HanishKVC’s General Blog zone

June 7, 2010

Apples 2010 New iPhone 4 and the new stories

Filed under: Android,Apple,Blogroll,General,India,life,Nokia,technology — hanishkvc @ 8:25 pm

Tracking Steve y from wwdc 2010 on engadget. For what else but to see what new stories they come up with this time.

As usual there is the marketing sweet talk from Stevey. Now if you cut all the crap and look at reality the buckets are

**** Good (not necessarily first, but still good to see)
* using frame as part of antenna system
* not blindly uping the megapixy but do sensible thing ie keep megpies in check but try and improve quality (not sure how many remember Palms vga camera in their mobile which was a similar strategy from them eons back ie quality over blind quantity )

**** the gas (nothing new, but as usual nice stories/spin from Steve)
* retina display – natural progression from the already existing 800*480 phones from other vendors
* A4 – good Arm core like any other current gen Arm core
* Multitasking – finally some sense went to appy, but still some more work left
* ibook – ebook reader, less supported format than others out there. And potentialy locked. (My prayer, Oh God, don’t let Apple fanboys kill the EPaper based ebook readers by the stupid Buzz that Apple and some of their blind zombies generate)
* video calling and 2nd camera – even in India where iphone comes 1 year late and almost locked and at a premium, NOKIA had the support for standards based video calling even before 2007 (ie even before apple iphone was born)
* iads – ads been there for ages, and even interactive ads have been there for long time in other CE device domains and in mobiles sometime back
* thinner phone – natural progression from all companies. And don’t forget no physical keyboardy.
* video editing – as usual new in apple universe, but pretty old in other vendor mobiles
* Gyro – natural progression, already used in other device domains

Conclusion, Nothing new or great here, but still have to give it to them for taking the less traveled path wrt Antennae design and Camera.

Rather than the stupid marketing spin of Retina display, they could have been technically path breaking if they had actually brought something like the PixelQi LCD+EPaper display into their product.

Have to give it to Google, as it stands now, they are in a better position with their Android platform in the mobile phone market. And Nokia, please wake up and come out with some good high end phones including Linux based (Meego or Android (why not), now that you have killed Maemo).

(Tried Google buzz for Appy Steveys’ 4th iPhony, updated a bit for here)

