You know when grown-ups tell you everything's going to be fine, and you think they're probably lying to make you feel better?
Yes.
Everything's going to be fine.

Wednesday, December 21

Geek

Daily News Stuff 21 December 2022

Take Two Edition

Top Story


Tech News



February

  • On February 1 we scored some name-brand toilet paper, checked out PhoenixNAP, and hired an alient bug in a skin suit.

  • On February 2 Google made $20 billion in profit in a single quarter, the US Senate introduced a right-to-repair bill which has gone precisely nowhere, and it looks like the encoding of fancy quotes broke somewhere during the server move.

  • On February 3 the Wormhole cross-blockchain platform got hacked for $326 million which used to be a lot, the WD Black SN770 SSD was okay, the RTX 3090 Ti appeared but you couldn't buy one even if you had the money which you didn't, and not just boing but super-boingy.



  • On February 4 someone crossed the streams when Nick Rekieta gave a shout out to Pipkin Pippa, the bullshit EARN IT Act came back, everything in the article was wrong, and a large Android phone with a stylus at a not insane price.

  • On February 5 GoFundMe decided to steal $9 million, Apple announced that it would take a 27% cut of every payment it didn't process, Facebook's stock price fell off a cliff, and Cisco's small business routers coded.

  • On February 6 GoFundMe decided not to steal $9 million after all, spam blacklists were out of control, Twitter unveiled its new hugbox feature which has since disappeared without trace, six more reasons why Facebook is doomed, and making Sus Nuggies for the Tongue-Stupid.



  • On February 7 acts of terrorism that never happened for $400 please Alex, the CEO of Spotify decided to divide the baby into equal sevenths, ENS went full Margaret Sanger, and we predicted a world of pain for American tech companies, which indeed came to pass though not exactly as expected.

  • On February 8 the USG DHS was on the LO for MDM, Gigabyte had shiny new haptops, Intel was bleeding cash on Optane, and Nvidia failed to purchase Arm.

  • On February 9 we were shopping for 4TB SSDs - which due to subsequent events are still waiting to be used, squaring the circle with a knife, the most profitable arrest in human history, RAID-Z expansion was go.



  • On February 10 SpaceX lost 40 brand new satellites - not due to a launch failure but a geomagnetic storm, Western Digital lost 6.5 exabytes of flash chips which still is a lot, accelerating Python by rewriting it in C, and whatever happened to that new season of Futurama anyway?

  • On February 11 Russia sentenced three teenagers to prison over a plot to blow up a government building - in Minecraft, GDPR violations all the way down, and AMD got approval for its acquisition of Xilinx.

  • On February 12 Twitter suffered a sudden total existence failure which unfortuntely was resolved, Cisco offered $20 billion in cash to buy Spatula City, and lake leaks got it right.



  • On February 13 Binance invested $200 million in Forbes - which is more interesting in hindsight than it was at the time, Sony offered a $3600 walkman, and the Big List of Bad Bots.

  • On February 14 two was one and one was none, someone misconfigured an S3 bucket, Sapphire Rapids vs. Milan-X only now Genoa is here and Sapphire Rapids still isn't, $2 million bug bounties, France went nuclear, and on second thought that was actually stupid.

  • On February 15 paying your taxes in Ugly Monkey JPEGs, a good $120 CPU, and Android virtual machines.



  • On February 16 you're blockchaining wrong, AMD's market cap exceeded Intel's - it's now less, but only very slightly, Akamai bought Linode for a not-insane price, Google was dying, and writing your own Minecraft server - in Bash.

  • On February 17 WE GOT HIT BY LIGHTNING. Oh, and Audible was stealing royalties from authors.

  • On February 18 Sethra Linode got us back onto the server farm, the Sydney region got hit by 150,000 lightning bolts, Wordle and Gizmodo were watching you, and all of Canada's major banks somehow experienced technical issues at the exact same time.



  • On February 19 New York was fucked, Nunchuck.io told Canada to get fucked, $1500 NUCs, and Google banned Apple.

  • On February 20 low-quality Twitter bots ahoy, and Clearview AI needed to be nuked from orbit.

