Sunday, August 26, 2007

Atlantic Canada

We had a wonderful vacation time in Nova Scotia in July - great people, pure nature and delicious seafood.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

More Hot Technology Trends

I would like to rework (extend) my list of hot technology trends a little bit after having some interesting conversation. I definitely need to address:
  • Concurrency in a multi-core computing environment. This is basically an area where relief is needed. Existing solutions, either implicit or explicit, are not sufficient from my point of view. Not sufficient because of the complexity and the resulting learning curve for developers. In today’s world of mainstream development, many underlying details pertaining to the processor architecture are hidden by abstraction layers and programming models. Handling lock-free programming is not a piece of cake. I would expect that chip maker and RAD/Compiler manufacturer come up with a smart approach to handle this. And I’m not talking about functional languages …No question that this is needed. A constant increase in computing power based on higher “GHz’s” is limited by physical barriers. More cache is no way out. Server applications will handle this by load balancing. But desktop applications are different. Graphical centered applications (picture, video) and other complex computing stuff will need a robust concurrency concept/framework on all these dual-core, quad-core boards soon.
  • Sure, virtualization. Virtualization is basically everywhere, on the boards, within operating systems and as add-on products. The solutions are different in their concepts and the market is fragmented and sometimes confusing. But virtualization is a cool technology with a lot of promising use cases.
  • RFID-Tags are sneaking into many areas - industry, retail, and simply into out privacy (à ID’s, passports). A critical success factor will be the security aspect of such solutions. People care about the privacy of their information which includes positioning and profiling.
  • Widgets, Offline-Web-Apps, Local Web-Server (all this related to the Web-OS) – I will write about this in more detail soon.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Hi-Tech Search for Jim Gray

Hi-tech pioneer and veteran Jim Gray (some keywords: databases and transactions, linked to many icons from Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and others) is lost at sea. He left San Francisco Bay Area heading out for Farallon Island on Sunday, January 28, 2007. He and his boat, the fiberglass cruiser “Tenacious” vanished in the open ocean. A high-tech search started when it turned out that traditional search and rescue by the coast guard had been unsuccessfully. High-tech giants (mentioned above) worked together and created a quick, impressive combination of different technologies in order to find Jim. Unfortunately, this great thinker and engineer was nowhere to be found. Not even the tiniest remnant or debris of his boat could be detected. It sounds like a mystery and is a real tragedy for his family and friends. An excellent but also sad story was published in the wired magazine; August 2007 issue. We all hope that Jim will return. The efforts to find him, driven by Werner Vogels and other high-tech executives, is an impressive example how a great person can link very different people, interests, positions and companies in order to find a solution. Unfortunately, his accident was the trigger to make this happen.