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Comment Re:Great news (Score 1) 324

Not so fast..
Silicon has a refractive index of about 4.0. So, light travels upto 4 times slower than in vaccum.
Also, the delays are more than just the distance within chips since sensing and detection delays are typically larger.

Currently, the main advantage of optical interconnects is that the capacitive charging and discharging delays within the chip transistors and interconnects comprise a major portion of the total delay. This problem is exacerbated with smaller geometries such as 32nm and 28nm.
Optical interconnects do not suffer from such problems.

Comment Re:Itanium would have worked-AMD screwed it for in (Score 5, Interesting) 275

The biggest advantage of AMD x64 over Itanium is the ability to run x86 32-bit code natively without any performance penalty.
The comparison is not just about better technology. Think of the trillions of lines of x86 32-bit code that has been written.
Would you render all this code unusable just because you want to move to a better architecture.

Comment Re:Freeze the CPU (Score 3, Insightful) 260

Carefully repowering SRAM can maintain the contents. I have seen SRAM come up with essentially 99% of the contents still intact after the SRAM had been powered down for over a week. I guess that once powered up, the SRAM has a preference to come back the way it was before powerdown. Or perhaps the slight residual voltage kept the SRAM contents intact. (Even though it was probably less than one tenth of a volt.) SRAM draws very little current when the voltages are reduced. Thus the power rails can maintain some small voltage for a very long time. .

I would really like to see any citation to support your point. If true, this is really an interesting concept.

Comment Its not only the new case !!! (Score 2, Informative) 243

The article title and summary could have been worded better.

In addition to the new case (which by any means can be considered a minor change), there is speculation that the new Macs will be using nVidia MCP79 chipsets.

Along with the comparatively better graphics performance, this will also add SLI support to the Macbooks.

AVG Fakes User Agent, Floods the Internet 928

Slimy anti-virus provider AVG is spamming the internet with deceptive traffic pretending to be Internet Explorer. Essentially, users of the software automatically pre-crawl search results, which is bad, but they do so with an intentionally generic user agent. This is flooding websites with meaningless traffic (on Slashdot, we're seeing them as like 6% of our page traffic now). Best of all, they change their UA to avoid being filtered by websites who are seeing massive increases in bandwidth from worthless robots.

Brain Interface Lets Monkeys Control Prosthetic Limbs 208

himicos was one of many readers to point out one recent success of scientists working to develop working brain-machine interfaces, writing "A team at the university of Pittsburgh has finally advanced a 2002 technology enough for use in prosthetic limbs, the targeted application all along. Training computer models to the firing patterns of the neurons in the parts of the brain that control motion, they are able to project the intentions of a monkey to a robotic arm, which follows the will of the animal. The sad thing about the articles is that the beauty of the mathematics used to create and train the models is totally ignored." Reader phpmysqldev adds a link to coverage at the BBC, and writes "This of course brings significant hope to amputees and other other people with physical disabilities." (Note that this research has been going on for quite some time.)

Submission + - SPAM: USAF Mining Data Use Patterns to Find Thoughtcrime

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: If shutting down access to blogs isn't enough to create resentment, the Air Force is "developing data mining technology meant to root out disaffected insiders based on their e-mail activity — or lack thereof." With "Probabilistic Latent Semantic Indexing" a graph is constructed of social network interactions from an organization's e-mail traffic "If a worker suddenly stops socializing online, abruptly shifts alliances within the organization, or starts developing an unhealthy interest in "sensitive topics," the system detects it and alerts investigators."
The Courts

Submission + - SPAM: Taskforce seizes $76 Million in counterfeit Cisco

coondoggie writes: "An international law enforcement task force today said they have made over 400 seizures of counterfeit Cisco network hardware being trafficked between the US, Canada and China with an estimated retail value of more than $76 million.The initiative targeted the illegal importation and sale of counterfeit network hardware, in particular network routers, switches, network cards and modules manufactured by Cisco. By intercepting the counterfeit hardware at ports of entry and dismantling illegal supply chains in the US, the operation has achieved significant successes in protecting the public from the risk of network infrastructure failures associated with these counterfeits, officials said in a release. [spam URL stripped]"
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Tata Set to Launch World's Cheapest Car

theodp writes: "Ready for one-automobile-per-child (OAPC)? India's giant Tata Group is on the verge of launching the world's cheapest car. The People's Car, slated to be unveiled January 10th at a New Delhi auto show, will carry a sticker price of 100,000 rupees ($2,500), which some analysts say could revolutionize automobile costs worldwide. The cheap car, a pet project of Cornell-trained architect Ratan Tata that he helped design, is aimed at improving driving safety by getting India's masses off their motorbikes and into cars."

Submission + - Via Launches x86 1 Watt Processor (

learningtree writes: Via has launched an ultra-low power edition of its x86 Eden processor that consumes just 1 Watt at full power. The processor, clocked at 500 MHz is targeted at industrial, embedded and ultra-low power applications. But should we expect some ultra-portable notebooks to feature this processor, with an extremely good battery life ? Seems doubtful ...

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