If this is true, I haven't seen any of their test vehicles doing this in try outs. They all hovered very controlled, and descends slowly and steadily. This landing was from what I could see the definition of "out of control", trying to regain control and desperately trying to complete the mission.
This landing was faaaar from "incredibly close to success". It was incredibly close to just barely completing the mission. A successful mission would have been the rocket hovering in a stable manner, and descending slowly, and touching down in the center of the landing zone, with absolutely no drama. This rocket came tumbling down in high speed, with the landing struts deploying just seconds before touchdown, desperately trying to even hit the barge at all, veering left and right in what looked like in a panic, and eventually failing to even keep up-right which resulted in a explosion. Whomever or whatever detonated the rocket did it far to late with the rocket was lying down at that moment. The explosion was far from controlled.. All in all, it was pretty far from close to success, afaik.
No BlueGene supercomputer used GPUs as accelerators. Their point was to joind a very large ammount of cpus off, as you say, "moderate performance", but with excellent performace per watt into unparallelled computeing power density.
Remember IBM supercomputer chips like the BlueGene family, Cell processor and various other POWER processors? IBM has been building supercomputers for the U.S. Government since forever and they only recently stopped making their own chips when they sold off their fabbing business to GloFo.
Little Endian Linux for OpenPOWER exists, and have for some time. SuSE (SLES 12), Debian (kernel v.3.13 and 94% of the software repository), Canonical (Ubuntu Server 14.04) and RedHat (RHEL 7 and RHEV) have distros ready to go. Canonical is a platinum level member of OpenPOWER Foundation and the poster child for compatibility, and Shuttleworth is traveling the world showcasing this.
That's why China has set up an own consortium based on OpenPOWER, the China Power Technology Alliance, CPTA. They are building a purely chinese OpenPOWER ecosystem, with all aspects of hardware and software.. like the CP1, a POWER8 clone with a Chinese crypto engine (since they didn't' want the american version, and wasn't allowed anyway).
The endianess problem is a nonissue with OpenPOWER since it's little endian, just like x86. A _very_ large portion of all open source software _will_ just work with a recompile, even if the project hasn't touched Power Architecture before. So, the money is already forked out, and it's done.
Why OpenPOWER as a separate entity from Power.org? I think it's because Freescale has all but quit developing Power Architecture. So there's essentially only IBM left doing active development of Power Architecture. And, I think that Freescale and IBM really have different goals for the future. Freescale is aiming at low performance (compared to POWER8) embedded systems, where ARM is gaining more and more ground. IBM isn't interested in going in that direction, and saw an opportunity to write a new chapter with POWER8 and forward, being able to ignore and break backwards compatibility with the legacy of Power Architecture. IBM isn't making money selling low margin hardware, they are in the business selling high margin technology and services. It probably won't matter to them if you in the future buys a OpenPOWER box from some white-box OEM vendor i Taiwan, with an Chinese designed OpenPOWER processor, fabbed by TSMC.. if they can charge you for using their applications, services and consultancy hours.
The issue at hand would be to detect an invasion fleet jumping in directly to our solar system. That's be an event probably releasing extreme amounts of energy. Considering it would be a fleet, I assumed it to be ships considerably larger than 200 m across, and more than a few. The reference was sci-fi movies so I gathered Star Destroyers or Independence day, Goa'uld or V motherships, i.e. kilometers across, and perhaps hundreds of them. Just the warping in millions of tons of matter into the solar system would release a gravity wave that'd be detectable. These ships will radiate enormous amounts of IR just by being lit buy the sun, not considering spill heating from the internal environment. Their propulsion would generate exotic energies, and/or release chemicals that would radiate in turn (and be harder to cloak). And if they were to communicate by something in the EM-band, that would also be detectable too, even if they were to use very focused beams, since there'd be scattering in the interplanetary dust leaving trails (like a cloud chamber, or comet trails). and the list goes on.
We actually have quite many detectors pointing in every direction and these are for detecting different kinds of interesting stuff. Gamma rays, radio, gravity waves, neutrinos, asteroids, and so forth. There are satellites and ground based detectors to make sure that there is essentially no blind spot, not even behind the Moon or the Sun, and the detectors are very very sensitive. These are all automatic and will report anomalies quite fast. Most of these are even linked to other detectors that would try to capture events in another medium. For instance, when we detect a gamma day burst, we want to detect it in optical and gravity as soon as possible. We also have an army of amateur astronomers with very good telescopes (with wide fields of view) trying to hunt asteroids, comets, and by all means.. aliens too (we've found none yet, in case you were wondering). So, in an event of an alien fleet would suddenly appear in our solar system, I'd guess that such an agent would register as an anomaly in all kinds of different detectors, and turn pretty much the world's eyes towards it within hours. Astronomers are very keen of detecting new and strange phenomena. I think the alien technology would be pretty advanced to cloak it from detection in such different mediums as broad spectrum electro magnetic (gamma, optical and radio), neutrino and gravity. I think such technology would have to be so utterly alien that we probably would detect an innovation, even in progress.. we might already be invaded and exploited. And what would be the point of fending off such innovation, if we wouldn't even take notice of it?
You are not an idiot for going for this. There's a vibrant market out there for products based on these languages, with a great community and it serves at least two plattforms which by all accounts won't be going away anytime soon. I would go for Objective C, since it's a more mature language, with lots of good documentation, learning materials, and all the frameworks in iOS and OSX is using this. Swift is still finding it's way.. so while you are learning ObjC, Swift will mature, and you will be established when the time comes for Swift. Let the bleeding edge developers work out the kinks first.
I know that enterprise grade hard drive are made to be spinning for years without fail, but there are hard drive that are made to be spun down and essentially powered off when idling. They are laptop drives. Again, not made for enterprise storage but neither is Blu-ray so I find it curious that this would be the USP of this solution.
I think Chrome OS or Android is the only way to go. Both Apple and Microsoft is trying to go in the same direction, and hide all the arcane intricacies and really simplify the computing experience for the common computer user. To varying degrees of success, I must admit, but I think it's the way forward for most of the users.
May I point out that the LLVM logo is a wyvern? http://llvm.org/Logo.html
The arguments for demoting Pluto from its planetary status still holds. And hardly anyone objects to Pluto and Charon together as a binary system. But this "new" insight does not promote Pluto/Charon to planetary status. Binary dwarf planet, binary kuiper belt object, binary plutoid. Absolutely. Binary planet? No.