Monday, September 30, 2013

#CHIPS: "Carbon Nanotube Computer Integrated With CMOS"

The world's first carbon nanotube computer has been integrated onto a CMOS chip by researchers at Stanford University, heralding a new era of carbon-based circuitry on standard silicon wafers. Carbon nanotube transistors are higher speed and lower power than silicon transistors, but until now have been impossible to insert into the CMOS design flow. Now Stanford University researchers claim to have surmounted these problems, enabling carbon nanotube transistors to be integrated into standard cells on CMOS wafers: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Carbon nanotube computers on silicon wafer aim for smaller, more energy-efficient CMOS processors.
Further Reading

Friday, September 27, 2013

#DISPLAYS: "Stretchable, Bendable, Foldable Displays Beacon"

Displays today are most flat, but the future will hold stretchable, bendable, foldable displays that can unfurl like a sail, according to researchers at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) who recently showed two stretchable organic light emitting diode (OLED) prototypes--a lighting panel and a small display: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Researcher wearing purple gloves demonstrates how an OLED lighting panel can be bent while still working undamaged.
Further Reading

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

#MEMS: "Top 12 MEMS Chips Pioneering New Markets"

First MEMS revolutionized the smartphone by allowing it to sense orientation--to switch the screen from portrait to landscape--then to sense motion for gaming and gesture recognition, and next to sense heading for digital compasses and to enhance location-based services even when GPS signals are unavailable like indoors. Now MEMS is poised to pioneer new frontiers in electronics, from automotive to environmental to medical. Here the 12 most significant MEMS chips announced in the past year are recounted, including predictions of how they will change the world of electronics in 2014 and beyond: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Sand 9's chip can be over-molded into the customer's own chip package, along with the chip for which it provides the
timing signals.
Further Reading

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

#ALGORITHMS: "Hacking Medical Implants Foiled"

When vice president Dick Cheney got a pacemaker, the Secret Service is said to have taken extra precautions to prevent hackers from reprogramming it. Now researchers at Rice University wants to provide even better safeguards for the rest of us. A new algorithm that uses the patients own heartbeat as a random password generator is said to prevent hackers from gaining wireless access to pacemakers, insulin pumps,defibrillators, neural implants, and drug delivery systems: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Rice University professor Farinaz Koushanfar (left) and her student Masoud Rostami (right) invented security technique for implantable medical devices that prevents wireless attacks.
Further Reading

Friday, September 20, 2013

#MATERIALS: "Superconducting Quantum Computer Beckons"

A new superconducting material holds promise for enabling quantum computers capable of solving the Big Data problem. According to scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories (Berkeley Labs) a new material called a topological insulator has a top layer that has been found to be superconducting. The hope is that it also harbors Majorana zero modes, which could hold nonvolatile q-bits that do not need the elaborate error correction as with conventional materials for quantum computers: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Bismuth selenide cuprate (Bi2212) heterostructure showed high-temperature superconducting gap on the surface of a bismuth selenide topological insulator.
Further Reading

Thursday, September 19, 2013

#MATERIALS: "Spintronics for Silicon Approaching"

Spintronic enables atom-scale nonvolatile circuitry that remembers its state even when turned off. Until now spintronic materials have not been silicon compatible. But now a new class of dilute magnetic semiconductors could fit the bill, eanbling ultra-dense ulra-low-low power circuitry not otherwise possible today: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Cross-section spintronic material, and epitaxial strontium tin oxide (Sr3SnO) interfaces to cubic yttria-stabilized zirconia (c-YSZ) atop a silicon substrate.
Further Reading

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

#CHIPS: "IBM, Amazon Choose New Intel Xeon for Next-Gen Datacenters"

IBM and Amazon have chosen to put "Intel Inside" their next-generation datacenters using the just released Xeon E5-2600 v2 processor for their servers. IBM's NeXtScale System, for instance, packs 84 dual-socket 12-core Xeon E5-2600 v2 processors–for 2,016 cores total--in a single hyerscale server: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Further Reading

#DISPLAYS: "Flexible and Curved Displays--$27 Billion Market"

After years of research and false starts, flexible and curved displays are starting to take off, according to Touch Display Research, which predicts a $27 billion market by 2023: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Sony promises this curved television will be on store shelves in time for Christmas.

Flexible and curved display market is only $388 million today but will grow to $27 billion by 2023, according to Touch Display Research.
Further Reading

Monday, September 16, 2013

#CHIPS: "Intel Boosts vPro Virtualization, Security at IDF"

Virtualization allows information technology (IT) to remotely manage entire fleets of computers, allowing the to remote management of software updates and secure connectivity. Intel is the only processor maker that enforces virtualization with on-chip hardware--called vPro--that insures users can get the applications they need and the security they require without having make a physical trip to IT. At the Intel Developers Forum 2013, Intel updated its vProp technology, boosting its performance with 4th generation Core technology as well as extending its reach from laptops and desktop PCs to tablets, 2-in-1s, Ultrabooks and all-in-ones: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Intel's 4th generation Core procesors with vPro were described in his keynote at Intel Developer Forum 2013 by Kirk Skaugen, senior vice president and general manager of the PC Client Group.
Further Reading

Friday, September 13, 2013

#MEMS: "STMicrosystems Shaping the Future of MEMS"

