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Tuesday Afternoon (8 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 21-June-2016  16:23:21 (GMT +10) - by Agg

There's a new world's fastest supercomputer, and once again it's in China. Notably though, it uses Chinese chip technology, not American. The previous fastest supercomputer, China's Tianhe-2, was built using US-made Intel processors. There were plans to upgrade the Tianhe-2's performance last year, but in April 2015 the US government placed an export ban on all high-performance computing chips to China. The Department of Commerce said that exporting such technology was "acting contrary" to American national security or foreign interests, and suggested that an earlier Chinese supercomputer — the Tianhe-1A — had been "used in nuclear explosive activities."

Meanwhile UC Davis have developed a 1000-core processor. Thanks to its ability to shut down individual cores, the chip can handle 115 billion instructions per second while using 0.7W of power. That's enough that you could run it off of a lone AA battery, folks. You aren't about to see mass production. The university had IBM manufacture the chip on a relatively ancient 32-nanometer process when the industry's newest processors are usually made using a smaller, more efficient 14nm technique.

This article reads like something of a conspiracy theory but sounds like it could be a big deal. Recent Intel x86 processors implement a secret, powerful control mechanism that runs on a separate chip that no one is allowed to audit or examine. When these are eventually compromised, they'll expose all affected systems to nearly unkillable, undetectable rootkit attacks. I've made it my mission to open up this system and make free, open replacements, before it's too late.

Techspot show us some weird keyboard layouts. There’s no place like home row, am I right? We have all undoubtedly come a long way from typing our very first letters to the point it becomes second nature, but it’s probably safe to say that many of us don’t know much about what lies beyond the standard QWERTY keyboard. Well, there’s so much more. Let’s take a look at some popular and regional keyboard layouts.

SkyMaster noticed that Estonia are soon to get Europe's first 10Gbps residential network. Nokia and Estonia-based cable operator Starman have announced that they will deploy the first nationwide 10-gigabit residential network in Europe. The new Ethernet Passive Optical Network (10G EPON) – built by Nokia – is planned to enable Starman to “cost-effectively” deliver new ultra-broadband services to residential customers living in Estonia, Nokia said in a statement.

Meanwhile, in Australia, Delimiter are calling for a Royal Commission into the NBN, thanks SiliconAngel. The following is an open letter to Australia’s politicians demanding a Royal Commission be held into the politically motivated destruction of the NBN project. If you agree: Sign this petition on Change.org, note your support in the comments below this article, and forward this letter to your political representatives.

FunkyKit have an interview with Roland Lim of Intel. We managed to interview and have a conversation with Roland Lim, the Regional Communications Manager, Intel Asia Pacific & Japan. We talk about the recent launch of Intel’s Broadwell-E processor, the Intel Developer Forum – IDF, and the Intel Extreme Masters – Esports.

Some Computex stragglers: Gigabyte AORUS overview from TechARP, while FunkyKit cover the HWBOT World Tour and the Mod in Taiwan competition. Tech Report have also posted their full coverage. Now that we've had some time to shake off the jet lag and rub the afterimages of miles and miles of RGB LED glare from our eyes, we've sifted through our notes and the thousands of pictures we took while we were on the show floor to offer up a small slice of what it's like to walk among the acres of hardware on display from all over the world.

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