Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Super Computers.. What You Need To Know!!

Supercomputers at NASA Ames Research Center.

You obviously know what a computer is capable of doing by now, I don't expect you to know it inside out but at least some idea about it..! Computer is now a necessity in every home. It makes our life so simple and with the evolution of internet its now a machine that people can't live without. You basically have a home computer to play games, log into facebook and other social sites, chat with friends neglecting home work, download and watch movies and simply something to do when your plain bored.

So What is a Super Computer anyway..?!  And why were Super Computers made..?! 

Super Computers is a computing machine that has a far greater processing  power than others of its day; typically they use more than one core and are housed in large clean rooms with high air flow to permit rapid cooling of many heated systems and processors. Super computers were made for advanced calculations and forecasts ranging from research to design flaws. But many of Super computers powers are also used for climate modeling, renewable energy, materials science, fusion, combustion, nuclear  simulations  and animations.

The Top Ten Super Computing Super Powers;

1. USA
2. China
3. Germany
4. UK
5. France
6. Japan
7. Russia
8. Sweden
9. Canada
10. Switzerland

So what is the fastest Super Computer Out there..?!

The fastest Super Computer system ever made is called the "Jaguar" which belongs to the "Cray XT" system family. The system model is known as "Cray XT5-HE". Cray Jaguar XT5-HE supercomputer is built by Cray Inc. at Oak Ridge National Laboratory  in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA. The Cray XT5 Jaguar system has 224,256 Opteron processor cores, and operates with a version of Linux called Cray Linux Environment.. It has a top speed of 1.75 petaflops.One petaflop is the equivalent of 1,000 trillion calculations per second. It is used by scientists conducting research in astrophysics, climate science and nuclear energy.

Jaguar XT5 Super Computer

The Jaguar supercomputer performs 1,750 trillion calculations a second. So in other words for "1 Second" of calculations made by the Jaguar it will take your PC over 10 hours (time taken for a trans Atlantic flight). Which means for a "Day" of calculations by the Jaguar, it will take your PC over 100 YEARS..!!! Beat that.!!!

Already a new XT-6 is under development. There is a possibility that it could be in use already..!

Simple Facts;
  • No.01 use if Super computers are for research purposes.
  • Most Super computers are based on a Linux based operating system
  • US is the largest manufacturer and user of Super computers.
  • Super computers are widely used to forecast damage and evacuation plans for major natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunami's, hurricanes, or tropical storms.
Further reading: 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The King-Kong battle of File Hosting

Couple of years back and if you were searching for a stable and reliable file hosting service, the most recommended name you would get is "Rapidshare". But that was some time back, with evolving technology and ever decreasing price of hardware many hundreds of online file hosting companies have sprung up. It is now difficult to narrow down the competitors, all have advantage of their own. Ranging from prices, traffic limit, bandwidth offered, services offered and to their self gained reputation. Top five file hosting companies I use are ;- Rapidshare, Hotfile, Netload, Mediafire & Megaupload.

In the end it is wise to choose the right hosting company on the services provided to both premium and free users. And also keep in my mind about the link popularity of the hosting company as well, for example;- there are more Rapidshare & Hotfile links than that of Uploading.com or Stoorage.to so naturally a buyer would be more interested to buy a Rapidshare or Hotfile account than that of the other two. That is mostly how I choose my premium accounts. All networks offer high traffic and bandwidth to their "Premium" users. "Free" users as you would know by now have to wait for certain time before the download link appears, can't download more than one file at once and offers extremely low bandwidth for the download.

The million dollar question;- Rapidshare vs Hotfile: what is better..?! (Premium users perspective)

As I said before each hosting service has their own strengths. Rapidshare and Hotfile are both highly reputed file hosting companies, both offer high bandwidth to their premium users. But traffic limit per day in Rapidshare land is 25GB (quite a lot you would think) where as in Hotfile it is completely "Unlimited".. there's no limit to your downloading usage other than your connection speed (Awesome right.!!). Price wise Rapidshare is slightly expensive the longer your commitment are than that of Hotfile, but fully worth it. There are more links on the internet for files on Rapidshare so the extra you pay is all worth it, I certainly use my Rapidshare premium account more than the Hotfile account.

Final answer:- Rapidshare is better than Hotfile. And no doubt Hotfile is second best. That is why is I have premium accounts from both these file hosting companies..:)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Opera Mini Web Browser for the iPhone & iPod Touch

It is been seen as a major break through in Opera Mini's browser history, as it becomes the first "alternative" browser to be approved for use on Apple's iPhone and iPad Touch. Many were skeptical of Opera Mini's grand plan to tap into Apple devices.. especially mobile based products that mostly run on Apple designed software. The main software browser currently used on the iPhone and iPod Touch is the Apple trademark browser "Safari".

