Supercomputer Retired; USPTO Rejects ‘iPad Mini’; AT&T Nabs 64GB HTC One
Topping tech headlines over the weekend, the world’s first supercomputer to reach a sustained petaflop in operations per second has officially been retired.
IBM’s Roadrunner, which topped the world’s most powerful supercomputers list in 2008 and 2009, was decommissioned Sunday as researchers turned off its 12,960 IMB PowerXCell 8i and 6,480 AMD Opteron dual-core processors, nearly 114 terabytes of memory, and about 1.09 million terabytes of storage. The Los Alamos National Laboratory, the Roadrunner’s home base, will continue to run experiments on the computer.
In other news, the United States Patent and Trademark Office has denied Apple a trademark for the company’s iPad mini tablet. The primary reason for the rejection is that the iPad mini mark “merely describes a feature of characteristic of applicant’s good,” the USPTO said. Cupertino still has the right to reply to the denial of its trademark application and correct the issues that reviewers have found. If the company can show that “mini” is somehow a distinctive name, and not just a word other manufacturers would use to describe their product, it may be able to win over the patent office.
Meanwhile, AT&T snagged the exclusive rights to the 64GB HTC One, leaving all other carriers to cap out at a 32GB version. The smartphone is expected to arrive before the end of April. In the meantime, technophiles can salivate of the 468-pixels-per-inch, 1080 display, 1.7-GHz quad-core processor, 2GB memory, and 2300mAh battery.
Also making headlines this weekend:
- Industrious Users Performing iMessage Denial-of-Service Attacks: All it takes is a little bit of AppleScript and access to your email address or phone number for an attacker to bombard your iMessage into surrender.
- GDC: Oculus VR, Ouya Kickstart Up a Storm: Oculus wows the crowd with demos of its Rift virtual reality platform; Ouya makes headlines by announcing June 4 retail launch of $99, Android-based console.
- Tactile Helmet Uses Vibrations to Help Firefighters ‘See’ in the Dark: Pads inside the helmet vibrate in the direction of nearby objects, walls, and big, burning things.
- 9 Awesome ‘Game of Thrones’ Parody Videos: Game of Thrones returned for season three Sunday. In celebration of the new season, check out these parody videos of HBO’s hit fantasy drama.
- Cesar Chavez Google Doodle Draws Easter Ire: To some, Chavez is not the “reason for the season,” as it were. And they’re hoppin’ mad.
- GDC: Hands On With the Oculus Rift Developer Kit: Three minutes of thrilling, immersive virtual reality courtesy of Oculus VR gives credence to the view that the ‘future of gaming’ is here and nearly ready to ship.
- Why Watch Doctor Who?: Doctor who? If you’ve never investigated the 50-year-old TV show about a time traveler in a broken time machine, here’s what you need to know for the Doctor’s return this weekend.
By Stephanie Mlot, PCMag