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AMD Files Patent for its Own x86 Hybrid big.LITTLE Processor

AMD is innovating its own x86 hybrid processor technology formulated along the Arm big.LITTLE hybrid CPU core topology that inspired Hybrid processors by Intel. Under this, the processor has two kinds of CPU cores with very different performance/Watt bands—one kind focuses on performance and remains dormant under mild processing loads; while the other hand handles most lightweight processing loads that don't require powerful cores. This is easier said than done, as the two kinds of cores feature significantly different CPU core microarchitectures, and instruction sets.

AMD has filed a patent describing a method for processing workloads to be switched between the two CPU core types, on the fly. Unlike homogenous CPU core designs where workload from one core is seamlessly picked up by another over a victim cache like the L3, there is some logic involved in handover between the two core types. According to the patent application, in an AMD hybrid processor, the two CPU core types are interfaced over the processor's main switching fabric, and not a victim cache, much in the same way as the CPU cores and integrated GPU are separated in current-gen AMD APUs.

AMD's 2019 "Gaming Super Resolution" Patent Could be the Blueprint for FidelityFX Super Resolution?

As AMD's upcoming feature that rivals NVIDIA DLSS nears release, reportedly this June, a USPTO patent application sheds some light on its inner workings. In its November 2019 application, AMD describes the feature as "Gaming Super Resolution." The abstract points to what the feature essentially does—downscaling or upscaling images using various methods, with the goal of improving performance, without much loss in fidelity. "The present application provides devices and methods for efficiently super-resolving an image, which preserves the original information of the image while upscaling the image and improving fidelity. The devices and methods utilize linear and non-linear up-sampling in a wholly learned environment," the application reads.

The application emphasizes on using a combination of linear and non-linear upscaling methods to improve the fidelity of the lower-resolution render output to the user's display resolution, including leveraging a "wholly learned" AI deep-learning network. This would be a DNN that relies on ground-truth information to reconstruct some fidelity to the upscaled image. "The devices and methods include a gaming super resolution (GSR) network architecture which efficiently super resolves images in a convolutional and generalizable manner."

Samsung and Ericsson Sign Global Patent License Agreement

Ericsson and Samsung have reached a multi-year agreement on global patent licenses between the two companies, including patents relating to all cellular technologies. The cross-license agreement covers sales of network infrastructure and handsets from January 1, 2021. Furthermore, Ericsson and Samsung have agreed on technology cooperation projects to advance the mobile industry in open standardization and create valuable solutions for consumers and enterprises.

This settlement ends complaints filed by both companies before the United States International Trade Commission (USITC) as well as the ongoing lawsuits in several countries and confirms the value of the strong patent portfolios of both companies. The details of the agreement are confidential and will not be disclosed. Ericsson's IPR licensing revenues continue to be affected by several factors, mainly expired patent license agreements pending renewal, geopolitical impact on the handset market, technology shift from 4G to 5G, and possible currency effects going forward. In the second quarter 2021, IPR licensing revenues, including the new agreement covering sales from January 1, 2021, are expected to be SEK 2.0 b to 2.5 b.

Christina Petersson, Chief Intellectual Property Officer at Ericsson says: "We are delighted to sign a mutually beneficial agreement with Samsung. This important deal confirms the value of our patent portfolio and further illustrates Ericsson's commitment to FRAND principles."

Intel Fined 2 Billion USD In Damages For Patent Infringement

A federal jury in Texas has ruled that Intel Corporation violated two patents of VLSI Technology and must pay 2.18 billion USD in damages. The damages include 1.5 billion for one patent and 675 million for the other. The patents are related to clock frequency control and minimum memory operating voltage technique and were awarded to Freescale Semiconductor Inc in 2012 and SigmaTel in 2010. Freescale bought SigmaTel gaining control of the two patents before being passed to NXP after the company acquired Freescale in 2015, these patents were then transferred to the newly resurrected VLSI Technology in 2019 with the sole purpose of launching a legal battle against Intel. In a comment to Tom's Hardware the company said "Intel strongly disagrees with today's jury verdict. We intend to appeal and are confident that we will prevail.". This legal battle will likely drag-out for several years as Intel plans to appeal the recent ruling. Intel recorded a net income of 5.9 billion USD in Q4 2020 so this fine is by no means insignificant.

