IT Trends :: Thursday, June 15, 2006

New Technology

University of Bristol to Purchase New Supercomputers

How super are these supercomputers that the University of Bristol is acquiring? “At peak performance, the multimillion-pound, high-performance computers will carry out over 13 trillion calculations per second. That is equivalent to the entire population of the world working simultaneously on hand-held calculators for about three hours.” ClusterVision, IBM, and ClearSpeed are supplying the hardware, computing power and performance… (HPCwire)

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Reading Room Renovations Begin

MIT’s Student Center reading room is getting a technological makeover. Designers incorporated everything from ID-activated locker storage units to light fixtures with retractable shades. Individual and group work areas will include electronic white boards that allow people to store and download what is written. They will also include LCD panels to enhance presentations. The budget is about $1.2 million for the entire overhaul… (The Tech)

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Deaf Students Express Dissent Along a High-Tech Grapevine

Some students aren’t happy with the new choice for Gallaudet University president. Students at this school for the deaf use camera phones, text messaging, instant messaging, blogging, and other forms of communication to express their concern. One person in this article says that with new technology, deaf students “have access, communication, and I’ve noticed…people are looking at things in a bigger light…They have the courage to come up and talk about these things.”… (The Washington Post)

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Pentagon Sets its Sights on Social Networking Web Sites

The Pentagon’s National Security Agency will fund “research into the mass harvesting of the information that people post about themselves on social networks.” This article explores the technology behind the government’s plans and explains the Resource Description Framework that can organize Web data into an easily searchable structure. The University of Southampton’s David de Roure says, “It means that you will be able to ask a Web site questions you couldn’t ask before, or perform calculations on the data it contains.”… (New Scientist)

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