Archive for Bobland

Titan supercomputer is now world’s fastest

Cray’s Titan supercomputer has snatched the title of world’s fastest from the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Sequoia—and it’s cray fast, as you might expect.

Powered by a mixture of CPUs and GPUs, Titan is home to 18,688 nodes, each of which contains an AMD 16-core Opteron and a NVIDIA Tesla K20X GPU accelerator. All told, that’s a whopping 560,640 processors, which are capable of 17.59 quadrillion operations per second. For perspective, Sequoia snatched the top spot back in June with a mere 16.32 quadrillion.

And what the hell is all that computational crunching power used for? Well, Titan is housed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where it’s used to perform calculations for materials research, nuclear energy research, and analysis of techniques which can make combustion engines more efficient. As well as dabbling in climate modeling. No biggy, then, obviously. [Top 500 via Forbes]

Image by Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Report: Internet Explorer 10 Is The Fastest Browser On Windows, Chrome 19 Wins On Mac

According to the latest data from web application performance management firm New Relic, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 10 on Windows 8 currently has the fastest response time of any browser on Windows, leading the company – and Microsoft – to conclude that IE10 is currently the fastest browser on Windows. Looking at the 40 billion web pageviews it monitors every month, New Relic’s data shows that IE9 comes in second, followed by Firefox 15, Safari 5 and Chrome 21.

On the Mac, interestingly, an older version of Chrome (19) showed a faster average response time than any of the newer versions (New Relic’s data doesn’t include measurements from Chrome 23, though, as it was only released today).

Read More on Techcrunch>>

NYC data centers hit by Hurricane Sandy

As Hurricane Sandy delivers a glancing blow to New York City, the power company pulls the plug on parts of lower Manhattan, and some Web sites without redundant servers go down.

Power outages caused by Hurricane Sandy show why it’s good to have a duplicate Web server located somewhere far away from New York City right now.
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The local power company, Consolidated Edison shut down power to portions of lower Manhattan this evening in an effort to prevent damage to underground equipment.

That coincided with when Gawker.com and Gizmodo.com went offline. In a Twitter update at 4:21 p.m. PT, Gizmodo said: “We’ll be back soon! There was a data center battery failure after the power went down in Lower Manhattan. Generators powering up.”

Buzzfeed.com is also down, saying: “Our site is down. Problems with NY-area servers due to Sandy.” Livestream.com says it’s experiencing “a major outage.”

Windows 8 system requirements

If you want to run Windows 8 on your PC, here’s what it takes:

  • Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster with support for PAE, NX, and SSE2 (more info)
  • RAM: 1 gigabyte (GB) (32-bit) or 2 GB (64-bit)
  • Hard disk space: 16 GB (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
  • Graphics card: Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver

Additional requirements to use certain features:

  • To use touch, you need a tablet or a monitor that supports multitouch (more info)
  • To access the Windows Store and to download and run apps, you need an active Internet connection and a screen resolution of at least 1024 x 768
  • To snap apps, you need a screen resolution of at least 1366 x 768
  • Internet access (ISP fees might apply)
  • Secure boot requires firmware that supports UEFI v2.3.1 Errata B and has the Microsoft Windows Certification Authority in the UEFI signature database
  • Some games and programs might require a graphics card compatible with DirectX 10 or higher for optimal performance
  • Microsoft account required for some features
  • Watching DVDs requires separate playback software (more info)
  • Windows Media Center license sold separately (more info)
  • BitLocker To Go requires a USB flash drive (Windows 8 Pro only)
  • BitLocker requires either Trusted Platform Module (TPM) 1.2 or a USB flash drive (Windows 8 Pro only)
  • Client Hyper-V requires a 64-bit system with second level address translation (SLAT) capabilities and additional 2 GB of RAM (Windows 8 Pro only)
  • A TV tuner is required to play and record live TV in Windows Media Center (Windows 8 Pro Pack and Windows 8 Media Center Pack only)
  • Free Internet TV content varies by geography, some content might require additional fees (Windows 8 Pro Pack and Windows 8 Media Center Pack only)

To check if your PC meets these requirements, you can run the Upgrade Assistant.

EmergencyCompliment.com: a website that generates praise with the click of a button

Those suffering from the blues can now get a quick pick-me-up, thanks to EmergencyCompliment.com, a website that generates praise with the click of a button.

Visitors to the the bare-bones site are greeted by a compliment in bold white letters on a neon-colored background.

A sampling of the pseudo-kudos include: “Your cousins refer to you as ‘the cool cousin,’” “You’ve never had morning breath. I swear,” “Everyone was cool with that time you peed in the shower,” “You’re the best at making cereal” and “Your pet loves you too much to ever run away.”

Users can select two options at the bottom of the page. Click on “I still feel crappy,” and EmergencyCompliment.com generates another pat on the back. But choose “Thanks! I feel better,” and visitors are directed another site where you can print a poster that displays their compliment of choice forever.

Microsoft to make more Hardware

Microsoft’s chief boss has confirmed he plans to release more devices.

Steve Ballmer told the BBC: “Is it fair to say we’re going to do more hardware? Obviously we are… Where we see important opportunities to set a new standard, yeah we’ll dive in.”

The chief executive’s comments came ahead of a Windows 8 launch event in New York, following which Microsoft’s Surface tablet will go on sale.

News other devices are likely to follow may worry some of the firm’s partners.

Mr Ballmer caused a stir when he revealed in June that his company was making its own family of tablet computers – one offering extended battery-life powered by an Arm-based chip, the other using Intel’s technology to offer a deeper Windows experience.

Until now Microsoft had focused on software and relied on third-parties to make hardware, with a few exceptions such as its Xbox games consoles and Kinect gesture sensors.

 

Read More here >>

Why Are Mobile Ads So Cheap?

