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Last night at their press conference in Las Vegas, NVIDIA finally officially announced “the worst kept secret” – their TEGRA 4 chip.

tegra4-processor

Tegra 4 offers exceptional graphics processing, with lightning-fast web browsing, stunning visuals and new camera capabilities through computational photography.

Previously codenamed “Wayne,” Tegra 4 features 72 custom NVIDIA GeForce GPU cores – or six times the GPU horsepower of Tegra 3 – which deliver more realistic gaming experiences and higher resolution displays. It includes the first quad-core application of ARM’s most advanced CPU core, the Cortex-A15, which delivers 2.6x faster web browsing and breakthrough performance for apps.

Computational Photography Capability

Among the Tegra 4 processor’s breakthroughs is its Computational Photography Architecture, which automatically delivers high dynamic range (HDR) photos and video by fusing together the processing power of the GPU, CPU and the camera’s image-signal processor.

Its HDR capability captures images, including those taken with a flash, the way they are seen by the human eye – with detail in both bright and dark areas.

Unprecedented Power Efficiency

Designed for maximum energy efficiency, Tegra 4 includes a second-generation battery saver core for low power during standard use, and PRISM 2 Display technology to reduce backlight power while delivering superior visuals.

Tegra 4 consumes up to 45 percent less power than its predecessor, Tegra 3, in common use cases. And it enables up to 14 hours of HD video playback on phones.

Tegra 4 Key Features

· GeForce GPU with 72 custom cores

· Quad-core ARM Cortex-A15 CPU, plus a 2nd Generation Battery Saver Core

· Computational Photography Architecture

· LTE capability with optional Icera i500 chipset

· 4K ultra-high-def video support

Having seen some live demos of TEGRA 4 running last night I have to say I am impressed.

You can learn more about TEGRA 4 here

Those few very lucky people who got their Raspberry Pi’s can now download updated Debian, Arch Linux ARM images to play with.

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This is what was posted:

Liam has just uploaded new versions of the Debian and Arch Linux ARM distributions to our mirror system. Head on over to the downloads page. The Debian image contains the following updates to the prior 13-04-2012 release:

  • Dom’s overscan adjustments
  • Dom’s ALSA driver
  • re-enable 1600×1200 output (regression in 13-04-2012 release)
  • boot file tidyup – and remove test cmdline file
  • vcgencmd provides a version number
  • fixes for EDID parsing
  • drive DMT modes in DVI modes by default, even if HDMI is reported as supported
  • some initial packages that might make setting up Wi-Fi possible
  • includes the non-free software source (nothing from it though) – useful for Wi-Fi firmware
  • the latest snapshot of the Qt5 code
  • a small package that will allow Raspberry Pi to be used as for Qt5 development out of the box
  • Raspberry Pi wallpaper on white background
  • LXDE theme for user “pi” is now “mist” (performance improvement)
  • a new Python IDE “spe” and related tools
    • winpdb – python debugger
    • wxglade – python dialogue designer
  • python-pygame
  • the “scratch” educational programming tool and required squeak-vm
  • lxtask – runs a task manager when CTRL-ALT-DEL pressed in LXDE
  • release identification in /etc/issue-rpi and /boot/issue.txt
  • ssh disabled by default – boot commands taken from /boot/boot.rc if present – candidate to enable ssh included
  • timezone set to Europe/London
  • tidied hidden files
  • package cache is clean

The alpha-quality ALSA driver included in this release is disabled by default. Type

modprobe snd_bcm2835

to enable it.

[button link="http://connecteddigitalworld.com/2012/04/01/a-once-in-a-lifetime-day-at-arm-celebrating-the-beeb30/" color="silver"]Check out our Raspberry Pi coverage from the Beeb@30 event[/button]

Have you ordered one? Let us know if you get yours before us, or even after us.

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Microsoft have announced the versions of Windows 8, and instead of being a lot of different SKU’s, there are basically 3. Oh, and if you wan’t Media Center then it’s an economical “media pack” add-on to Windows 8 Pro!

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These are the specifics about the versions which Microsoft posted earlier:

Windows 8 has the flexibility you need – whether you’re on an x86/64 or a WOA PC. You can use a touch screen or a keyboard and mouse – and switch anytime. It’s beautiful, fast, and fluid design is perfect for a wide range of hardware. And you’ll love browsing through the Windows Store and downloading all the apps you want. And those apps can work together too so you can share photos, maps, contacts, links and whatever else you want faster and easier. All editions of Windows 8 offer a no-compromise experience.

First, Windows 8 is the official product name for the next x86/64 editions of Windows.

For PCs and tablets powered by x86 processors (both 32 and 64 bit), we will have two editions: Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro. For many consumers, Windows 8 will be the right choice. It will include all the features above plus an updated Windows Explorer, Task Manager, better multi-monitor support and the ability to switch languages on the fly (more details on this feature can be found in this blog post),which was previously only available in Enterprise/Ultimate editions of Windows. For China and a small set of select emerging markets, we will offer a local language-only edition of Windows 8.

Windows 8 Pro is designed to help tech enthusiasts and business/technical professionals obtain a broader set of Windows 8 technologies. It includes all the features in Windows 8 plus features for encryption, virtualization, PC management and domain connectivity. Windows Media Center will be available as an economical “media pack” add-on to Windows 8 Pro. If you are an enthusiast or you want to use your PC in a business environment, you will want Windows 8 Pro.

