Github acquires npm

The article mentions the benefit for developers and the ecosystem. I’d rather be curious to understand the drivers that led to the M&A decision on the buying side.

Tesla teardown of Tesla electronics

Japanese researches looked into a recent Tesla Model 3. Their analysis has some interesting findings over traditional car manufacturing methods. In particular when it comes to electronics, “ECUs” how they’re called in the automotive world, “Electronical Control Units” A regular Toyota or European car relies on dozens or more of these to make the car work.

However, research found that Tesla really only relies on one central component to take care of both autonomous driving and the entertainment part.

Self-driving AI sends shivers through traditional supply chains

From the article

This actually is big news, because it indicates Tesla has chosen to develop core technology in house, becoming (more) independent of supply chains. As of this writing, Tesla produces a fraction of what VW and Toyota output. To achieve the scale, automotive Industries traditionally groomed a rich ecosystem of suppliers, to form the entire value chain.

Automakers worry that […] will render obsolete the parts supply chains they have cultivated over decades, […]

From the article

However, it appears Tesla has an substantial competitive through this supplier independence. All of the above worry aside, Automakers will have to invest their capacity and headcount to catch up with this assumed advantage of 6 years.

Source: Nikkei Asian Review

Tech’s strangest jobs of the future, recruited for today

Tech’s strangest job listings: Straight from the “daily workplace automation destruction” protocol.com reports the future of job descriptions, as indicated by job postings today.

Glimpsing the future in eye-opening tech job listings.

The article found quite a few interesting job profiles that companies apparently look for today already:

Source: Tech’s strangest job listings: Future Edition – Protocol

SoundCloud raises $75 million

SoundCloud Logo

SoundCloud raises $75 million: Berlin founded Soundcloud raises another financing round. The company has a press release on the investment. TechCrunch has more:

SiriusXM invests $75 million in SoundCloud to beef up product development and enhance services.

Source: SoundCloud Gets $75M Investment From SiriusXM To Bring Its Funding To Over $500M

‘We’ve created a privacy industry’

‘We’ve created a privacy industry’ was a statement you could often hear when Europe introduced General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and the German implementation DatenSchutz GrundVerOrdnung (DSGVO). Already back in 2016 first predictions arrived, that GDPR will boost European software industry and give them a unique selling point. After the regulation became effective in Europe May 25th 2018(!), after a 2 years transition period, perceived only complaints happened. Affected data controllers and processors cited the difficulties implementing these regulations. A BitKom funded survey even indicates the regulation is hurting the European market.

'We've created a privacy industry'
Panel on Internet Security and Privacy

Now, around 1.5years later, the industry seems to have settled on the regulation and business continues as usual. Subjectively perceived, privacy is indeed still an obstacle to decision makers in the market. Even politicians keep on imploring data to be the new oil, demanding a data driven economy and to weakend the underlying ideas of european data protection acts. Meanwhile, the opportunity has moved along. Californian Start-Ups discovered this niche and turn privacy it into value:

Privacy-focused technology companies are offering a variety of services, from personal data scrubbing to business-focused software meant to help companies comply with the law.

Source: ‘We’ve created a privacy industry’: California law fuels wave of startups

Tech layoffs spread (a bit)

Are January layoffs just a few post-WeWork jitters? TechCrunch has found itself writing about layoffs at a few notable tech companies this week — and not just Softbank-backed ones. The focus is very much profits, as Alex Wilhelm summed up on Thursday, especially after the failed WeWork IPO and subsequent valuation and headcount decimation. We’ll […]

From the article

Source: Startups Weekly: Tech layoffs spread (a bit) | TechCrunch

Upcycle Windows 7

Upcycle Windows 7 : Microsoft announced support for Windows 7 would end Janury 14, 2020 with plenty of lead time. A regular procedure in the world of enterprise software. The idea behind such a process is fairly simple. The software won’t stop working, nor are users unable to use in any other way. Only the company will stop developing and supporting patches for the operating system.

Upcycling Windows 7
Upcycling Windows 7

While this is typically not a immediate issue for the private user, it has some security implications. The corporate user, that requires support, still has an opportunity to pursue a more recent version of the software, Windows 10. The entire procedure created some media echo recently, given the date is only past due by one week.

Instead of simply letting go, the Free Software Foundation started a campaign and petition to create an alternative for Windows 7 to just stop it. While this didn’t happen with software are recent as Windows 7, the approach has been precedented. MS DOS, Classic Word and even calc.exe are up on the internet nowadays. The Register mentions potential issues with content licensed from third parties, too.

The announcement and petition is here: Upcycle Windows 7 — Free Software Foundation — working together for free software

The Y2038 Problem

The Y2038 problem is similar to the Y2K problem. We’re exactly in between both about now. Both are 18 years away, in either direction. While Y2K is over and was obvious to everyone, Y2038 is not.

The issue here relates to a representation of date and time in Unix systems, and is therefore sometimes referred to as Unix Y2K. The root is the convention to store date and time information as 32bit unsigned integer in such systems. This means, possible values are limited. Time-differences in seconds, starting from 01.Jan 1970 cannot span beyond 03:14:07 UTC on 19 January 2038.

The Y2038 Problem
Calendar

The Y2038 problem will make all calculations beyond this date impossible, until migrated to another representation. At the time being, this seems far away. However, the problem casts its shadows already. Industries, in particular financial markets, often rely on long term forecasts.

Governance issued treasury bonds come with with the longest maturity. Often twenty years, sometimes thirty years. Calculations for complex, long running financing models easily try to estimate returns 20 years and beyond into the future. This is already beyond the problematic date that Y2038 brings. The code to run these calculations is typically complex and stable. Sometimes, it is as old as from 1970. Back then, this date-representation Unix engineers introduced this approach. 32bit covered a long period. John Femellia has a thread, over at Twitter, telling a story about the upcoming issues today.

AMD ThreadRipper, 64Core CPU

Announced in August 2019, AMD debuted it’s AMD Threadripper 3990X , the World’s First Prosumer 64 Core CPU, at CES2020.

AMD debuted its Threadripper 3990X at CES 2020, showcasing its incredible multi-threaded performance with 64 cores and 128 threads. It’s not a cheap processor, but it still massively undercuts even the closest competition, decimating even multi-chip systems in the demonstrated benchmarks.

In the same article, Digital Trends also calls the chip “Intels worst nightmare”.

Source: AMD’s Threadripper 3990X is the World’s First Prosumer 64 Core CPU | Digital Trends

Jim Harris holding an AMD Threadripper 3990X

Employee motivation

This is how it most often works: