Wednesday, June 20


Daily News Stuff 20 June 2018

  • Programming Ethereum contracts is like writing accounting software in 6502 assembler except that you need to hire an intern to keep turning the crank or the computer crashes and steals all your money and flees to the Bahamas with your cat.

    – Me

  • If you need 19GB per second of I/O, Asus has you covered. You'll also need a high-end desktop - ThreadRipper or Core i9 - to have enough PCIe lanes.

  • TechDirt reports on a trademark cockup.

    MR. REUBER: Your Honor, if I may?

    THE COURT: No. You are out of the case.

    MR. REUBER: I understand, your Honor. But I penned the brief, and there is an error that my client alerted me to this morning in the brief. Specifically, it is first one you just read, Bite Me Cocky, published in 2012. He has learned that that title may have changed as a result of the Cockygate sort of disputes. It might have been originally published as Bite Me and not Bite Me Cocky. I just wanted to point that out.

  • OpenBSD has disabled hyperthreading as a security precaution. This is not a new vulnerability, but rather to preempt the discovery of new vulnerabilities.

Let's all go to the lobby and have ourselves a snack. Image by Einladung_zum_Essen on Pixabay.

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Tuesday, June 19


Daily News Stuff 19 June 2018

  • The EU is busy cementing its self-assigned role as internet cancer, with YouTube an opportunistic infection.

  • AMD offers old chips for new.  Swap your 8086 for a 16-core ThreadRipper!  If you have the right version of the 8086, that is.

  • Humble Bundle has some book bundles that might interest my audience

  • Intel's rumoured 8 core Coffee Lake S has shown up on...  Intel's own website.  I think the rumours are pretty well confirmed at this point.

    AMD are widely expected to fire back next year with a 12 core mainstream Ryzen.  And so it goes.

  • The Internet of Idiotic Things (IoIT) strikes again with an electronic padlock that can be unlocked by anyone with a smartphone in two seconds.

    Or anyone with a web browser even faster.
I meant to do that, photo by Tama66 on Pixabay

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Monday, June 18


Daily News Stuff 18 June 2018

  • Tonight we're gonna party like it's 1987 or thereabouts.

  • If you're using IBM Bluemix (née SoftLayer) their file storage can automatically keep up to 50 snapshots on any mix of hourly, daily, and weekly schedules...  Until it runs out of snapshot space anyway.  (Maximum snapshot space is the same size as the disk.)

  • My heater died.  My toes are cold.

  • Out of news error.  Redo from start.

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Sunday, June 17


Daily News Stuff 17 June 2018

Computer of the week is the Sharp X68000.
Art by the talented @xiao_woo

* Don't buy gold.

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Saturday, June 16


Daily News Stuff 16 June 2018

Winter edition.  I'm sure people who live in stupid places will insist Sydney doesn't have a winter, but pfft to them.
  • Huawei's P20 and P20 Pro seem to be good modern smartphones.  They use Huawei's own Kirin 970, which is not quite the latest hardware compared to Qualcomm and Apple, but couple it with 4GB or 6GB of LPDDR4X.  Two unfortunate design features - the dreaded notch and the lamented absent headphone socket - but you can turn off the notch if you like.

    LPDDR4X is very interesting, a lower-power and faster version of LPDDR4 with speeds up to 4266MHz.  I'd love to see it attached to AMD's next-gen Ryzen APU, which will have its performance constrained by bandwidth more than by core and shader count.

  • The New York senate is full of idiots.

  • GitLab now includes an IDE.  No, I don't know why either.

  • Apple has forgotten it's a computer company and people are starting to notice.

  • Crystal 0.25 is out.


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Friday, June 15


Daily News Stuff 15 June 2018

  • Intel bitten by yet another speculative execution bug along the lines of Spectre and Meltdown. This one is called LazyFP. Looks like a good time to be an AMD investor.*

  • If you work with MongoDB, dbKoda offers an administration and development front end similar to those available for SQL databases. Now in 1.0 release.

  • PCIe 4.0 doesn't come without costs, mostly in terms of, um, costs. A single PCIe 4.0 x16 slot could add $25 in materials to a motherboard. PCIe 5.0 is even more expensive.