  • On February 21 explaining the OpenSea heist as a Dortmunder novel, San Francisco tried to persuade workers to come back without any noticeable success, and yes we have no diodes, we have no diodes today.



  • On February 22 crypto engineers would welcome a prolonged "crypto winter" said a guy who already has all the money he could possibly need, Atlassian tried to wreck Australia's electricity, and Firefox was not okay.

  • On February 23 my internet was still out after being vaporised by lightning, the guy behind Ruby on Rails noticed to encroaching fascism, fuck you Samsung, the Aerocool Cipher had 15 drive bays and cost just $75 and isn't available in Australia, and IRS delenda est but that's nothing new.

  • On February 24 it was a bad day, I considered the possibility of moving out of Sydney, I had a ping time of two seconds to Google, and you'll never get rid of the Dane.



  • On February 25 I found a house I didn't end up buying - given what happened with interest rates since then probably a good thing, Samsung shipped two or three phones with flawed encryption, and forget I mentioned that.

  • On February 26 I got my internet back - temporarily as it turned out, the great unarchived HoloEN off-collab, Russia got shut out by the mean girls, poverty was relative, the USPS told the EPA to get fucked, and the Status Page Status Page.

  • On February 27 Elon Musk hadn't bought Twitter yet, LAPSU$ Darknesss hacked Nvidia, and Russia turned out to own $500 billion in fairy gold.



  • And then on February 28 I continued the home hunt in New House City, BitConnect's found was charged with operating a $2.4 billion Ponzi scheme which used to be a lot, and Apple filed a patent for building a computer into a keyboard like (insert mile long list of prior art here).



Disclaimer: Bet you didn't know Golden Brown was a Brubeck original.  Unless you were reading this blog, last February.

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Tuesday, December 20

Geek

Daily News Stuff 20 December 2022

Party Like It's Party Night Edition

Top Story

  • Apple is having trouble building a new Mac Pro.  (Tom's Hardware)

    They originally planned to use the M1 Extreme - made from four M1 Max chips, giving a total of 40 cores.  They couldn't get it to work, so they planned instead on the M2 Extreme, with a total of 48 cores.  They can't get that to work either.

    Meanwhile AMD is shipping 96 core CPUs - and you can use two of them.  And they have a 128 core model up their sleeves.


  • Russia meanwhile can't get CPUs at all.  (Tom's Hardware)

    They're even worse off than China, which can make its own 12nm chips, albeit at high cost and in limited volumes.  The most advanced chipmaking facilities in Russia are at 90nm - nearly 20 years behind Taiwan, Korea, and the US.


Tech News

January

  • On January 1 we looked back at 2021, alleged rumour leaks of AMD's Ryzen 6000 were 100% accurate, and SIXBIT OR BUST.

  • On January 2 we enjoyed Microsoft's Y2.022K bug, Intel killed AVX-512 on the desktop, Lenovo's Y700 tablet leaked and you still can't get it outside China, and a bank, jealous of this crypto stuff, accidentally misplaced $176 million, which used to be a lot.

  • On January 3 Huawei's revenue was down by $100 billion, which still is a lot, Apple was planning a monitor that was merely exorbitantly expensive, Dwarf Fortress was heading to Steam, and don't work with FOOF.



  • On January 4 Elizabeth Holmes was found guilty on four chargers of bullshit with intent, CES was a whole bunch of nothin', Intel's Arc A380 was only mostly terrible, rumours of AMD's Ryzen 7000 were 0% accurate, Apple hit a market cap of $3 trillion despite not having any products worth buying, and 14,000 gaming companies in China shut down because China.

  • On January 5 AMD announced Ryzen 6000 for laptops and Ryzen 5000X3D for desktops, Intel announced 22 new desktop CPUs several of which weren't awful, and Asus and Lenovo were missing the Four Essential Keys.

  • On January 6 sunflowers ruined everything, Honda joined in with its own Y2.022K bug, and Arbix Finance stole $10 million in customer funds which used to be a lot back in, oh, 1913 or so.



  • On January 7 we ate popcorn and watched communists fight over money, Kazakhstan shut down the internet, a New York art gallery owner lost $2 million worth of monkeys, the hot new anime series was So It's a Ponzi Scheme, So What?, and QNAP announced a $7500 NAS that automatically auctions off your personal data and splits the proceeds with you.

