of pitching handset designs they developed with Nokia to other manufacturers. Intel is also currently playing with Google’s Android to stake the ground for a foothold on ARM turf. For the nearer future, however, MeeGo claims that they will continue on their approximately 6-month release cycle and will ship MeeGo 1.3 in the October timeframe. 
Source: MeeGo

PC Perspective Podcast #155 - MSI GT680R Notebook, Corsair 650D chassis, VIA Nano Quad Core and more!

Subject: Editorial, General Tech | May 19, 2011 - 03:24 PM |
Tagged: pcper, podcast, msi, VIA, Nano, quad core, corsair, 650d, Intel

PC Perspective Podcast #155 - 5/19/2011

This week we talk about the MSI GT680R Notebook, Corsair 650D chassis, VIA Nano Quad Core and more!

You can subscribe to us through iTunes and you can still access it directly through the RSS page HERE.

The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!

  • iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the iTunes Store
  • RSS - Subscribe through your regular RSS reader
  • MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file

Hosts: Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath and Allyn Malventano

This Podcast is brought to you by MSI Computer, and their all new Sandy Bridge Motherboards!

Program length: 43:49

Program Schedule:

Source:

ARCTIC drops the Cooling from its name and gets into audio

Subject: General Tech | May 19, 2011 - 11:54 AM |
Tagged: arctic, audio, headset, headphone

ARCTIC Cooling is no more, they've rebranded themselves and joined the rest of the industry in providing fragmented product lines.   They'll still make heatsinks for CPUs but are also going to be pushing a line of headsets for a wide variety of uses; they are currently peddling 20 different models.  [H]ard|OCP received three to review, ear can style headphones for listening to music, a Bluetooth set for those on the go and a 5.1 surround gaming headset with mic.  Only one received a recommendation from them, head on over to find out which.

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"ARCTIC is well known for its processor air coolers and its fans alike. In the last couple of years it has greatly diversified its product line to include products from remote control toy cars to computer audio headphones. Today we look at three of its headphone and headset products and let you know the value of those."

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Audio Corner

Source: [H]ard|OCP

NVIDIA drops $163 million in generated revenue

Subject: General Tech | May 19, 2011 - 11:35 AM |
Tagged: nvidia, quarter, income

We have been discussing the changes to the graphics market on the front page and on the Podcast, and as expected NVIDIA's income has shrunk.  Last year NVIDIA was generating $800 million but saw revenue drop bu over $100 million, in perspective SemiAccurate pegs their professional graphics division at about $200 million.  If NVIDIA is going to be able to keep their R&D team working on chips several generations ahead of the current products on the market, which they need to in order to be competitive, they had better hope that their foray into the mobile chip market is lucrative enough to pay the bills.

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"Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) published their results last Thursday topping analyst estimates and six days later the stock was down 10%. What happened?

The numbers were pretty good. Revenue was up and Tegra™ finally started to get traction, more than 3 times up but there are some red lights. First their revenues are down YoY. Second, their GPU business is down YoY and last, but not least, their professional business revenue is more or less flat for the last quarter."

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Tech Talk

Source: SemiAccurate

Intel Talks Finances And Growth At Investor Meeting 2011

Subject: General Tech | May 18, 2011 - 05:29 PM |
Tagged: revenue, Intel, cagr

Intel held its annual Investor Meeting today, where the chip maker talked software, the state of the business, as well as new hardware and leveraging microarcitecture leadership. This installment focuses on the business growth and financial aspects.

With 43,905 United States employees and a rank of 62 on the 2010 Fortune 500 list, Intel is a huge company.  And with an over $10 billion dollar Q1 2011, Intel is doing quite well.

During the investor meeting, Intel's CFO (Chief Financial Officer) Stacy Smith took the stage to talk about the company's financial performance and how the company is growing. One of the first points that he talked about was Intel's design and manufacturing advantages. Intel spends a great deal of it's capitol on R&D (research and development). and this investment in itself and the amount of research that is completed, allows the chip maker to maintain it's x86 market leadership. The company has also started acquiring other companies in an effort to differentiate itself from its competitors. For example, the recent McAfee acquisition has brought security and software engineers to Intel's portfolio, and will allow them to create security software solutions that can easily be paired with their hardware.

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Intel also stated that it is growing, and expects to sell even more hardware thanks to emerging markets and the rise in "cloud computing" requiring larger and more numerous data centers.  The chart above shows Intel's CAGR (compound annual growth rate), which is a number created by taking the nth root of the total percentage growth rate with "n" being the total number of years calculated.  It is a way for companies to describe the rate of investment growth if it grew at a steady rate (which is unlikely to happen in real life due to a dynamic and constantly changing market).  Including the company's projections for 2011, Intel is looking at a 12% CAGR for revenue and a 35% CAGR in EPS or earnings per share.

