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Thursday Afternoon (10 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 21-June-2012  15:06:59 (GMT +10) - by Agg

The ABS have released some new census data. More info here. The census is conducted every five years to gather information on populations for electoral purposes and guide government spending on new infrastructure, community services and facilities such as schools, hospitals and roads. This is the 16th census taken in Australia over the past 100 years with about 9.8 million households surveyed on August 9 last year. Discussion here.

An Australian court has allowed a $2.25m fine for Apple, in the case brought against them by the ACCC. Justice Mordecai Bromberg dismissed the three-month case from a Melbourne court room on Thursday morning after hearing last week from Apple and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, which argued advertising the iPad as "Wi-Fi + 4G" was misleading to Australian consumers. More here.

It's been a supercomputery week, with a new record-holder for fastest cluster at the US Department of Energy, thanks FOTW. More here and here. The newly installed system trumped Japan's K Computer made by Fujitsu which fell to second place. It is the first time the US can claim pole position since it was beaten by China two years ago. Sequoia will be used to carry out simulations to help extend the life of aging nuclear weapons, avoiding the need for real-world underground tests.

Meanwhile NASA have upgraded one of theirs. An expansion completed earlier this month has increased Pleiades' sustained performance rate by 14 percent, to 1.24 petaflops (quadrillion floating-point operations per second). To put this enormous number into perspective, if everyone in the world did one calculation per second for eight hours a day, it would take about 370 days to complete what this supercomputer can calculate in one minute. More info here.

At the other end of the scale, Phoronix now have a solar-powered 96-core cluster. Over the weekend, a 96-core ARM cluster succeeded this build. While packing nearly 100 cores and running Ubuntu Linux, the power consumption was just a bit more than 200 Watts. This array of nearly 100 processor cores was even powered up by a solar panel.

Martin noticed that NVIDIA have responded to Linus Torvalds and his recent much-publicised comments. Supporting Linux is important to NVIDIA, and we understand that there are people who are as passionate about Linux as an open source platform as we are passionate about delivering an awesome GPU experience.

From SiliconAngel: It appears official builds of ICS pushed out by Samsung via the Kies manager suite to SGS2 handsets have caused instability including wifi failure, graphic quality issues, battery life shortening, overall UI slowdown and application freezes. There's a thread on the Android support forums with a list of hundreds of SGS2 owners plagued by these issues, with as yet no response from Samsung. Personally I'm shocked at the thought that a manufacturer could do this to end users, with seemingly no recourse for reparation. If my phone had been affected in this way it would severely affect my work, so I'm extremely relieved that I did my research before agreeing to update my phone.

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All original content copyright James Rolfe. All rights reserved. No reproduction allowed without written permission.