Jun 182013

I made a major career decision two months ago to leave my day job and start Flux7 labs, a consulting and training firm. I made this decision because Flux7 Labs allows me to follow my passion of teaching (providing Big Data/NoSQL trainings) and solving challenges in latest technologies like Hadoop, Cassandra, Twitter Storm, etc. Please visit the LinkedIn profile to learn more.

One of the best parts is that I will have more time and incentive to write blog posts. For those of you who read my post on Linked Lists, I am finally doing a performance benchmark to generate data that proves my points. For those interested in Big Data, I am writing a qualitative and quantitate comparison of different Hadoop distributions out there. Exciting times ahead.


Continue reading “Meet Flux7 Labs (update + shameless marketing)” »

Apr 302013

Sorry for the delay in this post. I could not get to this post in time and wanted to be sure it is well-researched. The final post in this series is a comparison of the hardware support in the ARM and x86 world. As mentioned in the previous post the biggest reason for ARM to include virtualization in their architecture is to be viable in the server market against x86. So I think a comparison of x86 and ARM hardware support for virtualization is warranted.

Continue reading “ARM Virtualization – ARM vs x86 (Part 5)” »

Apr 082013

In the last few posts we discussed the hardware support needed to provide virtualization. In this post how virtualization can empower the user. We’ll discuss the use cases we already see in the server and desktop space, and mobile specific applications like big.LITTLE and lowering production costs for handsets.

Continue reading “ARM Virtualization – Applications (Part 4)” »

Jul 132012

After I downloaded  iOS6 on my iPhone last week, the first icon I clicked on was Passbook only to find that Apple had not put any example passes in there. Since Passbook was the primary reason I had downloaded iOS6, I dug into the API and learned how to create a pass myself. It was a great learning experience that I want to share with others. I also provide a shell script to automate the pass generation process and also present to you, iPass.pk, a user-friendly GUI-based service to create passes.

Continue reading “Generating passes for iOS6′s Passbook” »

Jun 222011

Timothy Morgan at The Register brings good news: we can expect steady growth in chip sales in the coming years. The bar chart shows the actual and projected yearly growth for 12 years.



The following are the projected numbers for the individual segments:

Category Growth (%)
Wireless Communication 17.6
Industrial Electronics 7.3
PCs, Tablets, Phones* 6.2
Consumer Electronics 3.1
Automotive 3.0
Wired Communication -1.7


*The grouping of PCs with tablets and phones is unfortunate given that sales of PCs are declining while the sales of the other two are increasing.

The article also brings bad news:

It’s reasonable to expect that replacement cycles for all consumer devices will be extended a little – maybe a year or so – as we introduce one or two new types of devices into our lives. We’ll have more devices and will make them last a little longer than perhaps we might have in the past.

I am not willing to buy this argument. I can see how owning more devices can reduce the chances of me buying brand new devices but I don’t think it impacts upgrades. In my opinion, consumers upgrade when the newer generation product offers “better” features. In fact, many upgrades are forced by the industry leaders. For example, PC upgrades were artificially induced through connectivity changes (e.g., USB, DVI-D) for many years. In summary, I do not expect the upgrade cycles to lengthen just because we will own more devices. After all, owning a Macmini, a laptop, an iPad, an iPhone, and an Apple TV 2 did not stop me when the iPad 2 came out Smile

What is your take? Does owning a phone and a tablet makes an upgrade less likely?

I originally wrote this article for Technoati.com. It was published on 6/21/2011. Click here to read it there.

Jun 202011

The list of Top 500 fastest computers in the world just came out and the Japanese K-computer is the fastest and the most energy-efficient computer at the same time. It is hard to build computers that are both fast and energy-efficient so I set out to understand what Fujitsu has done right. This quick post is a summary of my investigation. For the very impatient, my crude experience-based analysis says that the special purpose instructions and highly specialized functional units in the core give them their edge.

Continue reading “Why the K-computer is the fastest and energy-efficient?” »

Jun 172011

Heterogeneous computing has taken the center stage after recent announcements from Intel, AMD, and ARM.  In heterogeneous computing, the hardware provides multiple types of processing cores that the software leverages to improve performance and/or save power. There seems to be a lot of confusion about the topic because the term, heterogeneous computing, is overloaded. I will try to provide an overview of the different heterogeneous computing efforts today.

Continue reading “Heterogeneous Computing: Past, Present, and Future” »

Jun 062011

There are two types of people in this world: those who use cloud computing knowingly and those who use it unknowingly. In fact, the latter often use the clouds more. Apple’s shift to the cloud today marks an important landmark. While most people are discussing it in the light of how it will impact consumer’s lives, I can’t stop thinking about how it will change computer science and the work lives of the “geeks.” Some old skills will become irrelevant and some brand new fields will emerge. In this post, I present my take on how computer science and engineering job descriptions will be impacted by this change.

Continue reading “iOS 5 goes to the cloud. How does it impact us computer scientists?” »