Josh’s Lifelog for 2008-08-13

  • What’s on tap for SIGGRAPH today? Hope to help @jerry_makare with some videos. Brought the Eee PC 901, too. Will put it through its paces. #
  • @sumwan I dropped by the Nvidia booth yesterday. They did have some really cool stuff going on. #
  • In my hotel room capturing footage from @jerry_makare. Aside: the A/C in here doesn’t mess around. I can’t feel the tip of my nose. #
  • Missing so many cool events while I’m in LA: Ignite Phoenix last night, Lunch 2.0 in Portland today, and BackFencePDX going on right now. #
  • There’s weird, loud, ghostly music floating around the streets of downtown L.A. Outdoor concert? Unknown celestial phenomenon? Zombies? #
  • Glad to be home in PDX. Seatmate was a cool geek named Alvin on his way back from the Olympics in Beijing. #
  • NOT glad to come home to a heat wave. πŸ™ It was a LOT cooler (albeit more humid) in L.A. πŸ™ #
  • I normally hate talking to people on airplanes, but it was fun to geek out with Alvin. He admired my Kindle, showed me his Sony Reader, etc. #
  • @atmasphere Yeah, the Sony Reader is nice. But I honestly found it kind of bland. Screen is bigger, but Kindle = more organic design. #

Josh’s Lifelog for 2008-08-12

  • Big day at SIGGRAPH today. If you’re at the conference, let me know! Would love to say Hi! Also open to Tweetup opportunities… #
  • Wow. I forgot how HUGE the L.A. Convention is. Really, really huge. Big. #
  • @davechen I’m in meetings until the PM, then going to find a place to crunch on some video. Look for the orange shoes, and say hi! πŸ™‚ #
  • @amybarton I was just at the booth. Went by the room to ascertain the correct time. Now? In search of Mt Dew. πŸ™‚ Will come find you soon. #
  • @influxx Sorry to hear about the sick kid. Hope he/she feels better! #
  • At the Intel SIGGRAPH booth, the Intel Software Network kiosk has the new Lenovo W700 with integrated Wacom tablet. It’s a BIG fella! πŸ™‚ #
  • Pic of the Lenovo W700 about to swallow my MacBook Pro whole: http://twitpic.com/7gkr Will post a couple more pics to Flickr shortly. #
  • @rachelbancroft Hey! You’re not allowed to have hot sweaty fun without me. Unless you take pictures. πŸ˜‰ #
  • @influxx Not like the modbook or tablet pcs. It’s got one of those non-screen drawing tablets embedded in the wristrest next to the touchpad #
  • @robteix Thanks! I need to do another photo/post about my stickers. I hope to add more after SIGGRAPH and Gnomedex. #
  • At the Intel Blogger lunch briefing on the Larrabee SIGGRAPH paper. I’m undoubtedly the least-smart person in the room. πŸ™‚ #
  • This is social, get-to-know-each-other event, and it’s pretty hopping. Me? I’m sitting over in the corner on my laptop. As per usual. πŸ™‚ #
  • Met Mark VanDeWettering (@brainwagon) at the Pixar booth. He generously gave me a very cool RenderMan teapot. Best schwag ever. Thx Mark! πŸ™‚ #
  • I love telling people (and my kids) that I have a friend at Pixar, that makes the movies we love. πŸ™‚ #
  • @tomnovak I wanted a sticker for my laptop, but they don’t have any. Guy did tell me he has a Buy’N’Large sticker on his, though. I want! πŸ™‚ #
  • @camikaos Deal. πŸ™‚ #
  • Listening to an AMD (ATI) guy give a talk on 30-bit/10-bit color images at the Intel booth. A bit unexpected. πŸ™‚ #
  • There is some mindblowingly cool stuff in the black curtained New Tech area of the SIGGRAPH exhibit hall. Haptics, interactive 3-D, and more #
  • it’s like walking around in little chunks of the future that got somehow stuck in our time. πŸ™‚ #
  • @verso Even the Pixar guy didn’t know where he got the Buy N Large sticker, but I’ll keep my eye out! πŸ™‚ #
  • Met @davechen from Ars here at SIGGRAPH. He works for the National Library of Medicine. Ever hear of the Visible Human project? That’s them. #
  • Being around these thousands of smart, creative people makes me really want to kick my skills up a notch or four. Need to take more classes. #
  • And get cracking on the books I’ve been meaning to start writing. #
  • Bummed I’m not at Ignite Phoenix tonight. @jmoriarty and crew will put on a terrific event, no doubt. #
  • @unclenate I’ll try to get some video/more info on the haptic demos they have tomorrow. #
  • Updated my “hands on with the Lenovo W700” post with some info on price: http://tinyurl.com/5lv3wa Starts at $2900 for total barebones. #
  • But, to get all the good stuff on the Lenovo W700 (Quad core, Wacom, Blu-Ray, etc.), you’re looking at around $5500. Add $2000 for SSDs. #
  • @brainwagon Which CPK are you at? I’m browsing for a pizza place. Any recommendations? #
  • 2Across (iPhone crossword app) was easily the best $5.99 I’ve ever spent. Been enjoying it immensely for little doses of brain candy. #
  • Whoa! 3 alarm fire at Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino! No injuries reported. Here’s video: http://tinyurl.com/58urxx Let the jokes begin.. #
  • Hat tip to @ericrice, saw it first via his FriendFeed. Looks like the building on fire is Valley Green 6. #
  • @stonetable Try this link (video of the fire at Apple campus): http://cbs5.com/video/?id=37814@kpix.dayport.com #

