Google Ranks C++ Performance First, Overcoming Friction at the Nano-scale, LulzSec Opens Hack Request Line, and More

  • C++ clear performance winner in Google tests, with caveats
    Slashdot linked to a Computing News piece that discusses a bit of research out of Google around the maximum potential performance of selected programming languages. Seems to me that the test was pretty arbitrary, not entirely representative of real world applications, based solely on implementing an algorithm, not a full program, across four languages–C++, Java, Scala and Go. Given that set, the results aren’t terribly surprising, nor is the conclusion that to achieve the performance of C++ that topped the list requires capabilities not available to the average developer.
  • Overcoming friction at the nano-scale
    Technology Review shares some new research from the University of Modena that explores the nano-scale mechanics that explain why shaking a surface or a bit of machinery, like a drive head or atomic force microscope, works to overcome stick-slip friction. Reading the description reminds me of how injecting a bit of randomness into a mathematical optimization helps shake such a system out of a local optima, for much the same reason as it allows exploration of many more states, drive the whole to a better outcome. This phenomenon apparently applies to the energy states that govern the interface between nano-scale structures and will have applications with enhancing the efficiencies of all kinds of devices.
  • LulzSec opens hack request line
    The inference made by the BBC that this has anything to do with hacktivism is off-base, as I understand the motivation of the LulzBoat. If anything, the call requests would seem to emphasis the arbitrary and somewhat random nature of their targeting. If there is any civic mindedness about their current campaign, it isn’t in the selection of targets but in the free sharing of details of just how insecure they are in practice.
  • Stackable, interactive blocks that sense each other offer novel gaming possibilities, Technology Review
  • Alleged Bitcoin heist raises questions, Ars Technica
  • French executive order would grant online censorship powers without judicial oversight, La Quadrature du Net via BoingBoing

One Reply to “Google Ranks C++ Performance First, Overcoming Friction at the Nano-scale, LulzSec Opens Hack Request Line, and More”

  1. I played with the MIT Media Lab blocks (pre-cursor to the interactive blocks you mentioned here) at a One Laptop Per Child meetup (one of the members brought them along), and did see some potential. The newer models look like they’re getting there.

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