Valve Ordered to Pay 4 Million USD in Damages to Corsair over Steam Controller Patent Infringement

Valve has recently been ordered to pay 4 million USD in damages after they knowingly infringed on patents owned by Ironburg Inventions with the Steam Controller rear grip button design. Ironburg Inventions is the IP-holding arm of controller manufacturer SCUF who was acquired by Corsair in late 2019. Valve was warned by Ironburg Inventions in 2014 that their Steam Controller infringed on their patent relating to rear-side control surfaces. Valve ignored the warning and went on to produce 1.6 million units before discontinuing the device in 2019. The Jury awarded Ironburg Inventions 4 million USD in damages and found that Valve willfully infringed on Ironberg's patents which opens them up to further litigation. Corsair has published a statement on the case which can be found below.

AMD Files Patent for Chiplet Machine Learning Accelerator to be Paired With GPU, Cache Chiplets

AMD has filed a patent whereby they describe a MLA (Machine Learning Accelerator) chiplet design that can then be paired with a GPU unit (such as RDNA 3) and a cache unit (likely a GPU-excised version of AMD's Infinity Cache design debuted with RDNA 2) to create what AMD is calling an "APD" (Accelerated Processing Device). The design would thus enable AMD to create a chiplet-based machine learning accelerator whose sole function would be to accelerate machine learning - specifically, matrix multiplication. This would enable capabilities not unlike those available through NVIDIA's Tensor cores.

This could give AMD a modular way to add machine-learning capabilities to several of their designs through the inclusion of such a chiplet, and might be AMD's way of achieving hardware acceleration of a DLSS-like feature. This would avoid the shortcomings associated with implementing it in the GPU package itself - an increase in overall die area, with thus increased cost and reduced yields, while at the same time enabling AMD to deploy it in other products other than GPU packages. The patent describes the possibility of different manufacturing technologies being employed in the chiplet-based design - harkening back to the I/O modules in Ryzen CPUs, manufactured via a 12 nm process, and not the 7 nm one used for the core chiplets. The patent also describes acceleration of cache-requests from the GPU die to the cache chiplet, and on-the-fly usage of it as actual cache, or as directly-addressable memory.

Apple Patents Multi-Level Hybrid Memory Subsystem

Apple has today patented a new approach to how it uses memory in the System-on-Chip (SoC) subsystem. With the announcement of the M1 processor, Apple has switched away from the traditional Intel-supplied chips and transitioned into a fully custom SoC design called Apple Silicon. The new designs have to integrate every component like the Arm CPU and a custom GPU. Both of these processors need good memory access, and Apple has figured out a solution to the problem of having both the CPU and the GPU accessing the same pool of memory. The so-called UMA (unified memory access) represents a bottleneck because both processors share the bandwidth and the total memory capacity, which would leave one processor starving in some scenarios.

Apple has patented a design that aims to solve this problem by combining high-bandwidth cache DRAM as well as high-capacity main DRAM. "With two types of DRAM forming the memory system, one of which may be optimized for bandwidth and the other of which may be optimized for capacity, the goals of bandwidth increase and capacity increase may both be realized, in some embodiments," says the patent, " to implement energy efficiency improvements, which may provide a highly energy-efficient memory solution that is also high performance and high bandwidth." The patent got filed way back in 2016 and it means that we could start seeing this technology in the future Apple Silicon designs, following the M1 chip.

Update 21:14 UTC: We have been reached out by Mr. Kerry Creeron, an attorney with the firm of Banner & Witcoff, who provided us with additional insights about the patent. Mr. Creeron has provided us with his personal commentary about it, and you can find Mr. Creeron's quote below.

