Articles about Silicon

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Samsung to acquire Joyent

Container pioneer and Sun alumni lair Joyent has been bought by Samsung. Since the buyer is a world-spanning industrial powerhouse, the acquisition is too small for Samsung to have to talk about the price. Joyent's probably most famous as the first corporate steward of node.js and one of the language's largest users. It's …

FFS, Twitter. It's not that hard

Howto With the news that Twitter is looking for yet another head of product – the fifth in under three years – it's clear the social media company is still at a loss over what to do next with its service. So here is a simple guide to turn things around and go from the company that everyone shakes their heads at to a bastion of the …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 Jun 2016
Tom Perkins

Silicon Valley granddad and HP boss-killer Tom Perkins dies aged 84

Obit Tom Perkins, seen by many as one of the grandfathers of Silicon Valley, has died at the age of 84 after a prolonged illness. Perkins was born in White Plains, New York, in 1932 and showed an early interest in technology, earning a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from MIT in 1953 and an MBA from Harvard four …
Iain Thomson, 10 Jun 2016
Ireland and Great Britain map, image via Shutterstock

Cork data centre will offer super-speedy US to Europe data times

An Irish property company is expected to secure planning permission for a 25,550 square meter facility on the outskirts of Cork City that will offer much reduced data latency times between the US and Europe. JCD Group’s rapid movement with plans for the centre on the site of a disused electronics factory in the city is in …
Joe Fay, 10 Jun 2016
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Don’t let the Barmy Brexiteers wreck #digital #europe

¡Bong! I have always considered myself an internationalist. Expensive Swiss private school. Los Angeles rehab clinic. East London loft workspace and incubator. My assistant มาลัย (which means "Garland of Flowers" in Thai) is from somewhere in Indo-China. My refreshments are Colombian. I am a borderless child of John Perry Barlow, of …
Steve Bong, 10 Jun 2016

RIP ROP: Intel's cunning plot to kill stack-hopping exploits at CPU level

Intel is pushing a neat technique that could block malware infections on computers at the processor level. That's the 40,000ft view of the new safety mechanism, the details of which were published on Thursday. What's really going on is this: Intel's so-called Control-flow Enforcement Technology (CET) [PDF] attempts to thwart …
Chris Williams, 10 Jun 2016
Terminator

Robot lung probe wins licence from US authorities

Startup Auris Surgical Robots has formally joined the robotic surgery market, securing a United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) license. Don't worry, you're not going to see The Terminator looming over you as the anaesthetic takes hold: the device, from Auris Surgical Robots, is a bronchoscope. Auris doesn't have …
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Why everyone* hates Salesforce's Marc Benioff

Opinion Technology has been replacing men with machines for over 200 years. It’s a good thing, except for the men and women whose jobs get replaced. We laugh at the Luddites who sought to destroy power looms and frames in the 1810s. We thrill to Mary Shelley’s story from that same decade, of science as a malevolent force creating …
Knupath processor product pic

Startup Knupath offers world a new CPU architecture

A company led by a former NASA boss wants to take tricky and compute-intensive algorithms off general-purpose silicon and has just popped out of stealth mode to show off its first efforts. The de-cloaking, which came after an uncharacteristically long period of ten years in “stealth mode”, revealed to the world a digital …
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Twitter ousts top exec. Again

Twitter is looking for its fifth head of product in three years. The social media upstart has reportedly demoted Jeff Seibert, who only took over the role in September. The San Francisco-based biz does not have a replacement yet. Seibert was promoted to the position after previous product head, Kevin Weil, joined a number of …
Kieren McCarthy, 07 Jun 2016

Space exploration: Are Musk and Bezos about to eclipse Gagarin and Armstrong?

Once upon a time exploring space required a mix of the “right stuff” and some serious aeronautical chops. Nowadays you’re as likely to need an out of this world ego and background in Silicon Valley financing. At least that’s one take on the modern era of space exploration - and you can explore the subject in depth and enjoy a …
Joe Fay, 07 Jun 2016

eBay boss joins Thiel critics

The CEO of eBay, Devin Wenig, has become the latest Silicon Valley exec to take issue with VC Peter Thiel's secret lawsuit funding. Speaking at the CodeCon conference on Thursday, Wenig said: "I side with the free media and the free press," when asked about Thiel's decision to fund and direct the case brought by Hulk Hogan …
Kieren McCarthy, 03 Jun 2016

Western Digital to axe 507 California staffers

Western Digital is planning to lay off 507 workers, according to paperwork submitted to California's department of employment. Under the US state's Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) system, employers must give a 60-day heads-up to affected staff plus state and local representatives prior to a plant closing …
Chris Mellor, 02 Jun 2016
Mickey Mouse watch. Pic: Joe Haupt

Smartwatches: I hate to say ‘I told you so’. But I told you so.

