Faraday Technology SoCreative! IV Kit Facilitates Custom SoC Design and Software Implementation

Faraday Technology has unveiled “SoCreative! IV”, a SoC development kit based on Faraday A380 SoC featuring  a dual-core ARM Cortex A9 processor, an ARMv5-compliant core developed by the company, and a high speed expansion bus for interfacing with FPGA daughtercards. A380 SoC has been designed for cloud infrastructure market, including networking, computing, and storage applications. The company has not listed the specifications, but here’s what I could derived from the picture above, and the info found on Linux Gizmos article. SoC – Farady A380 dual core Cortex A9 @ 1GHz, with ARMv5-compliant FA626TE RISC processor @ 500MHz, and 512MB L2 cache. BGA package (31x31mm), 40nm process. System Memory – 1GB DDR3-1600 RAM Storage – 4Gb NAND Flash (512MB), 128Mb of NOR flash, 64Mb of SPI flash, I2C EEPROM, and SD Card slot. Video Output – DSUB for 24-bit LCD I/F up to 1280×1280 Audio – Mic In, Audio In/Out, Audio codec. I/Os, ports and expansions: 2x Gigabit Ethernet with programmable …

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$79 Plug Makes Creating Your Own Cloud Easy

The “Plug” is a device with an Ethernet connection, and a USB port that allows you to connect up to 8 USB drives, and access those in a unified fashion from all your devices. It’s a bit like dropbox, except you are in charge, and the price per GB is much cheaper than cloud services. The Cloud Guys have launched a kickstarter campaign that has already received over $220,000 in pledges after just over two days. The Plug technical specifications are as follows: OpenWRT based Embedded Linux x86 compatible processor Port for your hard drive –  USB 2.0 Port for Internet – Ethernet port 10/100 Mbps Average transfer speed: 30 Mbps Supported file systems: NTFS, HFS+, Ext3/Ext4, FAT32 Number of drives supported (using an external USB hub): 8 LED Display: Power/ Action Dimensions – 270mm (W) x 110mm (D) x 20mm (H) (This must be wrong as it seems way too big compared to the picture shown in the video) 70 …

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Nvidia GRID Platform, Tegra 4 Processor and Project SHIELD Game Console at CES 2013

CES 2013 has finally started, and Nvidia has had a pretty amazing keynote with some PC gaming announcements such as “GeForce Experience” which is a piece a software that can configure your games settings automatically based on your PC hardware (e.g. processor and GPU), and 3 cloud and mobile devices announcements: Nvidia GRID Platform – Cloud Gaming Server with 240 Nvidia GPUs. Nvidia Tegra 4 – Nvidia 4 cores Cortex A15 , 72 GPU and SDR modem SoC for tablets and smartphones. Nvidia Project Shield – Game console with a 5″ display powered by Tegra 4 that can also act as a game controller, and play PC games on your TV. Nvidia GRID Platform NVIDIA GRID Cloud Gaming Platform is comprised of 20 GRID server per rack with a total of 240 Nvidia GPU capable of 200 TFLOPS or the equivalent of 700 Xbox 360. Nvidia GRID render 3D graphics in the cloud in order to allow virtually any device …

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Qualcomm Vuforia SDK 2.0 Augmented Reality Development Kit Leverages the Cloud

Qualcomm has just announced their new Vuforia SDK 2.0 for Android and iOS to enable developers to create augmented reality applications for those platforms. Key new features include: Cloud Recognition Service – Up to now developers were limited to about 100 images on the target device due to limited storage space, but thanks to the Cloud recognition service, apps can “see” more than 1 million images, creating new mobile augmented reality (AR) opportunities for retailers and publishers. For example, every product (or image) in a store can bring associated content from the retailer’s website and render it directly on top of the product (or image). Watch American Apparel AR app video demo for an example of such app. The Cloud Recognition service requires a Vuforia Web Services account which is free for developers (Limited to 1,000 images, 3000 events per months), but is subject to fees for businesses. User-Defined Targets – Augmented reality apps usually require a known target image …

