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January 28, 2010

找到这篇了,连GPU也是ARM的IP.

January 27, 2010

上周末去看望多年不见的导师,在导师家吃brunch。席间话题就聊到了最近几年计算机的发展,导师虽然不是专攻互联网这块的,但是计算机科学里面,很多东西都是相通的。其实科学里面的很多分支也是相通的,导师当年那个著名的算法,就是把经济学的模型引入计算机科学的一个例子。

我们先是说到Kindle,amazon给系里的新一届研究生,都送了kindle(我读书的时候,只有微软送软件,实在是杯具),然后让学生们反馈意见。反馈的结果很好玩,除了一般说的,kindle上面看教科书很好(美国的教科书又厚又贵),有人抱怨,说kindle上面看书,不能给书做标记,比如用荧光笔标出关键句子,当然kindle的一大好处,是可以直接搜索关键词,而不必翻到书的最后去找索引。给网页做高亮标记的事情,在互联网泡沫的时候也有公司做过,后来用处不大就消失了,但是这个想法一直流传了下来。

后来话题转到了长尾上面,说起netflix搞的那个推荐引擎的比赛,把用户对电影的评论数据公布出来让大家用。虽然数据里面关于用户的隐私部分都已经被抹去,但是还是有研究人员利用这些数据,加上网络上面其他的公开数据,找出了某些评论的作者姓名。其中一个同性恋母亲(这两个词放在一起有点拗口),只写了8部电影的影评,就被发现了。为此还有一桩官司。

说起这个,我们都感叹每个人是如此的不同。如果给了足够多的选择,我们会分布到各个坐标,连在一起,就是一条长长的尾巴。

苹果推出ipad,这个产品本身的特色,貌似不多,倒是里面放了一个苹果自己的芯片A4很惹眼。10小时的电池时间,1GHz的主频,还有图形处理器和内存管理单元,这个芯片很强悍。

按照目前出来的一些数据,这个芯片是苹果08年收购的PA Semi设计的。P(alo)A(lto) Semi的创始人是当年DEC的Alpha 21064和StrongARM的设计师Daniel W. Dobberpuhl,就算在今天,也是相当强悍的两款芯片。公司里面有参与过Itanium, Opteron 和 UltraSPARC这三款强悍芯片的工程师,所以出来这么省电的高速处理器也不奇怪。

从指令集看,PA Semi曾经设计过基于POWER架构的PWRficient,而从目前的新闻看,这个A4应该也不是ARM架构。加上PWRficient是属于AIM(Apple, IBM, Motorola)联盟的,苹果在里面有自己的份额,所以A4基本上就是PWRficient架构了。如果PA Semi能以150人的团队,在不到两年的时间里面重新弄出一款和他们以前完全不一样架构的CPU,并且让Steve Jobs用在ipad里面,那才是奇迹呢。

根据wikipedia的数据,PWRficient是基于PA6T的64位架构,2GHz的最大功耗是7瓦,那么1GHz的A4如果真的是PWRficient,里面的CPU只有3.5瓦的功耗,加上图形,内存还有其他外设的控制器,这个System On Chip的功耗应该能控制在5瓦上下。这样我们就可以估算一下ipad的电池是不是很强悍了。

更好玩的是PA6T的架构里面有对虚拟机的支持,难道ipad上面是用虚拟机跑的iphone操作系统?还是只有iphone的app是在ARM的虚拟机里跑的?这个虚拟机的想象空间太大了,比如在这个上面跑个Android如何?

新闻来源

  1. the 2009-2010 RAV4    (这个翻译成啥?)
  2. the 2009-2010 Corolla (花冠)
  3. the 2007-2010 Camry   (佳美)
  4. the 2009-2010 Matrix   (这个是佳美底盘的三厢车)
  5. the 2005-2010 Avalon  (亚洲龙)
  6. the 2010 Highlander    (爬不动?)
  7. the 2007-2010 Tundra  (貌似叫冻原)
  8. the 2008-2010 Sequoia (居然叫红杉?)

不知道为什么lexus没有停售,这个当时是出事的一款车型,因为不断的自己加速,最后出事了。

另外还有2006佳美在加州车库里面,半夜自燃的事情,也不知道后来怎么处理了。

January 24, 2010

很有趣的是,去年就有同事和我说:I do not like Google, it is turning itself into another Microsoft!