    On the other hand, Megtron-6 sounds like a Go Nagai series.

  • 802.11ax is here, more or less. This is the successor to 802.11ac, with major speed advantages for crowded spaces with many wifi users. (Less so for single users.)

    Note that this is a separate and distinct standard from 802.11ad (60 GHz ultra-fast line-of-sight), 802.11ay (60 GHz medium-range), and 802.11ah (ultra low power networking for IoT).

* I lost all my money in the dotcom bubble. If you take anything I say as investment advice you are an idiot.

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Thursday, June 14


Daily News Stuff 14 June 2018

  • Intel announces graphics cards coming in 2020. Larrabee says "What am I, chopped liver?" The answer is yes, Larrabee, chopped liver is what you are.

  • If you need 5-10 GB per second of I/O, Gigabyte and Plextor have you covered.

  • AMD reportedly has been busy co-creating their next-gen Navi graphics with Sony for the PlayStation 5 and future PCs. Apparently two thirds of their graphics engineers have been working on the project, leaving last year's Vega release short staffed and somewhat underwhelming. The same reports say the PS5 will run on Zen CPU cores, which will be a big improvement over the <random cat name> cores used by both the PS4 and Xbox One.

  • Intel may not sell six-core Xeons for low-end servers, but they'll happily sell you the exact same part for your laptop workstation. Lenovo built one. Six cores, as we said, 128GB RAM, Quadro P3200 graphics, 4K 15" screen, up to 6TB of storage, Thunderbolt 3, and built-in LTE. With all that it still weighs in at a fairly reasonable 2.45 kg (5.4 lbs). Price TBA, but for comparison the smaller P52s with 4 cores, Quadro P500, 4k screen, 32GB RAM and 1TB SSD runs $2090 right now.

  • Elasticsearch the full-text search engine that sucks less than any of the alternatives now supports... SQL? NoSQL is now YeSQL I guess.


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Wednesday, June 13


Daily News Stuff 13 June 2018

  • Intel set to release 8 core mainstream and 22 core high end chips this year?  To respond to AMD's 8 core mainstrem chips from last year and their just announced 32 core high end chips.

  • SD cards go PCIe.  Finally.  Either make them USB or PCIe and be done with it.  SATA goes next.  In the future there will be one cable for everything.  It may fall back to USB 2.0 speeds half the time because the devices can't work out anything better, but there will only be one cable.

  • Speaking of PCIe get set for PCIe 4.0.  And PCIe 5.0 soon after.

  • Vue Native is here to compete with React Native for building mobile apps with tools that are slightly less horrible than the other options.

  • Python 3.7rc1 12 Jun 2018  (first release candidate for Python 3.7)

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Tuesday, June 12


Daily News Stuff 12 June 2018

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Monday, June 11


Daily News Stuff 11 June 2018

Queen's Birthday long weekend edition.  I got nothing.  Not even fireworks, thanks to the NSW State Government.  So here's a few random bits.
  • E3 is here, but it looks like an off year; no hardware announcements, just an outbreak of sequelitis.  Elder Scrolls LXXVI and such.

  • I'm reminded by that Tyan Ryzen server motherboard that you can get Ryzen servers right now if you look around a bit.  It's good value and I might be tempted if Europe weren't so preoccupied with packing the internet with explosives and lighting the fuse.

  • Someone wants to build the C256 that Commodore designed in the 1980s but never released.

  • Udoo is Kickstarting a Ryzen embedded development board.  For those who need just a little more horsepower than the Raspberry Pi.  (For example, those taking the sensible approach and emulating that C256.)  It's less than 5" square, yet supports up to 32GB of RAM and four 4K displays.  Oh, and it has an Arduino chip in one corner.  Starts at $229 with two CPU cores and Vega 3 graphics, and $309 with four cores and Vega 8.

  • Huawei have released the MediaPad M5.  If you play 3D games on Android, it's a big advance over the M3, with twice the GPU performance.  Otherwise it's basically the same device, except that the headphone socket has vanished.  In a shrinking market for small tablets, though, it's worth a look.


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