AMD Applies for CPU Design Patent Featuring Core-Integrated FPGA Elements

AMD has applied for a United States Patent that describes a CPU design with FPGA (Field-Programmable Gate Array) elements integrated into its core design. Titled "Method and Apparatus for Efficient Programmable Instructions in Computer Systems", the patent application describes a CPU with FPGA elements inscribed into its very core design, where the FPGA elements actually share CPU resources such as registers for floating-point and integer execution units. This patent undoubtedly comes in the wake of AMD's announced Xilinx acquisition plans, and brings FPGA and CPU marriages to a whole other level. FPGA,as the name implies, are hardware constructions which can reconfigure themselves according to predetermined tables (which can also be updated) to execute desired and specific functions.

Intel have themselves already shipped a CPU + FPGA combo in the same package; the company's Xeon 6138P, for example, includes an Arria 10 GX 1150 FPGA on-package, offering 1,150,000 logic elements. However, this is simply a CPU + FPGA combo on the same substrate; not a native, core-integrated FPGA design. Intel's product has severe performance and latency penalties due to the fact that complex operations performed in the FPGA have to be brought out of the CPU, processed in the FPGA, and then its results have to be returned to the CPU. AMD's design effectively ditches that particular roundabout, and should thus allow for much higher performance.

AMD Patents Chiplet Architecture for Radeon GPUs

On December 31st, AMD's Radeon group has filed a patent for a chiplet architecture of the GPU, showing its vision about the future of Radeon GPUs. Currently, all of the GPUs available on the market utilize the monolithic approach, meaning that the graphics processing units are located on a single die. However, the current approach has its limitations. As the dies get bigger for high-performance GPU configurations, they are more expensive to manufacture and can not scale that well. Especially with modern semiconductor nodes, the costs of dies are rising. For example, it would be more economically viable to have two dies that are 100 mm² in size each than to have one at 200 mm². AMD realized that as well and has thus worked on a chiplet approach to the design.

AMD reports that the use of multiple GPU configuration is inefficient due to limited software support, so that is the reason why GPUs were kept monolithic for years. However, it seems like the company has found a way to go past the limitations and implement a sufficient solution. AMD believes that by using its new high bandwidth passive crosslinks, it can achieve ideal chiplet-to-chiplet communication, where each GPU in the chiplet array would be coupled to the first GPU in the array. All the communication would go through an active interposer which would contain many layers of wires that are high bandwidth passive crosslinks. The company envisions that the first GPU in the array would communicably be coupled to the CPU, meaning that it will have to use the CPU possibly as a communication bridge for the GPU arrays. Such a thing would have big latency hit so it is questionable what it means really.

AMD Project Quantum Resurfaces in the Latest Patent Listing

AMD Project Quantum has been quite a mysterious product. While we knew that is was an ITX sized, water-cooled case that would feature an Intel CPU with AMD GPU, we never knew if it was coming or not. Featuring a unique, two-chamber design, AMD managed to develop two sections, where one is used for all the compute components, and the other one contains the radiator and fan for dissipating the heat produced by the compute chamber. Four years ago, we got the news that the project isn't dead and that it will get an update with AMD's upcoming Zen CPU and Vega GPU back then. However, since that announcement, there was no word on it.

Until today. Thanks to a Twitter user PeteB(@Pete_2097) who found a newly listed patent, the hope of Project Quantum is not yet dead it seems. On September 15th, AMD filed a patent for the Project Quantum, now protecting the unique design and possibly saving it for some time in the future. It is almost certain that the company has not abandoned the project, and it could be just waiting for the right time to launch it.
AMD Project Quantum AMD Project Quantum Patent

Intel Accused of Infringing FinFET Patents of the Microelectronics Institute of the Chinese Academy of Sciences