我得承认,这个同事说的有道理,如今的google,已经不是当年那个忽然想起了让世界上所有的网页作者来帮他们给网页排名的公司了,也不再是那个拿自己的logo来搞怪的公司了。现在的google,是一个上市公司,是一个在所有的热门领域都插一脚,插不进就嚷嚷说:我们准备插一脚的公司,是一个天天花钱雇人宣传价值观的公司。

别误会,google做这些事情,根本无可厚非,就连它整天说的不作恶,虽然我不相信,但是这也是这家公司自己的事情,一个上市公司去拓展市场,去给用户宣讲,去给工程师们一个信念,免得他们有自己的信念,这些都是一个上市公司应该做的。

前几天传出google创始人开始降低自己的投票权的新闻,我解读为公司股东希望有更稳健的管理团队来带领公司前进,有人认为是google的股价到顶,创始人开始套现。不论怎样,这家曾经迅速成长的公司,已经开始稳健的发展。我相信,google还会继续给业界带来新的软件和服务,就像IBM,Intel和微软上市以后一样。

我只是觉得,有点没意思。

January 23, 2010

我还以为是真事儿呢,都准备好跟上潮流创业了,结果又说是假新闻。

害得我赶了几天的程序,都白干了。

January 22, 2010

消息来源

最终结果是他们的投票权会低于50%。

看来这次goog退出中国的事件,暴露了创始人和股东之间的冲突,Eric应该是胜利者。

上学的时候老师经常教育我们,在大是大非面前,要有英雄那样的牺牲精神,勇于牺牲自己的生命云云。开始还觉得老师说的真有道理,直到某天忽然明白,命只有一条,而且是爹妈给的,等白天再看见老师在讲台上唾沫星子乱飞的说要勇于牺牲,心里就有了一个问题:您丫怎么不去牺牲呢?

从此以后颠覆了很多以前的认识,比如老师说的都是对的,印在纸上的都是对的等等。这个习惯延续到现在,在看了西西河陈经写的《都等着中国买单》,就很自然的知道,世界上面其实也没有那么多高尚的人,道德的高度和鼻子的高度没有相关关系。不过这次,就没有小时候老师形象的倒塌,那么天翻地覆的感觉了。

不过这个世界上面,还是有睁着眼睛说瞎话,然后还说自己很道德的人-反正一个瞎话是说,两个瞎话也是说。比如这次goog出中国记,就有人非要扯着百度往道德高峰去进发。要我说,百度其实本来也没打算在道德这个高度去跟goog竞争,何必扯着人家往那里走呢?

January 19, 2010

应该是高层止损的操作。目的是化整为零,以手机为载体进入中国。

谷歌这个名字在中国,估计很快要被遗忘了。

January 18, 2010

嗯,在硅谷的童话里面,一般不是以“很久很久以前,有一个王国,国王有一个漂亮的女儿”开头的,而是这么开头的:

在并不久远的过去,有一个车库,里面有两个年轻人…

记得我还在读书的时候,就自己装了一个让计算机和汽车的引擎控制器通信的电路。那个时候我和老婆还住在公寓里面,车就停在外面的露天停车场。每次我给电路的芯片改过程序以后,都要冲到楼下去测试,然后再冲到楼上去改bug。那个时候我多么希望,能有一个车库,把所有的器材都放在里面。

后来这个电路做好以后,我又给车装遥控开门和报警器。其中一个部件需要和车上的电路焊在一起。因为外面太冷,电烙铁不够热,我只好用别的办法代替。直到后来搬到加州,住的公寓有车库,我才最终把那个电路焊上。

现在有了房子,车库是自己的了,里面能做的事情就更多了,比如修车的启动电机继电器,比如修车的水泵和正时皮带,都可以把工具摊一地,几天的工程也不担心。

不过有了车库,我才发现,其实对于软件来说,在车库开发其实是扯淡。最好的软件不是在车库这样四处漏风的地方写出来的,也不是带着耳机听着摇滚在书房里面写出来的。我写过的最好的软件,特别是创意,经常是在不经意间,从脑中象闪电一样划过。至于最后写出来,不过是在书房里面的几个小时体力劳动罢了。

或许车库这个词,象征的意义更大一些。软件时代的车库,其实是在硬盘里面的那一堆虽然简陋,虽然错误百出,但是依然正常运行的代码。这个或许是摩尔定律对车库的作用。

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