  • On January 8 we blocked Europe at the router, SonicWall joined the Y2.022K bug party, the Ruby MongoDB library changed what "OR" meant, Web3 was doing great, and a fire in a critical part of ASML's Berlin factory didn't fuck things up enough to be noticed above the global background level of complete disaster.

  • On January 9 we answered questions - remember that?, the James Web Space Telescope entirely failed to explode, and YouTube launched into an entire year of brokenness.



  • On January 10 Canon printers went DRM free because they couldn't get the DRM chips for the toner cartridges, Pixy's First Law of Personal Responsibility, and someone sprayed those damn sunflowers with RoundUp.

  • On January 11 what the internet really needed was more socialism, securing your QNAP NAS with this one easy trick, Apple tried to do something good (ish) for once and the phone companies blocked it, and building your own Cobalt Qube.

  • On January 12 Web3 was still doing great, the PCIe 6 spec was finalised (a year later there are still no PCIe 5 cards available anywhere), and friends don't let friends run IIS.



  • On January 13 I made the mistake of not buying two Lenovo Tab M8 FHDs, Plausible Analytics was plausible, Intel's 12400 was pretty good, and Apple fixed an unintended kill switch in iOS.

  • On January 14 our hosting company found the missing payment and we didn't get cut off, TSMC increased CapEx for 2022 to $44 billion, QNAP released 317 security patches, Chrome patched a long-existing and very obvious security hole that affected every browser in the world, and China made NFTs worse. Somehow.

  • On January 15 Russia "neutralised" the REvil hacker gang by which they mean they assigned them a new name and new targets, FedEx planned to deploy laster missile-defense systems, and what happened to that Google antitrust case anyway?



  • On January 16 it was question time again, Safari leaked your browser history, Intel's next gen server chips where delayed to Q3 - which turned out to be wildly optimistic, and you couldn't back up a MacBook.

  • On January 17 Tonga's internet went down due to (checks notes) being blown up by a volcano, NPM was worse than Cthulhu, you couldn't get a 3090 Ti, and emulating the Sega Genesis.

  • On January 18 Google banned an Android app because they - Google - translated the description incorrectly, and then banned it again because an app without logins didn't have a test login, the RP2040 cost 70 cents, and China did China stuff.



  • On January 19 Microsoft announced it was buying Actilizard for $687 trillion, everyone planned price hikes, SQLite was genuinely good, and regulatees told regulators that regulation was bad.

  • On January 20 disinformation was disinformation, Intel announced 20 new mobile CPUs, DevToys was a toy for devs, and the Polygon blockchain fell in a heap. Again.

  • On January 21 NFT marketplace OpenSea vanished for a couple of hours and took every wallet supporting NFTs with it because the blockchain is distributed and resilient you guys, use Ada, Twitter was - still mostly is - stupid, and 78% of planes could land safely with mobile phones switched on so just hope you're not on one of the 22%.



  • On January 22 intel announce a $20 billion facility in Ohio, Google was working tirelessly to prevent offense to inanimate objects, China was back to doing China stuff, and the Radeon 6500 XT sucked as a desktop graphics card because it was designed as a mobile graphics card.

  • On January 23 we explained Hololive, Australia's government said the surveillance state was "maybe kind of bad" and naturally lost the election, everything had two prices and three elevators, and fuck WordPress.

  • On January 24 an entire country got DDOSed off the internet just so that someone could cheat at Minecraft, you can't log in from here, how Medium turned to shit, and how everything else did.



  • On January 25 the crew of The Incomparable including Lex Friedman with an e were definitely probably not communists, save 99% on your Cloudfront bill with this one simple trick, hackers stoll a million dollars worth of store brand ugly monkey JPEGs, and Russia was totally not going to invade Ukraine swearsies.

  • On January 26 Google dropped its new spying scheme in favour of a different new spying scheme, there was a privilege escalation and/or remote execution vulnerability in everything, there was a shortage, and Google banned the numeral 1.