Hands On with the Lenovo ThinkPad W700 with built in WACOM tablet

At the Intel SIGGRAPH booth, I ran into something unexpected at the Intel Software Network kiosk – a brand new (just announced this week) Lenovo ThinkPad W700.

Lenovo ThinkPad W700 about to swallow my bestickered Mac Book Pro whole

Besides being quite big (you can see it’s about to swallow my bestickered MacBook Pro whole), this Centrino 2-based monster’s claim to fame is the integrated Wacom drawing tablet in the wristrest.

Lenovo ThinkPad W700 with built in Wacom drawing tablet

The specs are extremely impressive, too: 17″ WUXGA (1920×1280) display, Intel Core 2 Extreme quad core 3.0GHz CPU, up to 8GB of RAM, an NVIDIA GPU with 1GB of RAM, and two hard drive bays for RAID 0 or RAID 1. This is pretty much the fastest portable on the planet.

Perfect for artists, webcomic creators, Photoshop junkies, and anyone else who doesn’t want to lug their external drawing tablet around. Instead, you can just lug the W700 around, because it’s a stretch to even call this bad boy a “laptop”. πŸ˜‰

I think this system has officially claimed the title of “Lapzilla” from the 17″ MacBook Pro. Saw some more of it at the Lenovo booth, and there’s no other way to describe it other than “monster”. πŸ™‚

Oh, and for reference, prices start at around $2900.

That price, however, doesn’t include much. Only a Core 2 Duo processor, 2GB of RAM, lower resolution screen, no Wacom tablet, 512MB VRAM, etc.

Maxed out with all the goodies (Quad core processor – $875, WUXGA screen – $225, 4GB RAM – $170, Wacom tablet and Pantone color corrector – $150, 1GB VRAM – $400, 2 fast hard drives in RAID 0 – $435, and a Blu-Ray drive – $450 inflates the price up to a whopping $5500. And that doesn’t even include the even more spendy option for a pair of fast SATA 64GB SSD drives (which you can’t apparently RAID together), which would add another $2000+ to the price. Yikes. I guess the size isn’t the only “monster” thing about the W700. πŸ˜‰

Update: Here are a couple more photos, of the monster W700 trying to eat my little 8.9″ Eee PC 901. πŸ™‚

Big and Little - Lenovo W700 and an Eee PC 901

Monster Lenovo W700 Swallowing a closed Eee PC 901


Josh’s Lifelog for 2008-08-11

  • Waiting at PDX for my flight to LA. Power is out in the B gates area, they can’t retract one of the jetways. Luckily, not my flight. πŸ™‚ #
  • Power at PDX B gates restored, jetway retracted, crisis averted. Threat level dropped to that ugly gray carpet color. #
  • Waiting for bags at LAX. And noting that Gmail IMAP is not working on my phone. Yet Another Datapoint for the ongoing outage. #
  • Just pulled 1.2Mbps on AT&T 3G at LAX. Nice. πŸ™‚ #
  • To everyone saying “ha ha, that’s why I don’t use gmail!”, first, it’s really annoying. Don’t be a jerk. #
  • Second, let’s compare features, price, and uptime records for the last few years between Gmail and what you use. πŸ˜‰ #
  • Because, you know, no other mail host ever has problems. #
  • @iSundevil I use this page from DSLReports for iPhone speedtesting: http://i.dslr.net/tinyspeedtest.html #
  • @Britopian I wasn’t referring to you (or anyone) in particular. Just noticing a TON of people in general being smug about the Gmail outage. #
  • Reading up on the history of the ACM (Assn. of Computing Machinery) and SIGGRAPH. http://tinyurl.com/698ynn Quite prestigious and acclaimed. #
  • Dear @twitter: I have 2370 followers. A few hundred are probably spammers. I don’t care if you limit to 2000, but don’t punish me for spamrs #
  • @JesseStay No, I don’t follow that many. I follow about 500, but 2370 follow me. Which is subject to the 2000 limit? #
  • @ejacqui Latest Twitter rumor is that they’re capping followers at 2000 per account. 2370 already follow me. If true, no new ppl can follow. #
  • OK, I’m confused. How many people can *I* follow on Twitter? How many people can follow *me*? #
  • OK, so I can only FOLLOW 2000 people. No problem. I’m only following 500 now, and that will likely not grow too much. Sorry for the FUD! πŸ™‚ #
  • @ebohling Yes, it is true. The original iPhone plans weren’t eligible for corp discounts. The 3G is – even the data plan. It rocks. πŸ™‚ #
  • What I’m doing this week: Watching the beginning of the future of computing and software: http://tinyurl.com/5a4zq7 #
  • @Britopian no, my iPhone is not connected to Intel in any way. And I like it like that. πŸ™‚ #

