Black Hole

"Chandra X-ray Image with Scale Bar" - Image Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO
Chandra X-ray Image with Scale Bar
Image Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO
Image Caption: “This X-ray image shows the central portion of the Andromeda Galaxy. The blue dot in the center of the image is an unusual “cool” million degree X-ray source of unknown nature. Just above this cool source is a source (yellow) that is thought to be due to X-rays from matter swirling toward a supermassive black hole in the nucleus of the galaxy. This black hole contains the mass of 30 million suns. Numerous other X-ray sources are also apparent. Most of these are probably due to X-ray binary systems, in which a neutron star or black hole is in a close orbit around a normal star.”

Chandra, the X-Ray Space Observatory, has been sending back some amazing pictures. has a great one here [defunct link] of a possible black hole discovered in the Andromeda galaxy.

Europa Rain

More evidence that the Jovian moon Europa might be a haven for life…life needs heat and charged particles raining down on Europa just might be providing it. Here is another great article [defunct link] from Look for a feature in the near future about the possibility of life elsewhere in our Solar System.

Mars Polar Lander Phone Home

Only days ago NASA decided to give up on their attempts to contact the Mars Polar Lander, apparently lost during it approach last month. Now comes word that the Mars Polar Lander may have tried to contact Earth on a couple separate occasions. The feeble signal was only just detected during a new analysis. On Tuesday a new message was sent to Mars in hopes of contacting the lost probe. We should know by next week. has the scoop [defunct link].

Mars Polar Lander Mission Status.” Jet Propulsion Laboratory. 25 Jan 2000. Web. 14 August 2016


Welcome Back, Hubble!

The Eskimo Nebula (NGC 2392)
The Eskimo Nebula (NGC 2392) – Image Credit: NASA, Andrew Fruchter and the ERO Team [Sylvia Baggett (STScI), Richard Hook (ST-ECF), Zoltan Levay (STScI)]
After some much needed repairs, the Hubble Space Telescope is back at work and as always the results are breathtaking. To the right is an image of the “Eskimo” Planetary Nebula. The NASA announcement is located here.

Crusoe Winners and Losers

So Transmeta is definitely the big winner with this technology. They have demonstrated something very promising. But I got to thinking about who else out there will benefit from this technology. And who stands to lose.

THE WINNERS: IBM, bar none. With their chip production and technology transfer arrangements with Transmeta, Crusoe’s success would increases the visibility of IBM and their breakthroughs and discoveries.

OEMs. OEMs building mobile Internet devices around Crusoe can expect less time to production, lower costs, and flexibility and variety in form factors…sounds good for the bottom line.

Consumers. If Crusoe delivers as promised, Intel and AMD have a lot of work ahead of them. This can only benefit consumers as these companies compete for our money.

THE LOSERS: Intel. It is not turning out to be a good year for Intel. AMD has surprised with their Athlon chip, and now Transmeta is competing directly with Intel in providing chips for mobile devices. The advantages in the Crusoe are formidable: smaller size, less heat dissipation, longer battery life. It will be interesting to see how Intel responds.

Microsoft. Linux anyone? Sure, the Crusoe is designed to make all these future devices compatible, but in effect this decreases the importance of the operating system. With Crusoe bundling Mobile Linux with the chip, Microsoft will face stiff competition in the soon to explode mobile Internet device market.

Whatever happens, it is good that a new company has entered the fray. In the coming months, we will learn what Transmeta and Crusoe really mean to the Information Age.

Crusoe Arrives!

Transmeta’s Mobile Internet Processors under the family name Crusoe were demonstrated today (I caught the video on ZDNet [defunct link].) Wow. A mobile chip for internet appliances running at 400 mHz. A mobile chip for laptops running at 700 mHz. But get this…both chips consume less than two watts of power. Get all the details at the Transmeta site [defunct site].