Comment If you work in software, I’ll bet you worked on a project like this. It’s where dozens, or even hundreds of people are involved in the spec process, and what tumbles out is a monster that nobody ever wanted. The IA-432 processor, Intel’s first pre-Itanic disaster, was a classic example. It was a tabula rasa, and every …
Andrew Orlowski, 02 Jun 2016

Tech titans demand free speech law to head off President Trump

Donald Trump has already started bringing America together by forging an unlikely alliance between Republicans in Congress and Silicon Valley. Both groups are working on pushing through a bill aimed at protecting free speech online before the end of the Obama Administration, because neither believe a President Trump would …
Kieren McCarthy, 01 Jun 2016
cloud

Cumulus Linux 3.0 NOS now in the wild

Cumulus Linux is touting a bunch of heavyweights as supporting the latest iteration of its white-box Linux. On board for the launch of the Cumulus Linux 3.0 network operating system are Dell, EdgeCore Networks, Mellanox, Penguin Computing, and Supermicro. For Cumulus, one of the biggest aspects of the launch is that version 3 …
Qualcomm Snapdragon 820

Qualcomm wheels out new set of Snapdragon Wear chips

Qualcomm has announced it will be launching a new series of Snapdragon Wear chips aimed at wearable devices. As wearable technology expands, the new chips will power devices that are aimed at specific audiences, such as kids’ watches or watches for the elderly, fitness trackers, smart headsets, and wearable accessories. The …
Katyanna Quach, 31 May 2016
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Microsoft wants to fling money at startups. Don't all rush at once

Microsoft is stretching out its foot to dip a tentative toe into the waters of early stage investment, under a revamp of its Microsoft Ventures programme. Announcing the plans to plough more money into startups, Nagraj Kashyap, veep at Microsoft Ventures, said: "In Microsoft’s history of engaging with and supporting startups, …
Kat Hall, 31 May 2016
Diane M. Bryant, executive vice president and general manager of Intel's Data Center Group

Intel's new plan: A circle that starts in your hand and ends in the cloud

As predicted by The Register, Intel has created an x86-powered reference platform for home gateways that makes the box you use for broadband services an Atom-powered target for virtual machines delivered by carriers. Announced today at Computex in Taipei, the new AnyWAN GRX750 is a system-on-a-chip that can serve as the basis …
Simon Sharwood, 31 May 2016

Snapchat valued at $18bn

Messaging app Snapchat has been valued at an extraordinary $18bn in the latest round of funding, revealed in an SEC filing. The company raised $1.8bn over the course of a year, with most of it coming in the last few months. The company is still privately held, but unlike other Silicon Valley "unicorns," venture capitalists are …
Kieren McCarthy, 27 May 2016

We see what you're up to, Intel, with your eye-o-tee vision

Intel reduced to a component supplier to auto-makers? Don't rule it out, readers, or rate it a cut-rate fate for Chipzilla, because the company has just made a bet in just that field. The bet is the acquisition of a company called Itseez Inc, “an expert in Computer Vision (CV) algorithms and implementations for embedded and …
Simon Sharwood, 27 May 2016

Twilio (ask your dev) to IPO

One of Silicon Valley's so-called unicorns is going public. Comms company Twilio has filed IPO paperwork with US financial watchdog the SEC and is looking for $100m. It hasn't released the number of shares it intends to sell however, making it impossible to see how much the San Francisco-based upstart it seeking to value …
Kieren McCarthy, 26 May 2016

Hulk Hogan's sex tape, a Silicon Valley billionaire, and a $10m revenge plot to destroy Gawker

Analysis It's long been feared that satire may be dead. But the proof seems to have arrived in reports that Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel is secretly funding a Hulk Hogan sex-tape legal case against media outlet Gawker as part of a 10-year revenge fantasy for outing him as gay. The Hogan case was already a weird one: he was …
Kieren McCarthy, 25 May 2016

Former Sun CEO Scott McNealy has data on 1/14th of humanity

Former Sun CEO Scott McNealy has data on one in 14 humans, wants to get that down to one in seven, but at heart what he really wants is the thin client that Oracle killed when it acquired Sun. McNealy gathered the data in his role as co-founder and executive chairman of Wayin, a software-as-a-service outfit that aims to give …
Simon Sharwood, 25 May 2016
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Facebook adds new names to Telecom Infra Project

Facebook's Telecom Infra Project (TIP) has signed up a bunch of carriers and vendors. The TIP aims to spread the white-box with software-defined control plane approach used by Facebook's Open Compute Project to telco networks. When it launched back in February, TIP had members and some reference designs from Facebook, Intel …