  • On January 27 in particular there was a shortage of my usual gluten-free food which I have since resolved by buying an entire house and a larger fridge and a separate freezer, solving Apple's 30% cut problem, and the RTX 3050 wasn't entirely awful.



  • On January 28 Facebook's blockchain adventure came to an abrupt end when it got eaten by a grue, Lex Fridman (without an e) got hacked because QNAP, Microsoft got hit with 46 billion modems, a MacOS update broke critical apps for the first time ever cough cough, and the RTX 3050 was sold out already.

  • On January 29 80% of NFTs created on OpenSea were fraud or spam according to OpenSea, Qubit asked thieves to please return the $80 billion they - wait, $80 million, hardly seems worth it, Samsung definitely did not dump 763,000 gallons of sulfuric acid into an Austin creek, something was headed for the Moon, and Neil who?

  • On January 30 the Wonderland crypto protocol turned out the work of a serial fraudster unlike everything else in the industry which is mostly the work of first-time fraudsters, case in point - over three thousand blockchain projects stole users' money and disappeared in 2021, the IRS decided that maybe you shouldn't have to go through an audition just to pay your taxes, and chip makers started investing more in older, cheaper processes.



  • On January 31 there were still no nuggies (a situation which has improved over the course of the year - I currently have ten boxes), censorship was bad, memory leaks were worse, civil asset forfeiture stole ten times as much as social media scammers, and PCs were back on the menu.


Disclaimer: Blame it on the bogey.

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Monday, December 19

Geek

Daily News Stuff 19 December 2022

Last Shopping Day Before The Year In Review Edition

Top Story

Tech News

  • He did warn us.




  • And then:




    This is odd to me because I still think of Lex Fridman as the scorekeeper for The Incomparable's Game Show podcast.  Guess he's been doing other stuff as well the last few years.

    I think Musk does need someone to handle the day-to-day bullshit at Twitter and I also think that there are very few candidates who wouldn't be complete disasters.


  • Comparing Intel and AMD's mid-range CPUs.  (Tom's Hardware)

    On the one hand, the 13600K is 1.6% faster in gaming than the 7700X while being $30 cheaper - and having cheaper motherboard and RAM options available.

    On the other hand, an overclocked 7700X uses less power than a stock 13600K.

    Not a huge amount in it.

    You can use last year's DDR4 motherboards - with a BIOS update - to run the 13600K.  On the third hand, Intel is introducing a new socket next year so you'll never be able to upgrade beyond the current generation.  AMD's current motherboards are more expensive because they already are the new generation, and you should be able to upgrade through at least two generations of new CPUs.


  • SpaceX launched three missions in 36 hours, including its 3000th Starlink satellite and a record 15th mission for one lucky Falcon 9 booster.  (WCCFTech)

    In between doing dumb things at Twitter and showing up at some sportsball event.


  • The Golden Age of TV has been cancelled after it turned out to be spray painted plywood.  (New York Times)

    The number of series being produced is down 40% since 2019 - and though they don't give exact numbers, it sounds like most of the cuts have come in the last six month.  Netflix is losing subscribers, Disney+ is losing money, and Discovery is losing staff as fast as it can.


  • Year in review starts tomorrow.  I'll have to find some music to sprinkle through it, since I wasn't doing so much of that this year.


Disclaimer: Hololive is better than Netflix.

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Sunday, December 18

Geek

Daily News Stuff 18 December 2022

Three Months* To Christmas Edition

Top Story

  • No, Virginia, shader prefetching is not broken on AMD's new Radeon 7000 graphics cards.  (Tom's Hardware)

    This rumour was circulating yesterday, based on a comment in the code for AMD's open source graphics drivers.  It would be odd if prefetch didn't work on these new RDNA3 cards, because it worked in RDNA2 and indeed in the original RDNA.

    AMD has explained what that comment means: The feature that doesn't work and is disabled in the drivers is an experimental new prefetch mode planned for RDNA4.

    As the article points out, AMD has a history of including test features in production chips and just quietly not using them if they don't work or aren't needed yet (so long as none of the planned features are affected).  The connection points needed for the cache chips in the 5800X3D gaming CPU and Milan-X server CPUs were included in every Ryzen die sold for at least a year before a product appeared that actually used them.