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December 6, 2009

The Bad and the Good, ARM Netbook will be WORSE wrt Open source

Filed under: General,OpenSource,technology — hanishkvc @ 5:14 pm
A debate has been going on in the Linux community wrt Intel, GMA500 (Poulsbo, PowerVR) and the pathetic support for the same. Some felt (or may feel) that the potential ARM based netbooks could solve their Problem, NOW truth couldn’t be more contrasting than this, so I posted a response on a related and good article requesting Intel to come to their senses on Linux Journal. I am publishing my response to “that article and the comments it generated“, here
**** My comment FROM Linux Journal site ****
On December 6th, 2009 hanishkvc (not verified) says:
Hi All,
To summarise things as it stand today wrt Netbooks/UMPC/MID market and TRUE Open source and Intel Vs ARM.
a) Processor
—————-
* Arm is Good at Power consumption but bit low on Performance
* Intel is good at performance but bit low on Power compared to Arm levels
But given the tradeoffs, it is to be expected. Intel Atom is slowly moving towards the Arm territory with respect to Power AND Arm is slowly moving towards the Intel territory wrt Performance wrt the Cortex AX cores relative to Mobile platforms like Netbooks.
BUT coming to FREE AVAILIBILITY of DOCUMENTATION of their Chips and its associated peripherals, Intel is slightly better than ARM Inc (Where is the up to date ARMARM document ARM Inc wrt latest Arm versions ???, SO TRUE OpenSource People PLEASE DONT ASSUME that Arm is better and one should switch from Intel to Arm (what a person mentioned above), you cann’t be more wrong, wrt what we want ultimately.
b) Core Chipset (All IO in General)
————————————
Keeping power consumption in mind, today Arm based SOCs are better integrated and flexible wrt all io modules be it ram, graphics, video, 3d, audio, expansion (serial,parallel buses), core support logics (Timers, IntCntr), storage cards AND finally additional integrated coprocessors.
Intel was stuck with bad companion chipset combinations for such low power requirement products like Netbook (i.e provided you want Netbook to be full day computing) so they had to come out with a low power companion chipset for Atom (Be it N series or Z series) AND the FIRST step in that direction from Intel is what US15 (Poulsbo) is and that in turn uses GMA500 (PowerVR). They have still bit more distance to travel to match ARM SOCs here, but atleast it is a start.
Hopefull either
* they will be able to get support for GMA500 added to Mainstream linux thro either a regularly updated binary driver or better a open source driver or best case being open up the documentation for it.
* OR replace PowerVR 3D+Video core with their own in the future generation of the Atom companion chipsets or the Integrated CPU+GPU soc (the current one is still PowerVR).
DONT FORGET THAT Majority of the ARM SOCs out their use the PowerVR 3D + Proprietry (Dependent on who makes the SOC) Video accelerators. So A ARM based Netbook will be AS BAD OR WORSE THAN the current Intel Netbook platform AS FAR AS TRUE OPEN SOURCE people are concerned.
OR LUCKY for all, Imagination Opens up the documentation or releases a Open source driver for 2D, 3D and Video logic of their logic.
**** END of my comment from Linux Journal site ****
Update: Rather I forgot one more important related point while posting at LJ, it is -> If we go further and look at free documentation for the Arm based SOC, then things will turn out to be much worse in general (there are exceptions – where certain SOC vendors have provided good documentation for the basic SOC part, but even they leave out the powerful features of their SOC from documenting freely) so we still have some distance to go before we can say Open source and ARM based Netbooks in the same breadth.

May 17, 2007

BeYOND stupidity SONY, do LOOK = Come to your senses, allow Indian PS3 Owners access to Playstation Store +++, Link India PS site from global

Filed under: gaming,General,India,life,protest,PS3,Sony,technology — hanishkvc @ 8:39 pm

Hi Sony / Sony India if you are listening.

  1. At first you charge us a lot for your PS3 (among the highest rates in the world for PS3)[I mind(50-50), luckily I got it when coming from US],
  2. next you give us a very small set of Games for PS3 [I mind it very much, its bad],
  3. On top you don’t allow us access to Playstation Store[I mind it very very much, its daytime robbery],

WHAT LOGIC ?e?IS THIS.

Please look BeYOND your foolish/senseless/stupid attitude and logic and correct these mistakes. Atleast if you can’t fix <1>(cost of PS3) above, then atleast because Indians are paying you a lot more compared to many other regions atleast fix <2> (game library) and <3> (PSN store++) above.

Similarly in future once Playstation HOME debuts don’t repeat the same mistakes. Let Indians participate in it from Day one.

Also I am also a Sony PSP owner in India and even Sonys’ own stores don’t have good library of games for it also.

Last but not the least why DON’T we have a link to India PS3/PS2/PSP site from playstion.com / asia.playstation.com.

Come on wake up and be a good CE company and be good to your customers.

Note: I am a really frustrated Sony Customer in India with a Sony Camera, PSP, PS3. So when it came the time to buy a HDTV for my PS3 I went with Samsung. Hint Hint …..

Note: Only reason I went with PS3 instead of XBox360 inspite of all your stupidities was your support for Linux and Cell, but that doesn’t mean you can take me for a_ride/granted for ever.
Note: I am posting it in some not directly related categories also, so that hopefully I get the message across to Sony. Sorry for that.