Windows RT is the newest member of the Windows family – also known as Windows on ARM or WOA, as we’ve referred to it previously. This single edition will only be available pre-installed on PCs and tablets powered by ARM processors and will help enable new thin and lightweight form factors with impressive battery life. Windows RT will include touch-optimized desktop versions of the new Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. For new apps, the focus for Windows RT is development on the new Windows runtime, or WinRT, which we unveiled in September and forms the foundation of a new generation of cloud-enabled, touch-enabled, web-connected apps of all kinds. For more details on WOA, we suggest reading this blog post which shares more detail on how we have been building Windows 8 to run on the ARM architecture.

So what do you think?

Personally I think calling Windows RT something that doesn’t have 8 in the title is very odd, and will confuse people!

Also, I am not sure yet what I think about Media Center being “an economical media pack”. Does this mean they will actually do some more development on it? Will it come with all the codecs I will ever need? Or is this just a way of Microsoft to make some extra money? And what do they mean by “economical”?

Tell us what you think!

[button link="http://windowsteamblog.com/windows/b/bloggingwindows/archive/2012/04/16/announcing-the-windows-8-editions.aspx" style="info"]Learn more about the different versions from here[/button]

The Acorn BBC Micro turned 30 and to celebrate it the Centre for Computing History organised a once in a lifetime event on Sunday 25th March 2012 that included the original people behind the BBC Micro.

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We were honoured to be invited and so got up very early on a Sunday morning and drove to Cambridge and the headquarters of ARM.

Getting In

In the window was an Acorn Computer sign – I had a feeling it was going to be a great day – and I wasn’t wrong!

IMG_0002

There was even a really cool way to sign in when you got there!

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A Look Around the Displays

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After walking through the entrance doors there were a number of displays showing retro computing hardware, including various BBC Micro’s and Electrons.

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In the next in their Windows 8 series, Microsoft talk about Building Windows for the ARM processor architecture.

arm

One of the notable aspects of Microsoft Windows has been the flexibility the architecture has shown through shifts in technology and expansion of customer usage over time. What started out as an operating system for one person working solo with productivity software is now the foundation of a wide array of hardware and software technologies, a spectrum of connected Windows products, and an incredibly flexible approach to computing. With Windows 8, we have reimagined Windows from the chipset to the experience—and bringing this reimagined Windows to the ARM® processor architecture is a significant part of this innovation. Expanding the view of the PC to cover a much wider range of form factors and designs than some think of today is an important part of these efforts. Windows on ARM enables creativity in PC design that, in combination with newly architected features of the Windows OS, will bring to customers new, no-compromise PCs.

This post is about the technical foundation of what we call, for the purposes of this post, Windows on ARM, or WOA. WOA is a new member of the Windows family, much like Windows Server, Windows Embedded, or Windows Phone. As with those products, WOA builds on the foundation of Windows, has a very high degree of commonality and very significant shared code with Windows 8, and will be developed for, sold, and supported as part of the largest computing ecosystem in the world. Today we’ll focus on the development of WOA and introduce some of the features, along with how customers will experience it. As with x86/64 Windows 8, there are still announcements to be made relative to the business and marketing aspects of the product(s). Today’s blog post is about making WOA, not marketing or selling it.

To read the rest of the article, click here.

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Today saw Synology release another update for it’s DiskStation Manager (DSM) software, taking it up to version 3.2.-1955.

DSM ARM

Here is press release:

Milton Keynes – November 30, 2011—Synology® today, introduced Synology ARM® Performance Acceleration Technology in its DSM 3.2-1955 update to deliver a substantial performance boost to its NAS servers.

“Synology strives to optimise the performance of its NAS servers, and today adds to its efforts with the ARM Performance Acceleration Technology,” said Evan Tu, software development group manager of Synology Inc. “The Technology enables a DiskStation to surpass its limit, achieving an up to 18.8% gain in performance while ensuring system reliability and stability at the same time,” added Tu. With the ARM Performance Acceleration Technology, for instance, the DS212+ writes faster at 65.69 MB/sec. For more information, please visit http://www.synology.com/releaseNote/DSM3.2_v1955_ARM.php.

The DSM 3.2-1955 update also improves data transfer stability of USB 3.0 storage devices and the compatibility of iSCSI targets with ESXi servers. Users are thus empowered to manage more data in less time and achieve greater productivity.

Availability The DSM 3.2-1955 update applies to the following models: DS712+, DS212, DS212+, DS212j, RS212, RS812, DS3611xs, RS3411xs, RS3411RPxs, DS2411+, RS2211+, RS2211RP+, DS1511+, RS411, DS411, DS411+II, DS411+, DS411j, DS411slim, DS211+, DS211, DS211j, DS111, DS1010+, RS810+, RS810RP+, DS410, DS410j, DS710+, DS210+, DS210j, DS110+, DS110j, DS509+, RS409+, RS409RP+, RS409, DS409+, DS409, DS209+II, DS209+, DS209, DS209j, DS109+, DS109, DS109j, DS409slim, DS508, DS408, RS408, RS408-RP, DS108j

It is available for free download at http://www.synology.com/support/download.php and in the DSM Update of DiskStation Manager.

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