    So don't hold off buying an 7900 XT because of imaginary issues.  Hold off because at $899 the $999 7900 XTX is better value.

    And if you're spending $999 on a 7900 XTX you might as well spend $1199 on the RTX 4080, which although slightly slower on rasterisation, has much better ray tracing, and of course Cuda support, and faster OpenCL in many cases.

    And if you're spending $1199 on an RTX 4080, you might as well go all the way and spend $1599 on the RTX 4090, which is in a class of its own and the fastest graphics card you can buy today.

    Which nobody should do because $1599 is far too much money to spend on a graphics card.  (Never mind the Australian pricing, which is just horrifying.)

Tech News

  • I mentioned before that the upcoming lower-end Raptor Lake parts - the 13400 and 13500 in particular - may provide the best price-performance around for normal people who aren't buying RTX 4090s.  The 13400, for example, has the same configuration and offers similar performance the the previous generation's 12600K, which cost around 50% more.

    That may be because it is the previous generation's 12600K.  (Tom's Hardware)

    There's not a huge difference between the 13th generation cores and 12th generation; the major change is that Intel doubled the number of low-power Efficiency cores (E-cores).

    Since the 12400, 12500, and 12600 didn't include any E-cores at all, Intel can just re-use previous generation chips and not disable the E-cores this time around.

    Which sounds a bit sus but actually makes perfect sense; you get a faster CPU for your money and it's cheaper for Intel to produce.

    Ballpark numbers for multi-threaded workloads should put the 13400 at 25% faster than the 12400, and the 13500 at 50% faster than the 12500.  Performance for single-threaded tasks won't change much, but those E-cores - four on the 13400, eight on the 13500 - will stop Windows cluttering up your P-cores with the infinite amount of bullshit it likes to do in the background.

    If pricing is similar to 12th generation the 13500 would be my recommendation for this generation for anyone who doesn't need absolute maximum performance - and who isn't concerned about threads running at different speeds.

    I need a couple of PCs for the new office and while my main workstation will be a Ryzen 7950X, anything else is likely to be a 13500.


  • Meanwhile in laptop land Intel's 13980HX will soon deliver 24 cores sort of.  (WCCFTech)

    8 Performance cores (P-cores) and 16 E-cores.  Sine E-cores run half as fast as P-cores, it will likely be the same speed overall as AMD's upcoming 16 core laptop CPUs.


  • -108 diopters.  (Points de Vue)

    My eyesight is bad enough that I can't order bifocal or multifocal glasses online - I just have four pairs of glasses (reading, computer, distance, and sunglasses).  But by ordering online four pairs work out cheaper than what I used to pay for a single pair locally.  And also of course if I lose one pair there's another pair I can wear to find them.

    But -108 is a whole different ballpark, and indeed a new world record.


  • If you're running a public Minecraft server between versions 1.7.2 and 1.18.2 - which is a lot of versions, since it updates once or twice a year - time to get a patched version now.  (Bleeping Computer)

    There's a worm in the wild actively exploiting unpatched Minecraft servers.  You can tell it's evil because it's indented by two spaces.


  • This is that 8.4" tablet / gaming toy thingy I mentioned yesterday - the ONEXPLAYER 2.



    From above it looks perfectly reasonable and compact (when the controllers are detached) but as soon as he turns it at an angle you can see how chunky this thing is - it's a small production run of a complete PC with cooling fans, and thin is expensive.

    It's still an amazing little device and I'd love to get one.  You can take off the controllers and turn them into a Bluetooth game controller, and there's an optional keyboard and pressure-sensitive stylus.  And for the size, it's impressively powerful, with 8 CPU cores, 12 graphics cores, and up to 32GB of RAM and 2TB of NVMe SSD, plus a full 40Gbps USB 4 port.

    Not cheap though.


* Rule One of Project Estimation: Think of a number, double it, add one, and use the next larger unit.

Disclaimer: This may cause friction if you are using SI units.  "Pixy, accounts payable wants to know why we just got an invoice for 201 kilometres of CAT8 cable."