Paul S. Otellini, who is the President and Chief Executive Officer for Intel reaffirmed Intel's growth by stating that 74.5 quintillion transistors shipped in 2010.  This rapid rise in growth can be attributed to cloud computing demands for more data centers, emerging markets adopting more computers, and Intel's interest in the mobile market.

The historic part of the graph above shows the rise in traditional servers from 1995 to its highesd point in 2010 as the Internet becomes further adopted and more and more applications execute server side.  The right side of the graph; however, shows Intel's projections for the future from 2010 to 2015.  They expect to see a massive increase in processor growth for data center market thanks to an influx of new cloud computing applications and networked storage.  Intel also stated that the company's latest Xenon processors are no longer second to Itanium for mission critical applications, and thus Intel expects a rise in Core processors for mission critical servers.  In 2010 alone, the company had $8.4B in revenue and $4.4B of operating profit.  In 2013, Intel forecasts a 15% growth in revenue with operating margins at ~50% for the data center group.

From the PC Client Group, which encompasses both desktops and laptops, Intel had almost $7 million dollars for Q1 2011 revenue, which is at least $1 million more than Q1 2010.  Further, their reported Q1 revenue for 2011 is the highest that it has ever been between Q1 2008 and Q1 2010.  Their operating margins have also increased compared to 2008, with a 17% CAGR.  Intel also revisited the issue of high R&D budgets, and showed that the overall cost across platform segments have declined since 2008.  As research cost for new technologies increase, the cost to make wafers decreases.  Intel forecasts that for the Performance, Mainstream, and Atom platforms, the costs will continue to decrease into 2011 and 2012 while the Value platform will see a slight increase in 2011 and remain stable into 2012.

Emerging markets are also responsible for the company's growth.  Intel stated that "you will see a rapid increase in PC penetration rates in China, Latin America, and Eastern Europe."  Both Brazil and Eastern Europe are projected to reach 80% PC penetration in 2015, for example.  China is expected to attain a 40% penetration rate, while India will have 10%.  Intel stated that this is possible thanks to falling prices in computers along with rising incomes worldwide.  Once a country's incomes reach a level where 4 to 8 weeks is enough to purchase a PC, the penetration rate sees a rapid increase.  Currently, Intel has determined 4.2 WOI (weeks of income) are necessary to purchase a PC worldwide, which is much lower than the 9.9 weeks of income necessary the previous year.  In 2014, Intel projects that only 2.3 weeks of income will be necessary.  Inside the worldwide WOI spectrum, North America has the lowest WOI each year, followed by Japan and Western Europe.  India and China have historically had the highest WOI; however, Intel projects that by 2014, the countries will have greatly reduced their WOI at 10.3 and 2.6 respectively.

While data centers, emerging markets are responsible for the majority of Intel's projected growth, Intel also has both the embedded and software and services group.  On the embedded side, Intel is expecting a 11% CAGR between 2010 and 2013.  In 2010, the embedded group saw $1.5 billion dollars in revenue, and Intel projects almost $2 billion dollars in revenue in 2011.  Intel has stated that they are "making significant investments in SoC, tablet, and smart phone R&D" and that they "expect market segment share gains and growing businesses in tablets, smart phones (application and base band processors), and connected CE (consumer electronics) devices."

The Software and Services Group also accounts for a small portion of Intel's revenue.  The company's software acquisitions include McAfee, Wind River, and Havok among others.  The group is a rapidly growing part of Intel, with a projected $3 billion dollars of revenue in 2013 compared to $330 million dollars in revenue in 2010.  The group is an "upside opportunity as we embed additional security features into hardware and software," according to Intel.

Further, Intel showed a glimpse of it's NAND Solutions Group, and indicated that it forecasts a slightly increased operating profit for 2011 which coincides with Intel lowering the Cost/GB of NAND based devices (such as SSDs) compared to the industry leader.

As a company that diversifies it's products, leads the x86 markets, and invests heavily in itself with acquisitions and R&D, Intel is a profitable company that shows no signs of slowing it's growth.

Source: Intel

Rumor: More details on Amazon tablets, yes: plural

Subject: General Tech, Mobile | May 18, 2011 - 05:05 PM |
Tagged: tegra, nvidia, kal-el, amazon

At the beginning of the month we reported that Amazon seems to be moving into the tablet space with an order for hundreds of thousands of touchscreens per month. There is now more evidence that the Kindle manufacturer is looking specifically to do an Android tablet due to the processors rumored to be included. We think you will be smiling very soon.