Ego and CEO are 66 per cent the same

RECAP While Game of Thrones obsessives reveled in that series' fifth episode The Door (hold the door; poor guy), the true nerds were instead staring at a chair. Not just any chair – the chair. The chair of Pied Piper's CEO and in it sat ... no one. Because Jack Barker had been jettisoned and now the boys at Silicon Valley were ready …
Kieren McCarthy, 23 May 2016

Goracle latest: Page testifies, jury goes home

Google CEO Larry Page took the stand Thursday in the latest edition of the Chocolate Factory's long-running legal case against Oracle. The Google cofounder was questioned by attorneys from both sides, reiterating his company's argument that the Java APIs developed by Sun and later acquired by Oracle were open tools that Google …
Shaun Nichols, 20 May 2016

Theranos bins two years of test results

The controversial blood-testing company Theranos has voided two years of results and issued tens of thousands of corrected reports, further undermining its credibility and raising serious questions over its future. The discarded results were run both on traditional testing machines and on Theranos' "revolutionary" Edison …
Kieren McCarthy, 19 May 2016
Microsoft Clippy

You wanted innovation? We gave you Clippy the Paperclip in your IM client

Comment Look no further for proof that Silicon Valley is now running on its own exhaust fumes than the latest hype: The War of the Clippys. A decade after Microsoft banished its helpful cartoon “Assistant” Clippy from Microsoft Office, Clippys are popping up everywhere, like a plague of rodents. Don’t laugh: Clippy is now a “platform …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 May 2016
google's custom Tensor Processing Unit

CONFIRMED: Google bakes custom data centre chips

Google's long-rumoured efforts to build its own silicon have come to fruition. The Alphabet subsidiary today revealed it has baked a custom ASIC it calls a “Tensor Processing Unit” (TPU) and has been using them for a year for the machine learning applications that fuel many of its services. “TPU is tailored to machine …
Simon Sharwood, 18 May 2016

SEC warns cybersecurity is biggest threat to financial system

The chair of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Mary Jo White, has warned that the biggest risk the financial system faces is cybersecurity. Speaking at the Financial Regulation Summit in Washington DC, White warned the industry that their policies and procedures were not up to scratch and without them they faced …
Kieren McCarthy, 18 May 2016
Dr Keevers with the prism solar cell

New solar cell breaks efficiency records, turns 34% of light into 'leccy

University of New South Wales boffins have laid hands on another record, with a solar cell demonstrating 34.5 per cent conversion efficiency. The work was carried out by Dr Mark Keevers and Professor Martin Green, who heads up the university's Centre for Advanced Photonics. It's the kind of result that would get Olympic …

When the reach-around goes wrong. Or is that right?

Silicon Valley, HBO's satire on the eponymous tech haven, is at its best when it takes the brilliance and idealism of engineers and contorts them to fit the barmy business end of the industry. And so it was with the latest episode. As predicted, the show rebounded from a drab third episode to dive straight back into the …
Kieren McCarthy, 16 May 2016
LInux nutella

Linus Torvalds releases Linux 4.6

Linus Torvalds has loosed version 4.6 of the Linux kernel on the waiting world. “It's just as well I didn't cut the rc cycle short, since the last week ended up getting a few more fixes than expected,” wrote the Linux overlord. “Since rc7, there's been small noise all over, with driver fixes being the bulk of it, but there is …
Simon Sharwood, 16 May 2016
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Is uBeam the new Theranos?

A former VP of engineering at a startup that promises fast, wireless charging of electronic devices has claimed that the technology doesn't work and its CEO is misleading people. The engineer in question, Paul Reynolds, posted his claims - as well as a number of other critical pieces on uBeam's CEO Meredith Perry - on a …
Kieren McCarthy, 13 May 2016
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US work visas for international tech talent? 'If Donald Trump is elected all bets are off'

Apart from marrying an American, the best known route for foreign techies wanting to (legally) share their expertise for a fee in the US is a work visa. But this route is overcrowded, increasingly expensive and, should Donald Trump become America’s 45th president, it'll likely slam shut for many hoping to work in Silicon …
SA Mathieson, 13 May 2016
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The fork? Node.js: Code showdown re-opens Open Source wounds

Open Source Insider Open source software rarely receives the kind of attention that the press lavishes on the latest hot new thing blessed by Silicon Valley venture capitalists. Yet these projects are the foundations of the web world. Without open source there would be no Slack, no Medium, no Github. Nor would there be Google, Facebook, or much …