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Saturday, December 17

Geek

Daily News Stuff 17 December 2022

The Cat's Eaten It Edition

Top Story

  • What do you call 1000 dead cryptocurrencies at the bottom of the sea?  A good start.  (Tom's Hardware)

    After everyone and their cat jumped on the bandwagon in 2021, 2022 saw a net reduction in the number of cryptocurrencies plaguing the world.  Not a dramatic reduction - a little under 10% - but we'll take what we can get.


Tech News

  • Nuclear power is too slow - but it doesn't need to be.  (Jack Devanney)

    Back in the sixties, California built a 500MW nuclear power station in three years.  Reactor builds started in 1973 took an average of sixteen years to be completed and connected to the grid.

    The cause was a combination of a shortage of expertise at the high end, and an excess of idiots in government.

    But Japan maintained an average completion time of less than four years from 1963 through 2009, which shows what you can do if you feed regulators to the sharks.


  • Installing Linux on a $8 computer.  (The Little Engineer That Could)

    The $8 computer in question is the 0x64 board, a RISC-V competitor to the Raspberry Pi Pico.  The CPU in the 0x64 has a proper MMU so it can run full-fledged Linux and not just an embedded version of it.

    The 0x64 dev tools are apparently still a bit rough and ready at this stage, and the author found that the easiest way to get Linux onto the board was to use a Pi Pico as a programming interface.


  • The Periodic Tiling Conjecture is false.  (Quanta)

    If you're familiar with Penrose tiling we know that with as few as two suitably shaped tiles, you can tile a surface of any size without any gaps - but so that the pattern of the tiles doesn't repeat, something called aperiodicity.  But we also know that there is no single shape that holds that property, at least not for two-dimensional surfaces.

    The conjecture was that this would also hold in higher dimensions - any shape that could fill the space without any gaps could not also exhibit aperiodicity.

    Turns out it can.

    Keep that in mind when planning your next seven-dimensional bathroom or kitchen.


  • The ONEXPLAYER 2 is an 8.4" tablet with a 2560x1600 screen.  (Liliputing)

    And a Ryzen 6800U and up to 32GB of RAM and 2TB of SSD.

    They took the two things I want that nobody currently makes - an 8" tablet with a high-resolution screen, and a Ryzen 6800U laptop with 32GB of RAM - and smooshed them together into a useless mess.

    Sigh.

Disclaimer: Though if someone were to send me one I wouldn't turn it down.

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Friday, December 16

Geek

Daily News Stuff 16 December 2022

It's Gone Quantum Edition

Top Story

  • If you always wanted a quantum computer of your own but didn't have the millions of dollars and the endless rivers of liquid helium SpinQ has three portable models designed just for you sort of.  (Tom's Hardware)

    I say sort of because the theoretical capacity of a quantum computer scales exponentially with the number of qubits - each qubit essentially being another orthogonal dimension of parallel universes that the computer can compute in.  IBM just announced a 433 qubit quantum computer, and 2^433 is a very big number.

    This matters because if SpinQ announced a cheap portable quantum computer with a large number of qubits we'd know immediately that it was bullshit.  But the SpinQ qubit count maxes out at... 3.

    So, yeah, I'm prepared to believe that a $57,000, 90lb quantum that is slower than a first generation iPhone might actually exist.

    Probably not a hot item this Christmas though.


  • All my remaining Amazon packages arrived today, including one from Kentucky that took an interesting route to get here.

    So I ordered some more.


  • Guests arrive on the 27th.  Gotta vacuum, or paint, or plant vines, or whatever you're supposed to do when you have guests.

Tech News



Disclaimer: I didn't realise there was any demand for terrible Gizmodo articles.

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Thursday, December 15

Geek

Daily News Stuff 15 December 2022

Recursively Awful Edition

Top Story

  • ChatGPT wrote a terrible Gizmodo article.  (Gizmodo)
    Suffice it to say, multiple attempts brought less than satisfactory results. For one thing, ChatGPT kept including incorrect information in its explainer—sometimes mixing up basic facts about the history of its own technology (factual inaccuracy has been an ongoing problem for the program). In other instances, it skimped on the details in critical areas, writing text that read more like OpenAI ad copy than a thoughtful explainer. In at least one instance, it forgot its own name, repeatedly telling me that it didn’t know anything about a "ChatGPT" and thus couldn’t help with my request. In general, it struggled to find a good balance of factual information, story structure, and accessible, humorous language, when putting its stories together.
    The comments are exactly what you would expect:
    The joke is so obvious, I’m not even going to bother.


