I’ve been thinking a lot lately about microprocessors, from the many-core CPUs that AMD and Intel introduced recently to the massively scalable GPGPU processing that’s taking machine learning by storm. After years of consolidation on commodity x86 CPUs, it seems that the computing paradigm is turning again to specialized offload processors. This trend towards heterogeneous computing will change the face of hardware, from mobile devices to the datacenter.
General-purpose GPU computing has been on the rise for years, from OpenCL and CUDA to machine learning and self-driving cars. But cryptocurrency mining has exploded in 2017, draining the market of AMD’s latest graphics cards as mining rigs pop up from basements to warehouses all over the world. The strength of Bitcoin in international finance suggests that Ethereum, Zcash, and others “altcoins” will find their own niches. We are seeing the emergence of a new computing category.
As I mentioned in my previous article, I decided to buy the 13″ Core i5 (base model) MacBook Pro. It meets my needs as a travel workstation, but how does it perform? I decided to benchmark it against my other Macs to see how it stands up.
The VMware ESX hardware compatibility list is awesome but it’s kind of hard to wade through. It’s super-detailed, but difficult to navigate if one is browsing for compatible hardware. Although SATA and especially PATA aren’t exactly mainstream in enterprise datacenters, they’re the most-likely storage attachment for labs and tinkerers like me.
The nVidia 8600M GT graphics chip in my late-2007 (Merom/Santa Rosa) MacBook Pro has failed. Apple has promised to repair affected machines for three years regardless of warranty status, but that doesn’t make it any easier to live with. Let’s hope everything goes smoothly and my trusty notebook is back in action quickly! I’ll be updating this post with the status of my nVidia repair adventure.
Are you the kind of person who always wants the best? Does an upgrade that costs as much as the original item sound like a good investment? Are you the owner of a 2009 Mac Mini? Then you’re in luck! Apple’s latest firmware update allows nVidia-based Mac Minis to be upgraded to 8 GB of […]
Apple’s bizarre online store reboot this morning revealed that the next point-update for Mac OS X will be in the hands of the faithful this Friday, August 28! Many speculated on the purported September availability of the operating system upgrade, but today’s information clears the air. Although Apple’s web site clearly states that Snow Leopard […]
There is a lot of FUD flowing between Apple Macintosh true believers and the rest of the PC world. This is especially true now that Macs use Intel CPUs, NVIDIA chipsets and graphics, and so much more commodity PC parts. Lots have argued that a Mac is just an expensive PC with a flashy case […]
It may seem odd to buy a computer intending to upgrade it right out of the box, but so it was with me when I snapped up a new 2009 Nvidia-powered Mac Mini. I had been waiting for Apple to update the aged Mini line, saving up my pennies, but the out-of-box specs for RAM and hard drive space were underwhelming.
After a very, very long wait, Apple has finally updated their entry-level “bridge” Mac, the Mac Mini. It’s amazing that, after 19 months without an update, Apple’s new Mini looks exactly the same as the old Mini. But what’s under the hood matters, and Apple delivered a mixed bag there. The new Mini is an excellent home server, which is how mine will be used, but some poor choices limit its abilities out of the box.