Nvidia acquires hi-def mapping startup DeepMap to bolster AV technology

Chipmaker Nvidia is acquiring DeepMap, the high-definition mapping startup announced. The company said its mapping IP will help Nvidia’s autonomous vehicle technology sector, Nvidia Drive.

“The acquisition is an endorsement of DeepMap’s unique vision, technology and people,” said Ali Kani, vice president and general manager of Automotive at Nvidia, in a statement. “DeepMap is expected to extend our mapping products, help us scale worldwide map operations and expand our full self-driving expertise.”

One of the biggest challenges to achieving full autonomy in a passenger vehicle is achieving proper localization and updated mapping information that reflects current road conditions. By integrating DeepMap’s tech, Nvidia’s autonomous stack should have greater precision, giving the vehicle enhanced abilities to locate itself on the road.

Ultra-high-density hard drives made with graphene store ten times more data

Graphene can be used for ultra-high density hard disk drives (HDD), with up to a tenfold jump compared to current technologies, researchers at the Cambridge Graphene Centre have shown.

The study, published in Nature Communications, was carried out in collaboration with teams at the University of Exeter, India, Switzerland, Singapore, and the US. HDDs first appeared in the 1950s, but their use as storage devices in personal computers only took off from the mid-1980s. They have become ever smaller in size, and denser in terms of the number of stored bytes. While solid state drives are popular for mobile devices, HDDs continue to be used to store files in desktop computers, largely due to their favourable cost to produce and purchase.

Linux x86/x86_64 Will Now Always Reserve The First 1MB Of RAM

The Linux x86/x86_64 kernel code already had logic in place for reserving portions of the first 1MB of RAM to avoid the BIOS or kernel potentially clobbering that space among other reasons while now Linux 5.13 is doing away with that “wankery” and will just unconditionally always reserve the first 1MB of RAM.

The Linux kernel was already catering to Intel Sandy Bridge graphics accessing memory below the 1MB mark, the first 64K of memory are known to be corrupted by some BIOSes, and similar problems coming up in that low area of memory. But rather than dealing with all that logic and other possible niche cases besides the EGA/VGA frame-buffer and BIOS, the kernel is playing it safe and just always reserving the first 1MB of RAM so it will not get clobbered by the kernel.

The motivation now for Linux 5.13 in getting that 1MB unconditional reservation in place for Linux x86/x86_64 stems from a bug report around an AMD Ryzen system being unbootable on Linux 5.13 since the change to consolidate their early memory reservations handling. Just unconditionally doing the first 1MB makes things much simpler to handle.




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U.S. approval of Biogen Alzheimer’s drug sends shares soaring, hailed as ‘big day” for patients

U.S. regulators on Monday approved Biogen Inc’s (BIIB.O) aducanumab as the first treatment to attack a likely cause of Alzheimer’s disease despite controversy over whether the clinical evidence proves the drug works, sending its shares soaring.

Biogen said it has priced the drug, to be sold as Aduhelm, at $56,000 per year. After jumping more than 50%, Biogen shares closed up 38.3% at $395.85 – their highest closing level in over six years. U.S. traded shares of Japanese partner Eisai Co (4523.T) rose 56% to $116.03. Aducanumab works by removing sticky deposits of a protein called amyloid beta from the brains of patients in earlier stages of Alzheimer’s in order to stave off its ravages, which include memory loss and the inability to care for oneself.

“This is good news for patients with Alzheimer’s disease. We’ve not had a disease modifying therapy approved ever,” said Dr. Ronald Petersen, an Alzheimer’s disease expert at the Mayo Clinic. However, he cautioned, “This is not a cure. It’s hoped that this will slow the progression of the disease.”