March 11, 2007

Finally Got my PS3, runs in india and runs linux but no mp2 and no timed poweroff. Also allow Indians to register on PSN

Filed under: gaming,General,India,life,OpenSource,PS3,Sony,technology — hanishkvc @ 5:45 pm

As I had thought sometime back i.e I might buy a PS3 when it comes out in India for both its gaming features as well as its Media center kind of capabilities (especially for my family, i.e easy to use) and more importantly for me its Computing capabilities.

Lucky me that I had to go to US for a short trip last month and in the process while coming back picked up a PS3 premium edition from atlanta (Just for Sony to know, I found 3 to 4 PS3s’ available at EBgames shop with the shop guy telling that its been there for some time and it is not moving, so can I look at getting around $3K or so wasn’t it what sony us president had told he would give people who find PS3 in stock for a long time). Thus I am saved from having to pay additional premium in India when it releases (when ever it is, no info from Sony about it still, this is bad) and also even thou sony doesn’t mention it IT DOES HAVE A UNIVERSAL POWER SUPPLY (ATLEAST the JAN2007 model which I brought), I took a chance (calculated) and it did run without requiring any stepdown transformers.

I will be able to experiment with its PSP interfacing capabilities, rather once I find time to upgrade my PSP to 3.x firmware obviously the non native way (i.e not direct upgrade because I love homebrew).

I tried installing Linux (the YDL version) and it does work. I have a problem with the mouse (rather a ps2 mouse through a USB to PS2 converter device) which I have to fix later. Otherwise it does run fine. Sometime later I would rather come out with a fully ramdisk (initrd) based small linux distro for it with some key utilities which I use. With it using kboot as its otheros bootloader, it shouldn’t be that difficult. Also as I already have native compiler of PowerPC running on PS3 I don’t have to mess with cross compilers also (not that I don’t like it or any such thing, just lazy these days).

If anyone is interested the kboot customisation for PS3 or rather the ps3 linux devkit full cd is available for kernel.org (as well from dl.qj.net, but qj.net had download issues, as it is not simple wget for qj.net links, and power was failing every time I was trying to download here, so making it hard for me to continue a partial download).

I tried Resistance and RR7, I liked both overall. However I did find that PS3 doesn’t support mp2 (not layer3 (i.e mp3) but layer2) decoding while a $50 (Rs2000) dvd player supports it. Also one more thing I wanted was a timed poweroff feature so that I could let it play some songs or so and after a given time it poweroff itself, I didn’t find this feature in PS3. It would be usefull if sony could add these features to PS3.

Also if sony could release direct dev tools for PS3 i.e not for Linux environment but for their native PS3 os, like MS then it would be even more fun. Either way I do appriciate Sony PS3 allowing linux to be installed i.e one of the reasons I bought PS3.

SONY ALSO Please do allow us indians to register on your playstation network with our indian address if you can. I legally brought a product from US on my own (also brought 2 game cds along with it, I think better than what most US and Japan customers have done on a average till now), but I will be using it in India, cann’t I register it with my Indian address (which you don’t allow for now in ur website).

October 20, 2006

My NEXT PC might be a PS3

Filed under: General,life,OpenSource,PS3,technology — hanishkvc @ 4:06 pm

From sometime now I have been thinking of upgrading my computer (interms of CPU and GPU) and or buying a laptop. However because of various reasons I haven’t been able to do both.

Pricy PCs  (well in a way):

Well wrt CPUs now that Core 2 Duo is out the technology advance issue is resolved now however prices being bit high here in India, I am waiting out for the prices to drop. Now coming to GPUs with the availability of Unified Shader logic (rather more generically the flexible pipeline and flexible programmable nature) in the newly released and to be released GPUs, the technology advance I have been waiting for will be finally resolved, but then again the pricey nature of GPUs (rather more severe in case of GPUs when compared to CPUs in India) makes it hard to buy them.

Consoles to the rescue:

So assembling the PC hit by pricey nature of new CPUs and GPUs, the other alternative I can look at is buying consoles (I mean Game consoles).

The price issue becomes less of a issue as the vendors normally try to sell the console at a less cost or atleast less margin of profit from a h/w perspective and then try to make money on the games that are sold.

