- US Home Prices as Opera (Flowing Data) — reminded me of Douglas Adams’s “Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency” which has software that turns your company’s performance numbers into music. The yearly accounts of most British companies emerged sounding like the Dead March from “Saul”, but in Japan they went for it like a pack of rats. It produced lots of cheery company anthems that started well, but if you were going to criticise you’d probably say that they tended to get a bit loud and squeaky at the end.
- s3cmd Parallel — command-line tool with parallel uploads to s3. (via Nelson Minar)
- Eight of China’s Top Nine Government Officials are Scientists (Singularity Hub) — the article’s idiotic reduction to performance on standardised tests misses America’s primary strength against China, namely creative and flexible workforce. China will get there, but it’s not there yet.
PC in JS, Musical Visualization, S3 Parallel, and Tech-led Ed
Cloud Foundry is aggressively open middleware, offering a flexible way to administer applications.
By now, the popular APIs for IaaS have been satisfactorily emulated so that you can move your application fairly easily from one vendor to another. But until now, the PaaS situation was much more closed.
Part 5 of the series, "What are the chances for a free software cloud?"
The merger of free software with cloud and web services is a win-win. The transition will take a buy-in from cloud and SaaS providers, a change in the software development process, a stronger link between computational and data clouds, and new conventions to be learned by clients of the services. (Part 5 of a 5-part series.)
Part 4 of the series, "What are the chances for a free software cloud?"
Let’s put together a pitch for cloud and web service providers. We have two hurdles to leap: one persuading them how they’ll benefit by releasing the source code to their software, and one addressing their fear of releasing the source code.
Part 3 of the series, "What are the chances for a free software cloud?"
My long-term view convinces me we all will be in the cloud. The advantages are just too compelling. But what can we do to preserve freedom in the cloud? (Part 3 of a 5-part series.)
Part 2 of the series, "What are the chances for a free software cloud?"
Technology commentators are a bit trapped by the term "cloud," which
has been kicked and slapped around enough to become truly shapeless.
So in this section I'll offer a history of services that have led up
to our cloud-obsessed era, hoping to help readers distinguish the
impacts and trade-offs created by all the trends that lie in the
Part 1 of the series, "What are the chances for a free software cloud?"
A "free software cloud" may seem to be an oxymoron. But I believe that free software and remote computing were made for each other; their future lies together and the sooner they converge, the faster they will evolve and gain adoption. (Part 1 of a 5-part series.)
lectronic record systems need all kinds of underlying support. Your
patient doesn't want to hear, "You need an antibiotic right away, but
we'll order it tomorrow when our IT guy comes in to reboot the
system." Your accounts manager would be almost as upset if you told
her that billing will be delayed for the same reason.
Great Mail Feature, Speed Talks, Virtualisation History, Science Literacy
- GMail Labs: Got The Wrong Bob? — When’s the last time you got an email from a stranger asking, “Are you sure you meant to send this to me?” and promptly realized that you didn’t? Looks at the clusters of CCs you send and, if you normally send to Bob X but are trying to send it to Bob Y, asks you “did you mean Bob X?”. This might be the best thing to happen to email since webmail and full-text search–it’s ridiculous how little innovation is happening in email given how widely and heavily it is used.
- Speedgeeks LA at Shopzilla — eight talks about making websites faster. Latency Improvements for PicasaWeb – Gavin Doughtie (Google) – Great tips from a web guru about what makes PicasaWeb fast. Watch for when the slides to more talks become available.
- 10 Years of Virtual Machine Performance Semi-Demystified — fascinating history of virtualisation from someone who worked for VMware. Since 2005, VMware and Xen have gradually reduced the performance overheads of virtualization, aided by the Moore’s law doubling in transistor count, which inexorably shrinks overheads over time. AMD’s Rapid Virtualization Indexing (RVI – 2007) and Intel’s Extended Page Tables (EPT – 2009) substantially improved performance for a class of recalcitrant workloads by offloading the mapping of machine-level pages to Guest OS “physical” memory pages, from software to silicon. In the case of operations that stress the MMU—like an Apache compile with lots of short lived processes and intensive memory access—performance doubled with RVI/EPT. (Xen showed similar challenges prior to RVI/EPT on compilation benchmarks.)
- Pew Research Science Quiz — To test your knowledge of scientific concepts and recent scientific findings and events, we invite you to take this 12-question science knowledge quiz. Then see how you did in comparison with the 1,005 randomly sampled adults asked the same questions.
Bill Coleman has twice transformed our industry, and I'm excited to announce that he will keynote Velocity later this month. Bill is most famous for being the "B" in BEA and for leading the creation of Solaris while at Sun. He is now the CEO of his new startup, Cassatt, which "makes Data Centers more efficient". Bill is awesome and…