At SIGGRAPH in L.A., Watching the Future of Computing Unfold

I’m at the SIGGRAPH 2008 conference in Los Angeles this week. My group, Intel Software Network, has a lot of cool stuff going on this week around the recent paper that was published on the Larrabee architecture.

I just put up a post on the ISN blog, about the history of SIGGRAPH and the ACM, and then waxing a bit philosophical about Larrabee and the future of computing as we know it:

I can’t shake the feeling that the Larrabee Architecture paper that was just published by the ACM, written mostly by Intel engineers, is one of those landmark events in computing. I’m really not trying to add to the hype that’s already surrounding Larrabee. There’s enough of that already. But it really is going to be a huge leap in computing. Imagine that in a couple of years, instead of having one, or two, or maybe four cores, your computer could have a Larrabee card with 24 or 32 (I’m guessing – this number isn’t final) programmable x86 cores that can be set to any task that benefits from massive parallelism (like, say, making that 3D game you’re playing look REALLY pretty and smooth), along with 8 “bigger” traditional Nehalem (I mean, Core i7) processor cores that do the things your current single or dual core processor does. Oh, and with Hyperthreading, all of those cores can run more than one thread, which makes them appear as even more “virtual” processors to the operating and software that use them.

How in the world are operating systems, applications, and games going to have to change to deal with this massive shift to many cores and many threads?

I’ll be posting more, and helping to get some videos of the cool stuff here at SIGGRAPH posted quickly to ISN’s video site, Take Five, so keep any eye out over there for any cool stuff I come across.

It’s things like this that make me love my job! πŸ™‚


Microposts from Twitter on 2008-08-08

  • Wow, the new iPhone version of Google Translate is pretty slick. #
  • Headed on an extended family trip to Mount St. Helens today. Extended family, not extended trip. Yay for nearby active volcanos! πŸ™‚ #
  • Dear Zipcar driver who stayed 10-20mph BELOW the speed limit the ENTIRE 47 miles from Mt St Helens to I-5: Die in a horrible fire. :-$ #
  • (we didn’t pass said Zipcar because I was last in a three car convoy that also held my MIL, not the speediest driver herself) #
  • That experience took YEARS off of my life. I’m still twitching… #
  • @ravenzachary I considered stopping, but was last in the convoy. Related: AT&T has no cell service on WA504 once you leave the I-5 corridor. #
  • I forgot to mention an added joy during the life-shortening car trip: Gabe’s piercing cause-real-physical-pain shrieks and seat kicking. #
  • @marusin Yes, as long as your USB port lights up the charge light on the Kindle. Turn off the radio, too. That makes a BIG difference. #
  • @TiEsQue Yeah, I can only imagine the series of events that led to teenagers renting a Zipcar to go see Mount St. Helens. πŸ™‚ #
  • @StevenWalling Just because one is over 21 does not mean that one knows how to drive. Or that one is not an idiot. πŸ™‚ #