Opera 5 offers some neat features to mobile browsing, including a much awaited "tabbed browsing". And effortlessly auto-complete web addresses thanks to their sophisticated URL auto-completion process. Backup your bookmarks, Speed Dials, and search engines to My Opera, and keep them synchronized between different phones,or with Opera - on your desktop computers or laptops. And manage your downloads and many more.. read the full list of features here http://www.opera.com/mobile/features/

So what does Opera mini really offer.. or more correctly, how does Opera Mini really work..?? Well Opera Mini doesn't technically request and pull down Web pages through its own native code. Instead, Opera Mini uses what's called a proxy browser, because it sends Web page requests to Opera's servers, which then compress the Web page before sending it back to the phone. The result is not only an often-faster way to distribute Web content, but a legitimate way to bypass Apple's objection to most standalone HTML browsers.

The upside potential for iPhone and iPod Touch users when they use the Opera Mini software is speed. CNET reports that during their internal testing, Opera's Mini browser software "happens to be noticeably faster than Safari." In terms of performance Opera mini is definitely much better than Safari, it uses some pretty neat technology to get the job done.

Being accepted by Apple is one thing but surviving in competitive waters is completely different, it needs to meet the Apple users demands. Whether users will switch totally to the new browser or stick with the old guns or use both, only time will tell. Users will be pretty interested to try it out, you know just to see "what's new in this.??" But by default many application that uses web connection will connect through Safari.. so Safari is never out of the picture, just slightly shaken for the time being.

Take a look at the Video

Friday, April 9, 2010

Google's New Search Engine.. Only for Firefox Users.?!

Recently Google seems to have given a big upgrade to their to their trade mark search engine. It looks and feels great, and it offers great new searching features. All this is good but.. is the new search engine only available to Firefox users..?!?

The new upgrade to Google's search engine is dashing and it kinda looks cool too. Google has brought its search engine to new a level and it makes searching for your related topic quite easy, and this will definitely impress many of its users. Searching for different type of results is very easy with the new engine, local search and site search are very handy if your looking to buy something off the web. Direct explanation of the new features and options available in the new Google search would be a tough job, so I broke it down with a screen shot explanation of the new features. So click on the image below to get a better understanding of the new Google search engine.

Click on the thumbnail to enlarge

So with this amazing feature many people will find Google search engine more "attractive" in terms of searching.

But is the new search engine accessible to all..?! Well no..!! Or more correctly not yet..!! I found out myself that the new Google search options are only available to Firefox users at this point in time.. I actively use Google Chrome and Opera 10.5 but in their Google search, all results are displayed in the same old fashioned way, see pic..

Click on the thumbnail to enlarge..

Chrome View -
the old boring view of Google (notice the changes from the previous image)

Yes, it still has the new options and few more other new features here and there, but it is different to the results that are available to Firefox users. May be its just temporarily, or may be Google presents various search options for various browsers..!! Who knows why..?!?!

Bottom line is.. the new Google search officially rocks, and Firefox users get to enjoy it in full for the time being..!! :)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Is Opera the fastest web browser on earth..??

While claiming to be the "fastest web browser on earth" with Java script engine that loads 7x faster, with new "Opera Turbo" to help increase speed of slow connections and array of other features that came out with the new Opera browser. So is Opera the fastest web browser on earth..?? The answer is both Yes and a No.

I'm delighted that after years opera developers have built the web browser that will match many internet users demands. Earlier versions of the Opera were sluggish in performance coupled with poor user friendliness. I think it would be fair to say that Opera's new Java script engine does load faster in many cases than the others. Flash scripts although takes longer to load initially, after loading the feed back and response time is stunning, you will notice marked improvements on flash games and such (like barnbuddy or farmville which uses flash). Although I don't see much of difference in loading YouTube or flash based videos on Opera compared to Google Chrome, it is how ever a marked improvement from the previous versions. So it could be said that Opera is fast when it comes to loading web pages based on java script and flash.

"Opera Turbo" works well as featured, but I really wouldn't use it every time, because what Opera Turbo does to increase load time is it uses server-side optimization and compression technology that speeds up data transfer and reduces the amount of data that needs to be downloaded in order to view the page by up to 80%. Among other means, the compression is achieved by image down-sampling therefore some level of distortion in graphics may occur. So as they say to improve speed, page and image quality is lost as result. May be it is good for users with internet packages that has limited bandwidth usage per day/month.

But what stops it from being the "fastest browser in the world" as claimed. Their HTML loading is still pretty much the same. I really don't see much progress in the HTML loading features. It is good, but Firefox and Chrome out do Opera's performance in HTML script loading. Another problem I see is with their cache system, for example I used Opera several times to browse facebook and all the time the welcome page alone takes a longer time to load, so their cache system needs to buck up and deliver on smooth browsing.

I believe the new Opera is good in the present day market, and very good compared to other Opera versions that was available. But I would stop short of calling it the "fastest browser on earth", may be the used technology is first in the world but there is still more room for improvement. It is a amazing new browser with tons of new features and offers a lot to users.