Coming to technology, Well at a technical level a game console is also a computing device with similar capabilities to a PC. However over the last few generations of the Game console the vendors have been aiming them as pure gaming devices and not letting the users utilize the full power hidden in these products. But things are changing.

XBox360 is a good console with 3 core PowerPC asic (with each core supporting 2 threads) and a unified shader based gpu from ati. It has support for storage (HDD), networking (ethernet and wlan) and external expansion(USB, Bluetooth) . And it has sufficient Memory (512MB). However the problem here is that Microsoft (i.e the developer/vendor) doesn’t want XBox to be used for anything other than Gaming in principle. There is some hope to circumvent it legally to some extent by using the XNA Express developer framework however this can only be at the application level and here to only interms of managed code.

PS3 from Sony on the other hand has the Cell processor (a PowerPC core + 8 Specialised Processing elements (mini cpus))(having architected embedded products which use multicore ASICs involving a General purpose CPU and or DSP and Specialised Processing elements from other Chip vendors, I am pretty happy and looking forward to all the possibilities in these specialized ASICs with seemingly limited resources)  and a GPU from NVidia (hoping against hope that it will have a surprise interms of unified/flexible shaders, even otherwise to some extent it is still ok) . It also has storage (HDD, Flash cards), networking (WLan (and ethernet???)), expansion (USB, Bluetooth, Flash card interfaces (SD/…)) and Memory (512MB). And TO TOP IT UP Sony is WILLING to let Users UTILIZE the Computing Power of their Console for what ever the User fancies. And inturn they will DO IT IN STYLE by USING /EXTENDING OPEN TECHNOLOGIES like Linux, OpenGL, OpenXYZ, GCC, open source applications (belonging to many/any domain).

So PS3 presents itself to be a good Gaming Console as well as a good General/Special (thanks to Cell) Computing device. Even thou it might be pricy in India at the begining (only sometime around 2007 mid, if I may fancy) still I would consider it a better pricy thing to buy rather than a pricy pc(which inturns I have to keep upgrading atleast every ~1.5 years if I want to play the latest and greatest game in its full glory).

One more reason for tilting towards a Game Console (PS3 in this case) being that Games will be specifically optimized to utilize the the full power of the console to give the best results. Also games will be available for the console for atleast 4-5 year period without requiring to upgrade(rather change) the console, which is not the case in PCs (i.e if you want to fully see what the game developer wants you to see).

Consoles which I may use for similar purpose but not happy fully:

Nintendo Wii: Again uses a simple PowerPC core  and a simple GPU. Other than only haveing simple CPU and GPU, it has a proprietry DVD format if I am not wrong. Again native availability of a flexible computing enviornment with option to add ones own modules/applications is questionable at this stage. One could always hack these to get these capabilities and there will surely be communities on the internet to help allow that, but then it is a different story altogether.

Last generation – PS2 and XBox: At this point in time the Computing power/capabilities of these products will fall below what a average user/developer might expect. Again among these PS2 would be the one I would pick if I have to because (a) it has official support to experiment with linux and (b) it is the non standard platform design (which is what I like and would love to experiment with) compared to Xbox (a PC at a basic level).

October 4, 2006

Hello world!

Filed under: General,Uncategorized — hanishkvc @ 7:30 am

Am Hanish Menon C, from India. HanishKVC is my computing id. I started on the net around 1997, when I first got access to internet (thro the company I joined after studies) and setup my website hanishkvc.tripod.com.

I am a systems architect and an open source person. My current work (well past 6 years now) involves conceptulizing and designing new products and support systems which belong to the consumer and or digital media market. Also have worked on diverse computing domains as part of my work as well as open source activities.

Started on the blogging space late around beginning of 2006. It started as a blog addition to my website itself, only few entries till date that too only in the initial month or so. Now also decided to experiment with one of the community blog sites. And here I am.

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