Mobile may be the future, but right now mobile ad units still command a lower price point on average than print and web advertisements.

Earlier this year, the renowned venture capitalist and former Wall Street analyst Mary Meeker gave her much-watched annual presentation on Internet trends, during which she revealed a startling statistic based on her own research: The effective cost per thousand impressions (CPM) for desktop web ads is about $3.50, while the CPM for mobile ads is just $0.75.

More recently, leading mobile ad platform Opera Software broke down the average cost for mobile ads by device, and found that even the iPhone, which has the highest average CPM for mobile ads of any smartphone, at $2.85, still falls short of that CPM for web ads on a desktop. Importantly, Opera’s mobile ad estimates likely skew higher because its business focuses on mobile display ads rather than mobile search ads, which tend to have a much lower CPM.

Print ads, by comparison, can command rates of as much as $100 per thousand impressions.

 

Read more on Mashable >>

Emoticons for Facebook comments

Facebook has implemented comments into the private messages. To use emoticons in Facebook comments you need to use shortcut codes shown in the table below to get the desired emoticon. These are the same smileys which can be used for some time in Facebook chat.

Smiley Name Shortcut
smile smile :-) :) :] =)
frown frown :-( :( :[ =(
gasp gasp :-O :O :-o :o
grin grin :-D :D =D
tongue tongue :-P :P :-p :p =P
wink wink ;-) ;)
curly lips curly lips :3
kiss kiss :-* :*
grumpy grumpy >:( >:-(
glasses glasses 8-) 8) B-) B)
sunglasses sunglasses 8-| 8| B-| B|
upset upset >:O >:-O >:o >:-o
confused confused o.O O.o
shark shark (^^^)
pacman pacman :v
squint squint -_-
angel angel O:) O:-)
devil devil 3:) 3:-)
unsure unsure :/ :-/ :\ :-\
cry cry :’(
Chris Putnam Chris Putnam :putnam:
robot robot :|]
heart heart <3
kiki kiki ^_^
42 42 :42:
penguin penguin <(“)

Top 10 Ways to Make Yourself Look (and Be) Smarter

Whether you’re trying to survive an intensive college schedule or just want to seem smarter in front of your friends, you can do a lot of things to both look and be smarter. Here are ten simple tricks for boosting your real (and perceived) brain power.

10. Read Faster and Better

Obviously, one of the best ways to boost your intelligence is to read more! You can read faster (and thus consume more knowledge) by getting your speech mechanism out of the equation. So give your mouth something to do, like eating, humming, or chewing gum to get through that stuff quickly. Then, take some time to absorb and reflect on what you read to keep it in your memory. Whether it’s War and Peace or just the Wikipedia Random button, you’ll be surprised by how much more you learn when you’re reading not just fast, but well.

9. Speak Up (and Do It With Expression)

The more you can contribute to a conversation, a meeting, or other discourse, the smarter you’ll come off. Even if it means admitting ignorance or asking questions, you’ll still look better than if you stay silent—and you might actually learn something in the process. Expressive speech is key: you can boost your credibility a lot by simply making sure you speak with an engaging tone. Change your pitch and volume as necessary, and try to minimize the number of pauses as you speak. A little confidence goes a long way. 

8. Don’t Fall Prey to BS

When someone’s trying to convince you of something, they can often resort to logical fallacies, appeals to your emotion, and other “workarounds”. Learn the most common forms of BS so you can detect them as they come up. By knowing what they are, you’ll also be able to avoid dishing out those same fallacies yourself, which can be a big hit to your credibility if someone catches you. 

7. Focus on What You Know

When engaged in a heated discussion with your friends, you’re bound to stumble upon a few holes in your knowledge. It’s okay to admit when you don’t know something, but if you’re feeling particularly self-conscious and want to keep up the appearance of intelligence, the key is emphasizing what you do know. If you’re in an argument, don’t stress disagreement so much as agreement—that way, you aren’t straying away from things you know about. You’re stressing the parts you do know while still taking part in the discussion.

6. Get Some Exercise

A healthy body means a healthy brain. So, in between all the reading and mind-expanding, make sure you’re leading a healthy physical life, too. That means eating right and getting regular exercise. A number of studies. have shown links between regular activity and intellecual capacity, productivity, and creativity. Will spending all day at the gym make you smarter? Not quite, but sitting around all day will not only kill you, but hinder your brain from being at its absolute best.

Read more on Lifehacker >>

iPhone 5 rollout draws big crowds worldwide

NEW YORK (AFP) – Apple fans queued in Asia, Europe and North America on Friday for the new iPhone 5, which appeared set to break sales records despite lukewarm reviews and complaints about its mapping system.
The crowds of eager buyers looked set to make the latest iPhone a huge commercial success for the trend-setting US tech giant. Some analysts say Apple may sell 10 million in just the first days of the launch.
“I’ve been waiting for eight days, I’m so happy right now,” said Keenen Thompson, one of the first among several hundred people outside the Apple store on New York’s Fifth Avenue.
First in line at Montreal’s Apple store was Jonathan Moreau, 28, who said he would replace his iPhone 4S “which I don’t use for work, but just for me.” The new model, he said, “is faster, with a better display, a better camera.”
At the Apple store in Bethesda, Maryland, Kirsten Mentzer, a university student who came with her sister and parents to get the new gadget, secured the first spot. “It’s fun to spend time with other Apple friends,” she said. “I’ve always been part of the Apple community. My parents raised me on an old MacBook.”
Mike Bishop of Bethesda said he was “really excited” about the new iPhone and had been waiting to replace his broken iPhone 4.
Asked if he would consider another phone, Bishop said: “Once you use an iPhone, you don’t go back to any other brand. The main thing is the refinement at every level.”
Australians were the first to get their hands on the device.

Read more >>