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 Alexander Wolfe
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News & Commentary Posts: 624
Alexander Wolfe is a former editor for InformationWeek.
Articles by Alexander Wolfe
posted in May 2009

AMD Poised To Launch 6-Core Istanbul

5/30/2009
AMD will take Opteron to the next level on June 1, when it formally unveils its 6-core Istanbul processor. The exciting angle for users of high-powered servers (and also viewed from a data-center consolidation perspective) is that Istanbul in 4-socket servers will deliver 24 physical cores. (And you can add virtualization on top of that.) When you add the AMD launch to Intel news last week about its 8-core Nehalem-EX, I'd say we have a have a processing-power revolution on our hands comparable t

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Cool-er Kindle Competitor Stokes Ebook Mania

5/28/2009
I'm not a big fan of David Pogue (this video is one reason, though mainly it's because he has a larger audience than I), but I took notice when he reviewed the latest Kindle alternative. What does it all mean? Ebooks are real, and they'll eventually replace print, but for now I'm ticked there are no good portable PDF readers for smartphones.

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Intel Nehalem-EX Launch Raises Multicore Ante

5/27/2009
Forget four cores -- even though it's the sweet spot of the market. I write that only half in jest, because with announcements from Intel (an 8-core Nehalem) and AMD (6-core Istanbul), the lid has been ripped off the supposed upper limit on cores and threads. Consider that a Nehalem-EX with 8 physical cores and 2 threads per core for 16 total logical threads. In a four-socket server configuration, this can deliver 64 logical cores. [Update: This number has been corrected to 64 logical cor

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Podcast: Sybase Sees Mobile Enterprise Tornado

5/17/2009
We're in the midst of a mobile enterprise tornado, Terry Stepien, president of Sybase iAnywhere, told me when we did our podcast the other day. (Actually, it's a perfect storm.) Used to be, companies would dole out smartphones to anointed employees. Now, workers are storming the IT gates, demanding corporate e-mail connectivity for their iPhones. And software vendors are partnering up with mobility shops to roll out smartphone clients for their apps. Click on to hear our podcast.

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Steal This E-Book

5/15/2009
Sick of reading about MP3 and movie piracy, and how it's killed the music business and is destroying Hollywood, too? Then let's take a break and talk about e-book piracy. The usual suspect -- Cory Doctorow -- posits that the author's real enemy is obscurity, not piracy. Wrong. It's a different "p" word: Poverty.

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Colgan Air Crew Was Crash Waiting To Happen

5/13/2009
If an engineering education teaches one anything, it's that proper process begets beneficial results. The reverse case is scarily evident in the transcripts of the Colgan Air disaster, where a discombobulated crew was a disaster, waiting to happen, which did.

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Video: SAP's McDermott On Mobility, SaaS, & Business Intelligence

5/10/2009
When I sat down with Bill McDermott, president of SAP's Global Field Operations, all I wanted to talk about was whether software-as-a-service is upending traditional self-hosted software. So it almost went by me when he mentioned that SAP would soon have some Business Intelligence news. We also discussed mobile apps, plus Bill had some tough words for competitor Oracle. Click on to access the video and podcast.

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Intel Ads Don't Clarify Core Brand (But New Stickers Do)

5/6/2009
The big branding news from Intel is not its upcoming megabucks "Sponsors of Tomorrow" ad campaign -- another sure-to-fail attempt to paint geeks as cool. (I'm referring to the "TV spot portraying the Intel scientist who helped invent the USB drive as a rock star." David Byrne, maybe?) What is welcome news, though, is the quieter "rebadging" effort, which seeks to clarify those hapless stickers identifying the processor inside your PC or laptop.

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Amazon Awarded Kindle Patent

5/5/2009
In an unusual coincidence, one day before Amazon.com is scheduled to unveil a new, widescreen Kindle aimed at newspaper readers, the e-commerce giant has been awarded what appears to be its first United States patent related to the device. The new patent, D591,741, is a design patent which protects the look and feel of the Kindle shell, not for fundamental technologies.

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Best Buy Boosts Vinyl LPs

5/1/2009
Here's a story that'll warm the hearts of aging audiophiles (me) and anyone nostalgic for the heyday of electromechanical storage: Best Buy is considering dedicating space to selling vinyl records, after a sales test proved there's life in the old platters yet. Can vacuum tubes be far behind?

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