Gaming and VR focus at Computex

With the global gaming market expected to touch US$128.5 billion in 2020, this year’s Computex will have gaming and virtual reality (VR) as a focus area, alongside artificial intelligence (AI), 5G, blockchain, Internet of Things, and innovations and startups.

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NVIDIA DGX-2: Insanely powerful

NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang (above) dubbed it the “world’s biggest GPU”. And he certainly wasn’t kidding as the NVIDIA DGX-2 is a massive 350-pounder that delivers an amazing two petaflops of computational power.

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Broadcom’s takeover bid of Qualcomm takes broadside hit

Singapore-based Broadcom has been dealt a major blow in its takeover bid of Qualcomm. US president Donald Trump has issued an order against the US$117 billion deal.

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Global IT spending to rise to US$3.7t in 2018

Global IT spending is expected to grow to US$3.7 trillion in 2018, an increase of 4.5 percent from 2017, according to Gartner.

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Spectre of a Meltdown

Maybe James Bond can help to deal with the security issues.

In a week where the world’s eyes were supposed to be focusing on the exciting new gadgets and technologies coming out at CES 2018, it was news from past technologies that had the world reeling.

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NVIDIA Titan V: Not for gamers

It’s easy to understand why the media and gamers were getting all excited following NVIDIA’s announcement of the Titan V. After all, it’s dubbed as “the world’s most powerful GPU for the PC, driven by the world’s most advanced GPU architecture, NVIDIA Volta”.

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NVIDIA Tesla V100 gains widespread acceptance

NVIDIA’s Volta architecture is leaving quite an impression. According to a NVIDIA press release issued at SC17, the Volta-based NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPU is available through every major computer maker and chosen by every major cloud to deliver artificial intelligence (AI) and high performance computing.

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GeForce GTX 1070 Ti arrives on November 2

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 TiNo matter how hard NVIDIA tries to keep things quiet, it always seems that some sites out there know something about unannounced products. Case in point is the much touted GeForce GTX 1070 Ti.

Media frenzy was already high in the weeks running up to the announcement, thanks to drips of information that were permeating the Web.

NVIDIA finally announced it hours ago in a blog post. Truth be told, it sounds like a good product with its award-winning Pascal GPU architecture, 2,432 cores and 8GB of memory running at 8Gbps for a total bandwidth of 256 GB/s. And it performs twice as fast as the immensely popular GeForce GTX 970.

 

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Singapore’s AI agenda gets double boost!

NVIDIA Fellow Dr David Kirk
NVIDIA Fellow Dr David Kirk delivers the keynote address at the NVIDIA AI Conference.

Singapore’s aim to be an artificial intelligence (AI) hub has been boosted with two initiatives — the setting up of a shared AI platform for researchers and the awarding of scholarships to develop AI talents.

At the NVIDIA AI Conference in Singapore yesterday, NVIDIA and Singapore’s National Supercomputing Centre (NSCC) agreed to establish a platform to bolster AI capabilities among its academic, research and industry stakeholders and in support of AI Singapore (AISG), a national programme set up in May to drive AI adoption, research and innovation in Singapore.

Called AI.Platform@NSCC, it will provide AI training, technical expertise and computing services to AISG, which brings together all Singapore-based research and tertiary institutions, including the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore University of Design and Technology (SUTD), Singapore Management University (SMU), as well as research institutions in the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR).

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All 3b Yahoo accounts breached in 2013

This. Is. Serious. Yahoo has revealed that ALL of its three billion user accounts were affected by the August 2013 data theft.

The number is three times the one billion accounts that Yahoo said were impacted last year. The data stolen included names, birth dates, phone numbers, passwords, and the security questions and backup email addresses used to reset lost passwords.

In a press statement, Yahoo pointed out that it has taken “action to protect all accounts, including directly notifying impacted users identified at the time, requiring password changes and invalidating unencrypted security questions and answers so that they could not be used to access an account.” The company also notified users via a notice on its website.

Changing role of CIO

The role of the CIO is changing, according to a Gartner survey of 3,160 CIO respondents in 98 countries.

The findings revealed that the CIO role is transitioning from delivery executive to business executive, from controlling cost and engineering processes, to driving revenue and exploiting data.

Ninety-five percent of CIOs expect their jobs to change or be remixed due to digitalisation. While world-class IT delivery management is a given, it will take up less and less of the CIO’s time.

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China’s tech giants bet on NVIDIA Volta

China’s top technology companies are betting big on the NVIDIA Volta platform.

Alibaba Cloud, Baidu, and Tencent are incorporating NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPU accelerators into their data centres and cloud-service infrastructures to accelerate AI for a broad range of enterprise and consumer applications.

At the heart of the new Volta-based systems is the NVIDIA V100 data centre GPU. Built with 21 billion transistors, it provides a 5x improvement over the preceding NVIDIA Pascal architecture P100 GPU accelerators, while delivering the equivalent performance of 100 CPUs for deep learning. This performance surpasses by 4x the improvements that Moore’s law would have predicted over the same period of time.

Inspur, Lenovo and Huawei are using the NVIDIA HGX reference architecture to offer Volta-based accelerated systems for hyperscale data centres. Using HGX as a starter “recipe,” original equipment manufacturer and original design manufacturer partners can work with NVIDIA to more quickly design and bring to market a wide range of qualified GPU-accelerated AI systems for hyperscale data centres to meet the industry’s growing demand for AI cloud computing.