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Embedded Systems Outlook and Trends for 2012

National Instruments has recently published a report entitled “Embedded Systems Outlook 2012 – Key Technologies and Methodologies Impacting the Embedded Systems Market” which lists technology and business trends for the development of embedded systems. Here are the key findings: Technologies & Architectures: Embedded Platforms Technology providers are developing components, modules, or even complete embedded platforms (software + hardware) with higher levels of integration and increased functionality to speed up time to market. System-on-Chip (SoC) and System-on-Module (SoM) benefit from this trend and some also embed a FPGA. Reconfigurable Computing Previously, designers chose between low-cost microcontroller or high performance CPU based on the expected performance needs of the embedded system. As cost decreases and performance increases, low cost devices such as control and monitoring systems now often come with more features thanks to the use of programmable logic. This type of flexibility can be achieved by adding an FPGA to the MCU / MPU in the embedded systems platform. Mobile Devices and …

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Pogoplug Series 4: Linux Based NAS with Cloud Storage

One month after launching Pogoplug Cloud, Pogoplug announces the Pogoplug Series 4, a new version of Pogoplug that adds more local storage options, including two USB 3.0 ports and a SATA/USM port. The device is based on Marvell 88F6192 chip with ARM V5 CPU clocked at 800Mhz with 128 RAM and runs Linux. Pogoplug Cloud service gives 5GB of free online cloud storage optimized for mobile phones and tablets, and you can greatly expand this by connecting a hard disk or SSD to Pogoplug Series 4. Pogoplug also plans to offer premium account with 50 and 100 GB of cloud storage. Key Pogoplug features include: Storage: Automatically upload photos and videos from your mobile device to Pogoplug Cloud. Sharing: Instantly share anything in your cloud through email, Facebook, Twitter and Google+. Create shared folders to collaborate with friends and colleagues. Streaming: Stream HD videos, photos and music from Pogoplug Cloud to your phone. The Pogoplug 4 has the same “streamlined design” introduced in …

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Embedded Hardware & Systems Trends for 2012 and Beyond

VDC Research currently has a research program called “STRATEGIC INSIGHTS 2012: EMBEDDED HARDWARE & SYSTEMS” where they analyze potential opportunities and give forecasts for embedded systems market through 2016. Some recent insights from their ongoing coverage of the Embedded Hardware & Systems market include: The Communications / Networking market is engaged in a period of dynamic change that is redefining the sector’s processing requirements. FPGAs & Linux are redefining embedded market growth requirements. The smart grid is creating new opportunities for embedded processors. Single board computers are enabling next-generation computing for military / aerospace applications. The Institute for Supply Management’s PMI index continues to demonstrate isolated pockets of regional growth, suggesting that new project starts and sustained unit shipments will maintain embedded market growth in 2012. The final reports should be available in 2012 as follows: TRACK 1: FASTFORWARD: INSIGHT FOR LEADERS Volume Number Volume Title Publication Date 1 Generating Revenue from Embedded Cloud Enablement Services March 2012 2 CleanTech: …

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Energy Efficiency of ARM Architecture for Cloud Computing Applications

Following “Pandaboard Cloud Cluster Running Google App Engine” post, there were some questions regarding the actual power efficiency of ARM servers vs Intel (Xeon) servers and some commenters questioned the performance of ARM chips. I’ve found a thesis evaluating how the energy efficiency of the ARMv7 architecture based processors Cortex-A9 and Cortex-A8 compares – in applications such as a SIP Proxy and a web server (Apache2) – to Intel Xeon processors. The focus of this thesis is to compare the energy efficiency between the two architectures rather than pure performance where the Xeon largely outperforms ARM processors, although a cluster of ARM servers could be used instead to reach the same processing power. Depending on the application, benchmarks indicate energy efficiency of 3-11 times greater for the ARM Cortex-A9 in comparison to the Intel Xeon. The full thesis (74 pages) is available below. Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as …

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