Agam Shah

About the Author Agam Shah


HPE shows off The Machine prototype without memristors

In 2004, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise’s Kirk Bresniker set out to make radical changes to computer architecture with The Machine and drew out the first concept design on a whiteboard.

At the time Bresniker, now chief architect at HP Labs, wanted to build a system that could drive computing into the future. The goal was to build a computer that used cutting-edge technologies like memristors and photonics.

It’s been an arduous journey, but HPE on Tuesday finally showed a prototype of The Machine at a lab in Fort Collins, Colorado.

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HPE shows off The Machine prototype without memristors

In 2004, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise’s Kirk Bresniker set out to make radical changes to computer architecture with The Machine and drew out the first concept design on a whiteboard.

At the time Bresniker, now chief architect at HP Labs, wanted to build a system that could drive computing into the future. The goal was to build a computer that used cutting-edge technologies like memristors and photonics.

It’s been an arduous journey, but HPE on Tuesday finally showed a prototype of The Machine at a lab in Fort Collins, Colorado.

It’s not close to what the company envisioned with The Machine when it was first announced in 2014 but follows the same principle of pushing computing into memory subsystems. The system breaks the limitations tied to conventional PC and server architecture in which memory is a bottleneck.

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Nvidia’s Volta-based DGX-1 supercomputer puts 400 servers in a box

You won’t need to buy a rack of 400 servers if you have one high-powered Nvidia DGX-1 supercomputer with a Volta GPU sitting on your desktop.

The DGX-1 supercomputer, which looks like a regular rack server, gets most of its computing power from eight Tesla V100 GPUs.

The GPU, the first one based on the brand-new Volta architecture, was introduced at the company’s GPU Technology Conference in San Jose, Calif., on Wednesday.

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Microsoft’s new Windows 10 S hopes to take on Chrome OS

Microsoft hopes a new Windows 10 operating system called Windows 10 S will usurp Chromebooks’ domination in education and provide a better way for students to learn.

The new version of Windows, announced today, is targeted at teachers, students, artists, and creators. It’s got features very similar to that of Chrome OS in Chromebooks, which dominates the education market.

It has a traditional Windows 10 desktop look, and will only run applications downloaded from the Windows App store. That means all applications will be verified and secure.

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Apple’s Mac Pro gets crushed by new HP Zbook laptops

Apple’s Mac Pro has been ignored for so long that even Windows 10 mobile workstations are catching up on features and performance.

Take HP’s latest Zbook laptop workstations , which were announced on Friday. These heavy built laptops — which is why they are called mobile workstations — have comparable memory and storage capacity technology to the Mac Pro, but excel in other areas.

The laptops feature Thunderbolt 3 ports, DDR4 memory, Intel’s latest Kaby Lake-based Core and Xeon processors, and the latest GPUs from Nvidia and AMD.

By comparison the Mac Pro has Thunderbolt 2 ports, an old AMD GPU, DDR3 memory and Intel Xeon processors based on the Ivy Bridge architecture, which were released in 2013.

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Apple’s Mac Pro gets crushed on features by new HP Zbook laptops

Apple’s Mac Pro has been ignored for so long that even Windows 10 mobile workstations are catching up on features and performance.

Take HP’s latest Zbook laptop workstations , which were announced on Friday. These heavy built laptops — which is why they are called mobile workstations — have comparable memory and storage capacity technology to the Mac Pro, but excel in other areas.

The laptops feature Thunderbolt 3 ports, DDR4 memory, Intel’s latest Kaby Lake-based Core and Xeon processors, and the latest GPUs from Nvidia and AMD.

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Samsung to start making chips faster than ones in Galaxy S8

Samsung is now ready to produce faster and even more power-efficient chips than the ones it uses the latest Galaxy S8 smartphones.

In the fourth quarter, Samsung will start producing chips on the 10-nanometer LPP (low-power plus) process. These chips are faster than existing chips because of an enhanced 3D structure.

On average, the new chips made on the new process will be 10 percent faster and 15 percent more power efficient than the first wave of 10-nanometer chips like the Samsung Exynos 8895, which is one of two processors used in the S8 devices.

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Facebook’s Caffe2 AI tools come to iPhone, Android, and Raspberry Pi

New intelligence can be added to mobile devices like the iPhone, Android devices, and low-power computers like Raspberry Pi with Facebook’s new open-source Caffe2 deep-learning framework.

Caffe2 can be used to program artificial intelligence features into smartphones and tablets, allowing them to recognize images, video, text, and speech and be more situationally aware.

It’s important to note that Caffe2 is not an AI program, but a tool allowing AI to be programmed into smartphones. It takes just a few lines of code to write learning models, which can then be bundled into apps.

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Microsoft’s cool quantum computing plan embraces cryogenic memory

Microsoft has crazy quantum computing plans. It is building hardware based on a particle that hasn’t been discovered, and the company now wants to make super-cool memory for quantum computers.

The company is working with Rambus to develop and build prototype computers with memory subsystems that can be cooled at cryogenic temperatures. Cryogenic temperatures typically are below minus 180 degrees Celsius or minus 292 degrees Fahrenheit.

Quantum computers could eventually replace today’s PCs and servers and promise to be significantly faster. But the systems are notoriously unstable and need to be stored in refrigerators for faster and secure operation. As an example, D-Wave’s 2000Q quantum computer needs to be kept significantly cooler than supercomputers so operations don’t break down.

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Intel scraps annual IDF event as it looks beyond PCs

After 20 years, Intel is scrapping its marquee annual Intel Developer Forum event, where tech enthusiasts gathered to load up on the chipmaker’s news and technologies.

IDF started off in 1997 as a small event in Palm Springs, California. The show was later moved to San Francisco and vastly expanded during a boom in the PC market.

But with the PC market slowing down, the attraction of IDF has also dwindled. Intel’s future isn’t tied to PCs but instead to areas like data centers, autonomous cars, modems, the internet of things, and manufacturing. 

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Prices of SSDs and DRAM will crash in 2019, Gartner predicts

The prices of PCs, smartphones, and tablets are going up, with higher component prices to blame. Shortages in DRAM, flash, batteries and displays are hitting buyers in the wallet.

Minor relief is in sight next year when prices of memory and NAND flash — which is used in SSDs — will start to gradually decline. But prices will plummet big time in 2019, predicted Jon Erensen, research director for semiconductors at Gartner.

The impact could be felt on the prices of PCs and mobile devices. But it’s too early to predict the exact impact of the projected NAND and DRAM price crashes on PCs and mobile devices, Erensen said.

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HP rises again to be the world’s top PC maker as Lenovo slips

It was another tough quarter for PC shipments, but there was good news for HP, which edged Lenovo to regain the title of world top’s PC maker, according to IDC.

Worldwide PC shipments totaled 60.3 million units in the first quarter of 2017, growing by just 0.6 percent compared to the same quarter the previous year.

IDC previously forecast a decline of 1.8 percent in PC shipments, so the positive growth was a sign the PC market is recovering. Quarterly PC shipments reported positive growth for the first time since the first quarter of 2012. 

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