"Shaping the Future of MEMS and Sensors", hosted by STMicroelectronics, is the latest micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) conference, where a wide variety of representatives from the MEMS ecosystem presented their views on where MEMS is headed in the consumer electronics, healthcare and wellness markets: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Further Reading

#CHIPS: "Intel Redefining Hyperscale Cloud Datacenters"

Intel's Atom C2000 processor are enbaling low-cost, light-workload "micro-servers" specialized for entry-level networking and “cold” storage using optical-interconnected racks and a software-defined infrastructure (SDI): R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Intel is redefining the hyperscale datacenters of the future with the processors, systems and optically interconnected racks for a software defined infrastructure.
Further Reading

Thursday, September 12, 2013

#MEMS: "iPhone 5-Like Motion Processor for Android/Windows8"

At STMicroelectronics' "Shaping the Future of MEMS and Sensors" conference this week PNI Sensor Corp.(Santa Rosa, Calif.) demonstrated its new Sentral Sensor Fusion Hub for the rest of the world. Similar to Apple's recently announced M7 motion coprocessor chip for the new iPhone 5s, PNI's Sentral will work with any manufacturers sensors and operating system: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

PNI Sensor's Sentral motion processor for any OS was demonstrated the same day Apple unveiled its own M7 motion processor for the iPhone 5s. (Source: PNI
Further Reading

#CHIPS: Overclocking Spotlighted at Intel Developer Forum

Overclocking--the process of temporarily pushing your CPU past it maximum sustainable clock speed--was featured at this week’s Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco. There ASUS introduced its X79-Deluxe motherboard built specifically for the latest Intel Core i7 processors: R. Colin Johnson

Asus designed its X79-Deluxe motherboard specifically for over clocking.
Further Reading

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

#MATERIALS: "Quantum MIIM Diodes Beat Silicon"

Operating at terahertz frequencies is much higher than silicon devices can achieve today, but metal-insulator-metal (MIM) diodes can achieve teraherz frequencies while consuming less power and producing less heat. Unfortnatley, those promising technologies always seem just out of reach. Now Oregon State University (OSU) researchers claim to have invigorated the technology by adding a second insulator layer to produce an MIIM device that aims to solve the problems with MIM devices and come closer to taking the technology mainstream: R. Colin Johnsn @NextGenLog

MIIM devices have four layers, (left to right) amorphous zirconium, hafnium oxide, aluminum oxide and aluminum, shown here in a transmission electron microscope (TEM) image.
(Source: Oregon State University)
Further Reading

Monday, September 09, 2013

#CHIPS: "Intel’s Next-Gen RAID Puts Big Data on the Cloud"

Redundant arrays of independent disks (RAID) keeps systems up and running by switching over to backup storage or even entire servers, boosting Big Data, cloud computing, realtime streaming and even parallel software frameworks like Apache Hadoop--an advantage Intel addresses with three new high-performance RAID storage solutions: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Intel recently boosted its support for redundant arrays of independent disks (RAID).
Further Reading

#ALGORITHMS: "Intel’s Parallel Programming Suite Updated"

The comprehensive parallels software suite--Parallel Studio XE and Cluster Studio XE-has been updated to new Haswell-EP microarchitecture–the low-power 22-nanometer successor to Ivy Bridge as well as Haswell’s successor–Intel’s 14-nanometer Broadwell processors, due out next year. Besides performance improvements and support for Intel's new 512-bit advanced vector extensions (AVX-512), the new parallel performance wite supports a whole array new software standards including, OpenMP 4.0, C++11, Fortran 2003 and 2008: R. Colin Johnson

Performance with Intel latest MPI library offers up to 6.5-times better performance.

\Intel parallel programming suites offer improved data mining for performance tuning using using Intel VTune Amplifier XE.
Further Reading

Thursday, September 05, 2013

#CHIPS: "Graphene Enables Non-Boolean Logic"

The whole world of semiconductor researchers are trying to force graphene into performing well in traditional structures like transistors, but researchers at the University of California in Riverside say go-with-the-flow, and are creating novel non-Boolean devices that come naturally to graphene: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Novel graphene devices here performs non-Boolean logic--scale bar is one micron.
Further Reading

#SENSORS: "E-Nose Sensitivity Boosted by Nanotubes"

Electronic noses can sniff out almost any chemical, but can be temperamental since detected molecules must be precisely positioned on the business end of the sensor. Now researchers have created bundles of nanotubes with space between them where molecules can be surrounded by the sensor, making the up to 100,000 times more sensitive--almost enough to detect a single molecule of a hazardous substance: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Bundles of carbon nanotubes with curved tips improve e-nose's sensitivity by letting through Raman scattered light to boost sensitivity of chemical detector.
SOURCE: H.G. Park / ETH Zurich)
Further Reading

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

#MEMS: "Sand 9 Downsizes Cell Phones"

If you crack the case on any cell phone--smart or dumb--you'll find that the biggest, clunkiest components inside are the crystal oscillator "cans." Now Sand 9 has eliminated the need for those bulky components with a sub-millimeter MEMS substitute, enabling a new era of thinner, lighter, better performing cell phones that drop fewer calls: R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Sand 9's tiny package provides the same the timing signals as quartz but in a sub-millimeter size.

Sand 9's use of a piezo-electric resonator (center) works 100 times better than traditional MEMS.
Further Reading