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Roadrunner Stew: Water, Roadrunner, Diced Apple 

According to a source from Boy Genius Report: Amazon will be releasing two tablets potentially as earlier as second-half 2011. Their entry-level model, “Coyote”, will contain an NVIDIA dual-core Tegra 2 which for those following the tablet space knows that is not an entry-level part. Their higher-up model, "Hollywood", is said to contain NVIDIA’s upcoming Kal-El, the quad-core successor to the Tegra 2 with an integrated GPU reportedly 5-fold faster than those found on the Tegra 2.
 
It should be noted that an entry-level tablet for Amazon does not necessarily suggest what price Amazon would be aiming for. Amazon could still have their Kindle line as their true entry-level product which would allow them to skip straight to the higher performing Tegra 2 and Kal-El parts for their actual tablet line as they could point to the Kindle for those who want less than a Tegra 2. So if you happen to be looking for an Android tablet and can wait a few months you might wish to hold off and see what wily Amazon is cooking up.
Source: PCMag

Call it Xenonauts if you want, it's still X-COM done the right way

Subject: General Tech | May 18, 2011 - 12:13 PM |
Tagged: gaming, x-com, mod

It has been a first person shooter, a flight simulator and a turn based strategy game in a world where even a glass window is utterly impervious to nuclear weapons, but never has X-COM UFO Defense been properly remade or reimagined.  It looks like an indy company will beat everyone else to it with their soon to enter beta testing Xenonauts, which keeps the style of the original, admittedly aged game, and more importantly includes destrucatable terrain!  No word yet on if you can fund your extermination efforts by selling equipment you made from alien tech to world governments but there is a lot of info on the game over at Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN.

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"It’s been a bit all-quiet for the Cold War-set X-COM reimagining Xenonauts for the last few months, but creators Goldhawk have finally broken cover to show how the major element – the ground combat – looks in action. The answer, you may not be terribly surprised to hear is “quite a bit like X-COM”, but clearly that’s exactly what we want. Higher res and detail is a fine thing, but it’s especially pleasing to see that destructible scenery, something so bafflingly absent from many of the commercial X-COM remakes, is present and correct."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Gaming

Fermi, Fermi, Fermi! Nobody pays attention to Tesla and the M2090 GPU Coprocessor

Subject: General Tech | May 18, 2011 - 11:39 AM |
Tagged: nvidia, gpu coprocessor, tesla

It is always the flashy brother that everyone notices, even if you've never met them ... say the GTX590.  However the other brother shouldn't be ignored because it turns out Telsa is pretty cool among the server crowd.  Where once the humble math coprocessor went the M2090 GPU coprocessor races past, with a specially made, not bin sorted 40nm Fermi GPU running at 1.3GHz and GDDR5 at 1.85GHz which can pull some interesting ECC tricks and of course a ful 512 CUDA Cores.  If you think that is a lot of power, NVIDIA told The Register they are recommending one M2090 per CPU core, not per physical CPU.  

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"GPU chipmaker Nvidia knows that it has to do more to grow its Tesla biz than slap some passive heat sinks on a fanless GPU card and talk up its CUDA parallel-programming tools. It has to keep delivering price/performance improvements, as well.

And that's exactly what it's doing with the new Tesla M2090 GPU coprocessor."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

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Source: The Register

Steam Launches Daily Deals Game Sales

Subject: General Tech | May 18, 2011 - 12:30 AM |
Tagged: steam, PC, gaming

Valve announced today that is is launching the biggest sale in the popular gaming system's history: one that never ends!

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Steam's "Daily Deals" will feature a game a day, every 24 hours. You can find the games featured on the Steam homepage or by following their Twitter or Facebook feeds.

PC gamers everywhere are known to empty their wallets for Steam's holiday sales; therefore, these "daily deals" may just require a second job for the really dedicated Steam gamers.  To see just how much you've already spent on steam games, you might want to check out the Steam Calculator.

