Intel’s milestones in 2013


It has been one hell of a ride in 2013 with Intel, and they’re gaining even more altitude as they sky rocket out of this year. Just as they pack hundreds and thousands of transistors in their microprocessors, Intel has managed to pack quite a number of exciting innovations over the last twelve months.


 Let’s take a tour of 2013 with Intel and explore some of their greatest milestones for the year.



One of the long awaited announcements of the year was the release of Intel’s 4th Generation Core Processors, codenamed Haswell. It comes with a laundry list of improvements over the previous generation. But that doesn’t mean that last year’s third generation Intel Core CPUs, codenamed Ivy Bridge is obsolete. Instead, Ivy Bridge will become the processor you’ll see in PCs for the budget friendly customer.

According to Intel labs, The PC’s are found to be nearly twice as fast as they were 4 years ago. If you think that’s fast, you should see the difference when it comes to multimedia. Converting videos now happen at breakneck speeds of 23x. If there’s anything we’ve learned from the past, it’s that the current Core i5 and Core i7 mainstream Haswell processors will be joined by low-end Core i3 processors at the budget price points, as well as higher end Extreme Edition processors much, much later down the curve. We’ll be waiting at the end for a speed check.

There are plenty of other differences between Haswell and Ivy Bridge CPUs, including the integrated voltage regulator which was formerly part of the chipset, a new focus on lower temperatures and power savings for use on thinner desktops and all-in-ones.

Haswell also enabled a range of 2 in 1 convertible devices that can act as both a tablet and a PC. These convertible devices provide smoother and more intuitive processes for people with touch screens, voice assistance, NFC, high resolution displays and some even use facial recognition.

The launch of Intel’s Silvermont microarchitecture in May was quite promising. The innovative 22nm Tri-Gate-System-on-a-Chip process guarantees an eye catching gain in performance and energy efficiency. Silvermont is expected to deliver 3x more peak performance or the same performance at 5x lower power over the current generation Intel Atom processor core.

While Intel dominates most of the Desktop and laptop CPU scene however, their presence is next to absent when it comes to Smartphones and Tablets. Sure they do have a few models equipped with Intel on the inside, but how many can you name? Most of today’s smartphones and tablets come equipped with CPUs from ARM, Qualcomm, Texas Instruments, Samsung Exynos, Nvidia Tegra and many other companies. It does raise the question, why isn’t Intel dominating this sector? The answer is plain and simple. Intel’s CPUs are so darn powerful that they consume too much power off the batteries.

That’s all changing now. The release of the Intel Atom Processor Z3000 series is a massive move by the tech giant. The smartphone and tablet chip known as Bay Trail has been designed to crank up the battery life on high usage devices and permits thinner, lighter and more powerful devices on a spectrum of different price points. Asus and Dell have been among the first to bring out such devices that focus on impressive battery life and standby power made possible by Bay Trail.

The Asus Transformer Box T100 boasts a 10.1 inch display and an 11 hour battery life. Quite impressive if you ask me. Other new products are expected to be pushed out into the market by AAVA, Acer, Lenovo and Toshiba.


Big Data

The human race produces roughly 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every day. Or 2.5 times ten to the power eighteen if you’re as lost as I am. That’s just way too much to crunch using conventional desktop applications.

Mining this sea of data for nuggets usable information is one of the biggest challenges facing modern society. But a new generation of analytic tools are helping us control the phenomenon that’s becoming commonly known as Big Data. Big Data is technical jargon for the manipulation of enormous data sets.

Intel launched the Big Data center in Singapore this year with Dell and Revolution Analytics. This center provides a platform for companies to test drive big data initiatives and proof-of-concepts for launch. Comprehensive training programs, proof-of-concept capabilities and solution development support for big data and predictive analytics are specifically tailored for the Asia pacific region.

The Apache Hadoop software marks Intel’s first venture into Big Data software. Intel hopes to help governments prepare for smart cities and assist telecommunications companies to improve their network and revenue streams with conceptual technology. China’s Zheijiang province is the first to adopt to this and has deployed an Intelligent Transportation System for traffic management, and now tracks commercial vehicles for security surveillance. More than 3000 cameras are being deployed across the city with GPS terminals and the Intel Distribution for Apache Hadoop software allows the government to store, monitor, search and analyze 2.5 petabytes of data in real time every month.

You might start thinking that it’s not too hard to collect large quantities of data. The real challenge is what to do with it. And there’s a catch. They can’t be effectively analyzed using common commercially-available programs. Thing is, The world’s per-capita information storage capacity doubled every 40 months since the 1980s. Plus now, it comes from every imaginable source. From social media and web text to climate information, digital media, online sales receipts, RFID readers, change logs, and cellular triangulation records.

Twitter generates 12 terabytes of data daily. The Large Hadron Collider produced 13 petabytes of data in the year 2010. And even Walmart handles more than 1 million customer transactions every hour. Analyzing this torrent of information, whether to quickly spot emerging trends, track the Higg-Boson particle, or accurately identity fraud at the checkout, requires a bit more computational power than MS Access. Instead, specialized analytic suites like the Apache Hadoop Big Data Platform run in parallel across hundreds or even thousands of servers. They’re known as collectively as massively parallel-processing databases. These giant machines work around the clock to manage and make sense of these unwieldy data sets.

The new Intel Xeon processor family transforms server capabilities and creates new possibilities for the data center. The 22nm microprocessors with Haswell architecture play a huge role here. These processors are designed to pull off more security for private clouds, and work on more power efficient levels bringing down the costs for enterprises.

The International Data Corporation predicts the global big data technology and services to grow at more than 31 percent annually and the amounts of data stored will double every two years from 2012 to 2020. A staggering 40ZB. Revebues are forecast at 23.8 Billion dollars by 2016.


Intel International Science and Engineering Fair

Every year, Intel hosts one of the world’s largest high school science research competitions. Intel’s main goal is to enable tomorrow’s innovators and encourage millions of students to use their imagination to come up with innovative solutions across a range of areas. Topics ranging from environmental disasters to cancer treatments are waiting to be tackled by the Young scientists and next generation of entrepreneurs.

This year, One of our very own, 19 old Dinesh Kapuge from Mihinthale Central College won first award in the engineering – electrical and mechanical category and second award from the Ashtavadhani Vidwan Ambati Subbaraya Chetty Foundation at this year’s Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, a program of Society for Science & the Public.

Dinesh was awarded USD 3,000 for the first award and an additional USD 500 savings bond for his unique project dubbed the “ridge cutting machine.” His project displays outstanding creativity, ingenuity, and has the potential to alleviate the human condition and mark a substantive advancement in the scientific field.

Kapuge, who was the runner up at the Sri Lanka Science and Engineering Fair (SLSEF), was part of the Sri Lankan contingent at the Intel ISEF which included Pasindu Wijesena from Ananda College, Colombo, and Subhash Gamage and Rakhitha Malewana from Nalanda College, Colombo.

This year, approximately 1,500 young scientists were chosen to compete in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. They were selected from 433 affiliate fairs in more than 70 countries, regions and territories. In addition to the winners mentioned above, more than 1,500 finalists received awards and prizes for their innovative research. Awards included 17 “Best of Category” winners who each received USD 5,000 prize.

The Intel Foundation also awarded a USD 1,000 grant to each winner’s school and to the affiliated fair they represent. Intel has a strong focus on education and believes in closely working with government officials and educators to enable people throughout the world. More than 100 million dollars is invested throughout the world annually to support such efforts.




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