ARM Unveils Cortex-A7 and big.LITTLE processing

ARM unveiled the Cortex A7, a new core with higher performance than the Cortex A8 (1.5x) and with 5 times less power consumption. It will be used in conjunction with Cortex-A15 Core and allows big.LITTLE processing where the Cortex A7 (companion core) takes care of the low performance, low power tasks (social network, email, SMS, phone calls) and the Cortex A15 kicks in for high performance tasks such as video processing and gaming. Here’s an excerpt of the Cortex A7 / big.LITTLE processing press release: ARM today announced the ARM® Cortex™-A7 MPCore™ processor – the most energy-efficient application class processor ARM has ever developed, and big.LITTLE processing – a flexible approach that redefines the traditional power and performance relationship. The Cortex-A7 processor builds on the low-power leadership established by the Cortex-A8 processor that is at the heart of many of today’s most popular smartphones. A single Cortex-A7 processor delivers 5x […]

Android 4.0 SDK and Platform Highlights

Google has just released Android 4.0 (ICS) preview SDK and platform highlights. Android 4.0 Highlights Summary New User Features: Refined, evolved UI – Common action more visible, new typeface, improved multitaksing and notifications. Home screen folders and favorites tray – New home screen folders offer a new way for users to group their apps and shortcuts logically. Resizable widgets – Interactive widgets are resizable, so users can expand them to show more content or shrink them to save space New lock screen actions – The lock screens now let users do more without unlocking such as accessing the camera app. Quick responses for incoming calls – Respond by pre-written SMS if you are busy during a call Swipe to dismiss notifications, tasks, and browser tabs Improved text input and spell-checking – The softkeyboard now comes with a spell-checker and can automatically correct typos. Powerful voice input engine – Talk to […]

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Delete Old Revisions to Reduce Time to First Byte for WordPress Blogs

I’ve already implemented several steps to improve this blog performance: Install W3 Total Cache plugin. Register to CloudFlare CDN to reduce the load on the server. Those two work pretty well, but there was still a problem with the Time to First Byte according to http://www.webpagetest.org. It got an F mark for First Byte Time. Sometimes I would get TTFB (Time To First Byte) of 20 seconds and more. TTFB is synonym of slow back-end processing either because of poorly optimized software or insufficient hardware specs or both. Part of the problem is probably due to my hosting provider (I use a shared hosting) and I sometimes get very high server load in CPanel (e.g. 50 (4 cpus)) whether my blog is running or not. But I found a blog post explaining how to try to reduce the TTFB for WordPress blog by installing Better Delete Revision plugin in order […]

Online Petition Requesting to Allow Linux Installation on Windows 8 Devices

Back in September, some concerns emerged about UEFI secure boot requirement for Windows 8 and its possible consequences on Linux and other open source operating systems: it may be impossible to install such systems on computers or devices shipped with Windows 8, either by replacing Windows 8 or in a dual boot installation as the bootloader (UEFI) would prevent such installation for security reasons. Microsoft has already replied to those concerns and stated that: At the end of the day, the customer is in control of their PC. … We work with our OEM ecosystem to provide customers with this flexibility. The security that UEFI has to offer with secure boot means that most customers will have their systems protected against boot loader attacks. For the enthusiast who wants to run older operating systems, the option is there to allow you to make that decision. So there should be an […]

Google and Samsung Galaxy Nexus Android 4.0 Smartphone

Samsung and Google jointly announced the very first Android 4.0 (ICS) smartphone in Hong Kong. They did not get too original to name the device. Remember the Nexus S and Galaxy S series? Well, the smartphone is named Galaxy Nexus. The phone features a dual-core Texas Instruments OMAP4460 processor, a 4.65″ super AMOLED plus display (1280×720),  LTE/HSPA+ network support, 1080p video recoding, NFC, barometer and more. It will be sold in the US, Europe and Asia (including Japan and China) in November. After Samsung showcased the smartphone, Google presented the new Android 4.0 (ICS). 3 Design principles: Beautiful: Enchant me Easy: Simplify my life Powerful and Smart Here are the main points I gatherer of Android 4 presentation: The new UI uses the Roboto font. They removed the physical buttons on the smartphone. Everything is now done with gestures. It looks like Honeycomb for smartphone with stacks and widgets. Widgets […]

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Current and Future Intel Atom Processors Promotion Video

Intel upload a new promotion video about the application made possible by Intel Atom processors: home and building management, intelligent displays, retail, IVI, communications devices, digital signage and more. You’ll see applications built around Intel Atome6xx, e6x5c, z6xx as well as future Intel Atom processors using 32nm process (Cedar Trail?)

Using Raspberry Pi as an Internet Kiosk

Following up on this morning post explaining how to get the kernel and minimal rootfs to run debian in qemu emulating an ARM1176 processor, I’ll show how to make a minimal rootfs to run Chrome browser in this platform. I tested it in QEMU, but this should also run on the Raspberry Pi hardware. First, you’ll have to complete the step I provided in Raspberry Pi Emulator in Ubuntu with Qemu. Start qemu: sudo qemu-system-arm -M versatilepb -cpu arm1176 -m 256 -hda rootfs.ext2 -kernel zImage -append “root=/dev/sda” -serial stdio Once you login to the console as root, create a new user (e.g guest): adduser guest This user will be needed to login with the graphical interface and ssh. In order to get an Internet Kiosk, we’ll need a web browser (Chromium) and a window manger. I chose fluxbox instead of gnome because of the size difference (8651 KB vs 1739 […]

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