Microposts from Twitter on 2008-08-07

  • Voting on avatar photos for @mungara in staff meeting. πŸ™‚ #
  • @jmoriarty LOL yes, multiple Twitter logins can be dangerous. πŸ™‚ If it makes you feel any better, I’ve done that many, many times. πŸ™‚ #
  • Dear Twitter: How do I tell Safari/Mac OS to open PDFs with Preview instead of Acrobat, permanently, for all .PDF files? #
  • @wgmaxon Thanks! Was asking for @tersteeg, actually, and we were timing how long an answer would take from Twitter. Less than 3 minutes. πŸ™‚ #
  • @jrnoded Thanks! That’s the other half of it. You guys rock! #
  • The Oregon AIr Show starts tomorrow, across the street from Intel Jones Farm. They should be practicing today – I’m listening for big jets. #
  • Let’s do this again. Dear Twitter: What’s the best Twitter client for Linux (on an Eee PC)? Is there a great one? I may just stick to web. #
  • @ahockley AIR for Linux is in Alpha. I’m a bit wary of messing with it, but it would be the best option, opening up Twhirl and the others. #
  • @jarvitron Has anyone installed AIR on Xandros linux on an Eee PC? Can I just apt-get it? Thanks for putting up with me while I experiment. #
  • Got AIR and Twhirl working on the Eee PC. That wasn’t TOO painful, as long as you’re not afraid of the command line. πŸ˜‰ #
  • @kevinctofel @jameskendrick Do you guys publish per-category RSS feeds? I need a feed of your Mini-notebooks category. Thanks! πŸ™‚ #
  • @askseesmic I’m going to write up the Twhirl/AIR on Eee PC steps, eventually, But I just followed the directions on the Adobe site for AIR. #
  • Dear Twitter: What’s the best way to show event-related Tweets on a screen in the halls at said event? What did OSCON, etc. use? #
  • @pdxflaneur That’s exactly what I’m looking for. Do you know what app they used to display the tweets? #
  • @pdxflaneur Yeah, I think it was a custom app. But if you come up with anything, let me know! #
  • Perusing the visual twitter options for IDF with @annierodkins. Checking out the apps on this page: http://tinyurl.com/5aunw2 #
  • Flotzam looks like a good option. It’s a windows app, but that should work. http://tinyurl.com/2nln7e #
  • Going nuts, trying to make sure I don’t forget anything before I leave. Day trip to Mount St. Helens tomorrow, then SIGGRAPH next week. #

Microposts from Twitter on 2008-08-06

  • Finished “Breaking Dawn” last night. Great book if you like the series. Lots of twists. Not sure why it’s attracting so much hate. #
  • @iSundevil You can browse/search Amazon’s Kindle books, to see if what you’re looking for is available: http://tinyurl.com/5enz46 #
  • Whee! My Eee PC 901 20GB Linux version arrived! It’s a wee PC! Squee! πŸ™‚ #
  • @jezlyn I agree. It was fan service – giving the people who love the characters what they want, rather than taking itself too seriously. #
  • Hmm. The Eee PC 901 Linux version comes with Firefox 2 instead of 3. Strange. Will upgrade soon, but I want to run “stock” for a while. #
  • @Yasumoto The Eee PC 901, with the 8.9″ screen and 1.6GHz Atom processor is $599. Windows version has 12GB, Linux version 20GB. #
  • @Yasumoto There are other, less expensive netbooks, though. MSI Wind, Acer Aspire One, Dell, Lenovo. They shoot closer to $300. #
  • So, a couple days later, what’s the verdict on iPhone OS 2.0.1 on a 3G? I’m hearing scary things from @xenijardin… πŸ™ #
  • @gregr Thanks for the vote of confidence. To everyone – does it make the interminably long “Backing up your iPhone” go faster? #
  • Because seriously, I haven’t synced my iPhone in a week or so, and it’s been “backing up” for almost an hour now… πŸ™ #
  • Anyone know where the @gnomedex Friday night party is going to be? Trying to decide if a $50 party pass for @rachelbancroft is warranted. #
  • @sondrasondra I think that’s the Thursday night welcome reception/party. At least, that’s where it’s been the past few years. #
  • @verso The Twilight Saga, of which Breaking Dawn is the 4th and presumably last, is a teenage love story with humans, vampires, and more. #
  • @verso It’s campy, emo, and the largest audience is probably Mormon housewives. But I loved the whole series. πŸ™‚ #
  • Giving in, installing iPhone OS 2.0.1. Wish me luck. #
  • @fiveforefun Yes, the Twilight movie should be… interesting. The trailer is boring. The series has a RABID fan base, though. #
  • @chrisorourke I’ve heard that 2.0.1 does revert jailbroken phones, as most updates do (until the community catches up). #
  • @sumwan I hadn’t heard of Dashwire, but it looks pretty cool. Let us know if you try it! #
  • iPhone 2.0.1 update went without a hitch. Now to see if I notice any differences. A backup happened in less than an hour, so hey… #
  • FT.com / Columnists / John Gapper – Why Sony lost the battle of the e-book (via FriendFeed) #
  • Informal Eee PC 901 (Linux) battery observation: 1.5 hours browsing the web (802.11n), battery at 79% left. #
  • That little sub-2-watt Atom chip really sips power. The 6 cell 6600mWh battery helps a lot, too. Wonder how many hours I can get out of ’em? #
  • @philips Which Eee PC model? I’m optimistic about the combo of an Atom proc (2 watts to .5 watts) big battery. Will experiment with OSes. #