  • Looks like all my Amazon packages that I was hoping would arrive by Christmas, will.

    One seems to have taken three days by plane to travel from the US to Australia, which is odd.  But given that the expected delivery date was January 11, the fact that it has already arrived in Sydney and left again for regional NSW is promising.


Tech News

  • Samsung has used PIM to speed up AMD's Instinct MI100 GPUs by 150% while reducing power consumption by 60%.  (Tom's Hardware)

    PIM stands for Processor in Memory - adding compute logic directly into the memory chips.  That means data doesn't have to be read from those chips, processed, and written back; everything happens in one place.

    That does depend on all the data required for a given computation be located on the same chip, so it's not remotely a general-purpose solution.  But in those cases where you can use it (like training chatbots to write terrible articles for terrible tech news sites) it can bring huge benefits.


  • Meanwhile SRAM is dead.  (Wikichip)

    Moving from 7nm to 5nm, logic sizes shrank by close to 50%, but SRAM sizes only shrank by 20%.  Moving from 5nm to 3nm, it looks like SRAM sizes will only shrink by 5%.

    That's not good, because a lot of performance depends on getting data into large on-chip caches.

    AMD has already tackled this with its 5800X3D, which stacks a separate SRAM chip on top of the CPU, with thousands of interconnects, and with the just released Radeon 7000 range, which separates out the cache and memory controllers onto their own chips on a multi-chip module.

    Expect more of that in the future, and in particular more vertical stacking.


  • The iKOOLCORE R1 is another of those weird little Chinese micro-PCs.  (Liliputing)

    This one has four 2.5Gb Ethernet ports, aimed at the small router/firewall market.  It also has a single HDMI port, a USB-C port, and two USB-A.  At three inches square and two inches high, it's even smaller than a NUC.

    Prices start at $145 - in China.


Disclaimer: Which is better than in Minecraft, but not much.

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Wednesday, December 14

Geek

Daily News Stuff 14 December 2022

Company Store Edition

Top Story

  • Work 16 years and what do you get?  A glass of champagne and six million net.  (PC Gamer)

    Cult game Dwarf Fortress, which first appeared in 2006 and has been available for free ever since (and is still available for free) finally has a Steam edition with graphics and has sold 300,000 copies in its first week.

    Even after the cuts for Steam and publisher Kitfox, the game's two authors each just retroactively made 16 years worth of six-figure salaries.

    Advice: Hire a really good accountant.


  • I started playing Pathfinder: Kingmaker last night.  Oops.  Haven't played any RPGs in a long while and even though this one isn't some legendary classic I was still playing six hours later.

    Also, Nvidia MX350 laptop graphics?  Basically worthless.

Tech News



Disclaimer: Just mostly.

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Tuesday, December 13

Geek

Daily News Stuff 13 December 2022

And There Was Much Rejoicing Edition

Top Story



Disclaimer: Or don't.

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Monday, December 12

Geek

Daily News Stuff 12 December 2022

Only 378 Shopping Days Until Christmas Edition

Top Story

  • NASA's Orion (not that one) Moon thingy has safely landed back on Earth.  (WCCFTech)

    As part of the Artemis 1 mission it travelled to the Moon, orbited it - sort of - and returned to Earth 25 days later.

    NASA is planning a manned lunar orbit for 2024.

    Which is great and all, but (a) Apollo 8 did that in 1968, (b) private Japanese company ispace with only 200 employees launched an unmanned lunar lander yesterday, and (c) SpaceX plans to land a fully crewed Starship on the Moon in 2024.

    Which date might slip a bit because Starship has not yet had a successful orbital flight - and has not been cleared by the FAA for orbital tests.  On the other hand, SpaceX has six Falcon 9 launches scheduled before the end of the year, so they're not just sitting around trolling idiots on Twitter either.


Tech News



Disclaimer: From the Earth to the Moon, and Around the Moon.  Not science fiction anymore, but a major motion picture and/or tasty snack!

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