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+ - nVidia GT300 First Silicon Yields Under 2%->

Submitted by RoFLKOPTr
RoFLKOPTr (1294290) writes "Several experts in semiconductor engineering, some who have overseen similar chips, were asked a couple of loaded questions: What is good yield for first silicon? What is good yield for a complex chip on a relatively new process? The answers ranged from a high of 50% to a low of 20% with a bunch of others clustered in the 30% range. Let's just call it one-third, plus or minus some. The first hot lot of GT300s have 104 die candidates per wafer, with four wafers in the pod Nvidia got back a week and a half ago. There is another pod of four due back any day now, and that's it for the hot lots. How many worked out of the (4 x 104) 416 candidates? Try 7. Yes, Northwood was hopelessly optimistic — Nvidia got only 7 chips back. Let me repeat that, out of 416 tries, it got 7 'good' chips back from the fab. Oh how it must yearn for the low estimate of 20%, talk about botched execution. To save you from having to find a calculator, that is (7 / 416 = .01682), rounded up, 1.7% yield."
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Announcements

+ - Wolfram|Alpha To Be Launched Tonight (May 15)->

Submitted by RoFLKOPTr
RoFLKOPTr (1294290) writes "The much-awaited Wolfram|Alpha that was scheduled to launch on Monday has been moved forward and is now going to be launching tonight at 7:00PM CT (0000Z), beginning with a live webcast featuring Wolfram and some of his crew. Hopefully they have accurately planned for the huge rush of traffic they are likely to get."
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Portables (Apple)

+ - Apple Accused of Stifling Speech About the iPod->

Submitted by RoFLKOPTr
RoFLKOPTr (1294290) writes "In November of 2008, OdioWorks, the host of BluWiki and the iPodHash Project were hit by a takedown notice for discussing the cracking of the iTunesDB algorithm. A few days later, BluWiki was contacted by the Electronic Frontier Foundation about being represented in a legal battle for said takedown notice under the notion that the takedown notice was a violation of the First Amendment.

Now, to OdioWorks' rescue Monday were two San Francisco-based law firms, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Keker & Van Nest.

The lawsuit (.pdf) against Apple claims no law was broken by BluWiki because the writers of the wiki threads "had apparently not yet succeeded in their reverse engineering efforts and were simply discussing Apple's code obfuscation techniques," says Fred von Lohmann, an EFF attorney."

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I bet the human brain is a kludge. -- Marvin Minsky

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