Kobayashi Maru gets real: VR and AR in meatspace today

Three years ago few people other than hardcore gamers and those working in specialist industrial fields were still talking about VR. It was a gimmicky technology cursed by the “P” word (“potential”) and huge, ungainly headsets that generated a flurry of interest in the late 1990s that quickly evaporated. Today, it’s big news …
Alistair Dabbs, 13 May 2016

How to make a fortune in space? Start with one here on Earth…

We all know the ambition of Silicon Valley’s finest know no bounds - not even gravity. So it’s no surprise that some of the world’s finest business minds are training their brain power and considerable fortunes far beyond our own, rather limited world. That’s why on June 22, International Space University’s Prof Chris Welch …
Joe Fay, 12 May 2016
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Unicorn adopts rainbow as logo

LOGOWATCH Instagram's changed its logo. And given us a spectacular example of the astounding language Silicon Valley manges to emit when talking about itself. “The Instagram community has evolved over the past five years from a place to share filtered photos to so much more,” says Instagram's post explaining its new icon. That missive …
Simon Sharwood, 12 May 2016

Australian Greens don't believe Silicon Valley can save the world

If there's one thing that Australia's two main political parties agree on, it's that replicating Silicon Valley on local shores is a Very Good Thing. The governing Liberal/National coalition and opposition Labor party are both advocating more spending on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) teaching and back …
Simon Sharwood, 12 May 2016
Northern Ireland nature scene. Photo by Shutterstock.com

Ireland handed another $100m by Silicon Valley for startups' handout

The mad money bags at Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) have announced they will be throwing an additional $100m at Ireland's Strategic Investment Fund, doubling the bank's involvement in the nation's tech sector. SVB pledged its first $100m, to be paid over a five year period, back in 2012. While not notably different from most …
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'Dirty Page Logs' coming to future vSphere release

VMware will add support for Intel's Page Modification Logging (PML, aka Dirty Page Logs) in a future version of vSphere, according to the product's chief platform architect Richard Brunner. Speaking to The Register, Brunner said VMware “worked closely with Intel on the definition of PML back in 2012.” The problem both were …
Simon Sharwood, 11 May 2016
Marc Benioff of Salesforce. Pic: Techcrunch

Marc Benioff apologizes as Salesforce NA14 instance goes TITSUP

Workers across the US have been tearing their hair out after the Salesforce NA14 instance suffered a Total Inability To Support Usual Performance around 11 hours ago. Salesforce outage map That's a lot of peeved Californians. Source: DownDetector. Outages have been reported across the US, with the epicenter in the company' …
Iain Thomson, 11 May 2016

Lending Club CEO booted out for dodgy deals

The CEO of online money merchant Lending Club, Renaud Laplanche, has been fired, raising more questions over tech startups and how far from business norms - and the law - they have strayed in an effort to make money. Laplanche resigned this week after an internal investigation revealed the company - a lauded startup "unicorn" …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 May 2016
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HP starts startup funder

HP Inc has created a new eight-person business unit called HP Tech Ventures that will provide seed and Series A funding to startups. The new unit will be based in the heart of Silicon Valley in Palo Alto - where HP was founded back in 1939 - and will focus on four areas: 3D printing, augmented and virtual reality, smart robots …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 May 2016

Valley VC Peter Thiel becomes an official Trump delegate

Paypal co-founder, Facebook investor, dope-loving Silicon Valley VC Peter Thiel is an official Trump delegate for California. The bombastic billionaire (Trump that is) released the delegate list [PDF] for California this week and alongside politicians like House majority leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and Representative Darrell …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 May 2016
Rani Borkar

Chipzilla veteran joins IBM's OpenPOWER

IBM has tapped former Intel product development veteran Rani Borkar as veep for development of its OpenPOWER project. Borkar left Chipzilla at the end of last year, after 27 years with the company. At Intel, she specialised in chips for PCs and data centres – for example, speaking for Intel when it first started pitching its …

Falling flat: Silicon Valley satire is a no show

Recap Trouble lies ahead for the plucky nerds of HBO's Silicon Valley and not only within the show itself. Last season, it took until the eighth episode of the 10-slot run for the show to fall flat on its face (a trip from which it swiftly recovered). This time around it has happened - literally - in episode three. Last time, we …
Kieren McCarthy, 09 May 2016

Amazon nabs AI boffin from Xerox PARC

Amazon has hired Ashwin Ram, an ex-Xerox PARC employee and a researcher in cognitive science, in an effort to step up its AI R&D department. Although Amazon have not officially released a statement, Ram announced on Twitter that he was “excited to join Amazon.” A spokesperson from Amazon has confirmed his appointment but …
Katyanna Quach, 06 May 2016