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More NVIDIA GPU offerings on Google Cloud Platform

Google has expanded its NVIDIA GPU offerings on the Google Cloud Platform. These include:

  1. Performance boost with the public launch of NVIDIA P100 GPUs in beta
  2. NVIDIA Tesla K80 GPUs available on Google Compute Engine
  3. Introduction of sustained use discounts on both the Tesla K80 and P100 GPUs

According to a Google Cloud Platform blog, cloud GPUs can accelerate  workloads including machine learning training and inference, geophysical data processing, simulation, seismic analysis, molecular modeling, genomics and many more high performance compute use cases.

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HPE to cut 5,000 jobs

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) plans to shed 10 percent of  its workforce, accounting for at least 5,000 workers globally, according to a Bloomberg report.

Expected to start before the year end, the move is in line with reducing expenses in the midst of global competition.

 

HPE Chief Executive Officer Meg Whitman has been pushing to delayer the organisation in a bid to become more efficient.

Dell and Asus posts solid growth in monitor market in Q2

Dell and Asus are the leading lights in an overall weak PC monitor market in Q2.

Total shipment was 28.5 million units in Q2, a 6.4 percent decline from the corresponding period last year, according to IDC. Some of the market softness can be attributed to a strong Q2 last year.

IDC currently forecasts 117 million PC monitor units will be shipped for the full year of 2017 and expects to see a 2.2 percent decline year-over-year in worldwide shipment to 27.8 million units in Q2 2018. By 2020, worldwide shipment is expected to be less than 112 million units as the adoption of mobile devices at lower price points is expected to continue.

NVIDIA to hold first AI-focused conference in Singapore in October

With artificial intelligence (AI) being a hot topic this year, NVIDIA is organising its first AI-focused regional conference in Singapore on October 23 and 24.

The event will be held in two parts with the first day focusing on Deep Learning Institute (DLI) workshop where participants will received hands-on training on deep learningl and the second day filled with keynote addresses, panel discussion and three tracks. It is targeted at data scientists and senior decision makers in the field of AI in both public and private sectors.

“Singapore is aiming to be the world’s first smart nation and AI is playing a critical role. NVIDIA is well positioned to help drive the government’s Smart Nation initiative with the development of solutions based on AI. Our GPUs are making headlines across the world by enabling many breakthroughs in various industries using deep learning,” said Raymond Teh, Vice President of APAC sales and marketing at NVIDIA.

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Australia PC market bucks global trend by inching up 3.3%

Consumer and enterprise PC purchases are driving growth in the Australia PC market, which includes desktop, notebook and workstation.

The consumer segment grew 8.6 percent year over year (YoY) in Q2, according to IDC.

“The retail channel was negatively impacted by Dick Smith’s exit last year. This year however, promotional events such as Modern PC program run by Harvey Norman spiked growth in the consumer space. AMD’s new Ryzen series launch and EOFY sales further fuelled growth in this segment,” said Sagar Raghavendra, Client Devices Analyst of IDC Australia.

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March ending for Google Drive

Google Drive on the PC and Mac will cease to exist in its current form from March 2018. According to a blog post by Google, the app will no longer be supported starting on December 11, 2017, and it will shut down completely on March 12, 2018.

“We encourage you to use Drive File Stream. As an alternative to or in addition to installing Drive File Stream, you can upgrade to the new version of Drive for Mac/PC, called Backup and Sync,” wrote the blog.

Drive File Stream is for business users while Backup and Sync, which combines Google Drive and Google Photos functionalities, is for consumers. However, the Google Drive service will still work on the web and smartphone apps.

Sun slips into history

Some may have already forgotten about Sun Microsystems, the company that introduced the SPARC processor and developed Java. The once mighty workstation maker was bought by Oracle in 2010.

It seems that the last of Sun will be disappearing as Oracle is laying off staff in its hardware division, which contained remnants of the former Sun team.

For those who have followed the rise of Sun in the 1980s, it’s an eventuality that is really sad. Based in Santa Clara, the company once competed against the likes of IBM and HP for a slice of the workstation market. However, by the time it was acquired by Oracle, Sun had outsourced its manufacturing operations.

AMD Vega price hike irks reviewers

When AMD launched the RX Vega 64 and 56 last month, reviewers were impressed by its price-performance and thought that the new GPUs could give NVIDIA a run for its money.

However, it has turned out that the prices were promotional rates with the actual prices around US$100 more. This has drawn the ire of several influential reviewers who felt misled and are considering updating their reviews.

This looks like a PR disaster for a company trying to rise again to compete in the high-end GPU market.

 

Worldwide semiconductor market to grow 10.2% in 2017

Global semiconductor market is expected to grow 10.2 percent in 2017, to US$77.7 billion, according to Gartner.

This growth rate is up from the previous quarter’s forecast of 1.4 percent, due to continued aggressive investment in memory and leading-edge logic which is driving spending in wafer-level equipment.

“Spending momentum is more concentrated in 2017 mainly due to strong manufacturing demand in memory and leading-edge logic. The NAND flash shortage was more pronounced in the first quarter of 2017 than the previous forecast, leading to over 20 percent growth of etch and chemical vapor deposition (CVD) segments in 2017 with a strong capacity ramp-up for 3D NAND,” said Takashi Ogawa, Research Vice President of Gartner.

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More graphics power for creative professionals

One of the flaws of notebooks is the lack of upgrading capabilities. This is especially so for creative professionals whose work are increasingly more demanding and complex, requiring more graphics processing power.

NVIDIA has solved that with the newly-announced external GPU (eGPU) chassis that lets professionals easily add a NVIDIA Titan X or NVIDIA Quadro graphics card.

“While more computer power than ever is needed for VR, photoreal rendering and AI workflows, mobile systems are getting thinner and lighter, with limited performance and memory. Our eGPUs can now solve this problem, enabling creatives to plug into our most capable GPUs so they can do their best work on the most graphically demanding applications,” said Bob Pette, Vice President, Professional Visualisation, NVIDIA.