AMD Ryzen Mobile 4000 CPUs launched

The Ryzen Mobile 4000 series processors announced at CES by AMD got put on sale recently by various OEM providers. They seem to offer great power and battery life on paper over their predecessors. Especially 8C/16T model seem to offer very good multithreaded performance for tasks that can benefit from them. I hope they get even more premium design wins over the next years. I am looking at you Apple :)

Both Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X uses custom Zen 2 and RDNA 2 parts

Microsoft and Sony shared technical details about their upcoming generation of consoles. They are both powered by AMD’s ZEN 2 arhitecture on the CPU side and RDNA 2 architecture on the GPU side. While Microsoft is going for more of a traditional console route by using fixed clock speed on CPU and GPU, Sony will pursue variable speed on both components that is more similar to what’s happening on the PC side of the things. Xbox seems to offer more raw horsepower on the paper but Sony seems to offer better loading times with custom NVME controller for the SSDs. One thing is for sure that we will see very powerful consoles in the upcoming years.

Creating depth info from 2D videos

Researchers have used two-dimensional Mannequin Challenge videos as a dataset to create a depth map. Looks very interesting.

Efficiency of programming languages - 2020 edition

A 2017 research paper which got accepted by International Conference on Software Language Engineering (SLE) for their work at comparing efficiency of programming languages recently got updated for 2020 with new results. It is pretty interesting to see the efficiency differences between languages such as Rust, Haskell, Python and more.

Performance tips for iOS engineers from ex-Apple engineer

An ex-Apple enginner who spent 6 years developing first party iOS apps shared some quite useful tips for anyone developing for iOS platform.

Improving privacy by using encrypted DNS

Domain Name System (DNS) has been around for the better part of the last 35 years. Its basic premise of translating memorized domain names to IP addresses didn’t really change. However, its unencrypted nature might lead to DNS hijackings or privacy violations. You can check from here if you’re using an encrypted DNS.

Fortunately, two different propositions, namely DNS over HTTPs and DNS over TLS emerged in this area to combat these shortcomings. Different public resolvers and clients started to support these standarts in the last few years. If we look at the more commonly used softwares, Android 9 and Firefox added support for this a few years ago and Google Chrome is currently experimenting. On iOS side, you can use 1.1.1.1 app by Cloudflare and probably many others.

With widespread support available now and coming soon, there is literally no reason not to try and improve your privacy.

Python 2 End-of-Life arrives

Python 2 finally reaches EOL status after 20 years of development and maintanence.

Good luck to all those poor souls who still need to migrate from Python 2 to Python 3 in upcoming months. Here are some memes to lighten your sorrow.

Tim Berners-Lee launches ‘Contract for the Web’

The inventor of the world wide web, Tim Berners-Lee launches Contract for the Web which aims to safeguard the Web by introducing 9 core principles for governments, companies and citizens. It is endorsed by giants such as Google, Facebook, Microsoft, EFF more.

Hopefully, everyone who backs this effort will do more than just endorsing it but rather act accordingly to achieve the goals set by the project.

Apple releases 16-inch Macbook Pro

Apple releases 16-inch Macbook Pro with updated specs which include updated scissors keyboard (hopefully, a working one this time around), AMD Navi 14 based GPUs and a better audio subsystem.

I’m more looking forward to a possible 14-inch Macbook Pro next March-June with nearly the same or equivalent upgrades. Maybe Intel’s 10th Gen Core series processors with Gen11 graphics, variable refresh rate screen, better FaceTime HD webcam and WiFi 6.

Intel discloses 77 security vulnerabilities

Intel discloses 77 security vulnerabilities as part of their November 2019 platform update.

This nightmare for Intel does not seem to pass. Hopefully, necessary updates will be distributed by vendors fairly quickly.