Source: Steam

Intel Talks Software And Demos Local File Syncing, Standby, And Hibernate Tech At Investor Meeting 2011

Subject: General Tech | May 17, 2011 - 08:38 PM |
Tagged: sync, mobile, lan, Intel

Intel held its annual Investor Meeting today, where the chip maker talked software, the state of the business, as well as new hardware and leveraging microarcitecture leadership. This installment focuses on the software side of things.

softwareintel.PNG

 During the various keynotes that were held throughout the day for the Investor Meeting 2011, one ideal seemed to present itself in some form or another, and summarized the message Intel presented to the world.  The idea was that of a consistent user experience across every computing platform accomplished by leveraging Intel software applications with Intel hardware advancements to deliver a productive and easy to use computing experience whether it is on a cell phone or a dual CPU production workstation.  Intel is a market leader in micro-architecture and x86 processors, as well as in sold state drives and high performance computing.  Soon, thanks to advancements in transistor technology, Intel will also have a large presence in the mobile market with low power x86 SoCs.  Their dominance in desktop computing hardware, along with their good relations with many software developers allows the chip maker a great deal of influence in the technology industry.  On the software side of things, Intel has a team of engineers who work inside Microsoft's closely with their software engineers to ensure that the popular operating system delivers a solid experience for x86, and specifically Intel, powered computers.  Intel is also heavily invested in open source software and has helped in creating open source operating systems and applications.  In the mobile market, Intel is still a proponent and developer of MeeGo, for instance.

This influence and investment in both hardware and software research and development has made Intel a leader in the technology industry.  Intel plans to leverage this influence to deliver the most consistent user experience across all platforms, and the process has already begun.  Intel has several software technologies that are capable of harnessing their architecture technology to make computers easier to use and more productive.  They showed off three (new) pieces of such software during one of their keynotes, including PC Sync, and Fast Flash Standby which encompasses an active standby/sleep mode and fast recovery hibernation modes.

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PC Sync is a program much akin to Dropbox in that it promises to keep all of the files that you select in sync between all of your different devices.  David Perlmutter and a co-worker showed PC Sync working live as they synced files between two computers.  The program differs from Dropbox; however, in the fact that it only works over your local network, and thus it is inherently more secure and faster than services that must first sync files to an Internet server before downloading to the target computer(s).

The other interesting software demonstrated was Intel's Fast Flash Standby technology.  This software improves upon the traditional sleep and hibernation modes in Microsoft Windows.  The standby mode will put the computer to sleep by saving the system state to RAM and entering a low power mode just like the standard Windows' affair; however, the software will also automatically wake up the system at periodic intervals to download updates such as email, tweets, and Facebook messages, and then will return the computer to its sleep state so that once the computer is woken, the system is already updated and ready to go.  Intel has also improved upon the hibernation sleep mode by utilizing flash memory to greatly reduce the time necessary to enter hibernation and resume from the sleep mode.  In the demo, the system state was saved to a fast flash drive, and not only did the computer quickly hibernate but it resumed from hibernation in 5 seconds.

Intel also talked about mobile software.  Android and MeeGo are both software platforms that Intel is interested in powering with its mobile processors.  The 7" tablet and concept smart phone they showed off were both running android.  Intel's Senior Vice President and General Manager for its Software & Services Group, Renée J. James stated that Intel is well positioned to create an application ecosystem when it enters the mobile market, and that developers have stated that they plan to develop for them.  Further, Renée stated that 90% of Android applications are a run-time and can easily be made to run on Intel's mobile devices.

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Intel also addressed the shareholders' concerns of how Windows 8 on ARM would affect Intel.  The Windows 8 SKU for ARM will be a ARM focused operating system, and will run ARM applications.  The SKU will be well suited for ARM powered mobile devices where mobile and cloud applications can be used.  On the other hand, there will also be a "full" Windows 8 with Windows 7 mode that will offer the full featured Windows experience, including backwards compatibility with legacy applications--which the ARM SKU will not offer.  Because of this full featured Windows 8 operating system version is tailored for x86, Intel believes that it will have the "best of both worlds" for the consumers in being able to have the full fledged OS and ability to use existing Windows applications made for x86.  Renée remained confident in Intel's continued position despite an OS version for ARM chips.

Further, Intel recognized its McAfee acquisition.  The president of McAfee then took the stage to explain that the company was committed to delivering security products across the Intel line.  He also stressed that with the ever increasing presence of malware on the Internet, the current method of security programs using "blacklisting" techniques was not sustainable.  The cloud, he surmised, was both a security concern as well as a resource for security programs, and that he expects to have software that is backed by large Internet databases cataloging malware definitions to be the standard in the coming years until a technique stronger than blacklisting becomes usable.

For a hardware company, Intel has also delved heavily into software by working with developers and acquiring software companies.  They recognize that it takes more than hardware to create a quality computing experience and only with the right balance of both hardware and software is a consistent user experience across all of their devices possible.

Source: Intel