Today we are finding out that Intel has allegedly infringed FinFET patents of Microelectronics Institute of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. On July 28th, the patent review committee has heard an application that accuses Intel of violating a patent 201110240931.5 commonly referred to as FinFET patent. The patent dates back to 2011, and it comes from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, mainly Microelectronics Institute. The Chinese patent holders are asking for as much as 200 million yuan, which roughly translates to 28,664,380 US dollars. Given that this patent infringement is a major one for Intel, it is sure that a company will be pursued extensively in court. All of the Intel's semiconductors use FinFET technology, and if this is true, the violation is rather big. For more in detail reading, please refer to the source which goes through the history of Intel and Microelectronics Institute patent violation filing.
Intel 3rd generation FInFETs

JOLED Files Patent Infringement Lawsuit Against Samsung

JOLED, a Japanese Display, Sony and Panasonic group, has recently filed patent infringement lawsuits against Samsung. The fillings against Samsung Electronics, Samsung Display, and Samsung Electronics' U.S. subsidiary, were filed with the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas on June 22. There's a concurrent filling against Samsung's German subsidiary running through the District Court of Mannheim in Germany as well. JOLED claims Samsung has been infringing on JOLED's intelectual property on OLED technology (on which the company holds around 4,000 patents) particularly in Samsung Galaxy handsets that have been sold in the US.

We covered JOLED's entrance in to the OLED market back in December 2018. At the time, the company was entering the small-display market with 21.6" offerings. Meanwhile, the company received a 20 billion yen (around $187 million) cash injection from CSOT, a Chinese display company owned by TCL Corporation. This allowed to company to scale its OLED manufacturing for large display panels; the company announced mass production of TV-bound OLED panels on June 19th.

Patents Reveal Possible New Valve Steam Controller

Valve may be working on a new Steam Controller with swappable components like those found on the Xbox Elite Controller according to recently published patents. While this patent doesn't guarantee we will see a next generation steam controller it does highlight Valve's internal efforts in developing a new controller. The original steam controller wasn't the success many had hoped for and was discontinued in late 2019 after a myriad of issues.

The patent was filed in late 2018 but was only published last month and reveals several interesting abilities of the controller, the new version while maintaining the distinctive steam controller design would swap the joystick for a D-pad. The patent also includes information about a feature that would introduce more customization options for button and trigger mapping depending on the game or software. These ideas build on the original premise of the steam controller and presents a vast array of modding options.

The Case is Patent: Apple, Broadcom Ordered to Pay $1.1 billion to CalTech

There is a lot to say regarding patent applications and their defense, and the devious ways these can be used as a way to both stifle innovation, competition, and to leech other companies' funds with what is usually described as "patent troll" behavior. Being a seat of technological innovation, The California Institute of Technology (CalTech) registers patents as results of their attachés' work - some of these see the light of day as actual products, but more often than not, the patent rights are used as a way for the institute to receive funds from those that would license their intellectual property.

After entering a legal battle with Apple and Broadcom back in 2016, CalTech has now had its accusation of patent infringement against both companies come to a close, with the jury deciding in favor of the university. The accusation was of both companies deploying WiFi chips which were based on Caltech's patent designs - WiFi chips that were then shipped within millions of iPhones, iPads and MacBooks. As a result, both Apple and Broadcom were ordered to pay a total of $1.1 billion in compensation, with Apple taking the brunt of the decision ($837.8 million) and Broadcom coming in with a thinner slice at $270.2.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES and TSMC Announce Resolution of Global Disputes Through Patent Cross-Licensing

GLOBALFOUNDRIES (GF) and TSMC today announced they are dismissing all litigation between them as well as those that involve any of their customers. The companies have agreed to a broad life-of-patents cross-license to each other's worldwide existing semiconductor patents as well as those patents that will be filed during the next ten years as both companies continue to invest significantly in semiconductor research and development. This resolution guarantees GF and TSMC freedom to operate and ensures that their respective customers will continue to have access to each foundry's complete array of technologies and services.

"We are pleased to have quickly reached this settlement that acknowledges the strength of our respective intellectual property. Today's announcement enables both of our companies to focus on innovation and to better serve our clients around the world," said Thomas Caulfield, CEO of GF. "This agreement between GF and TSMC secures GF's ability to grow and is a win for the entire semiconductor industry which is at the core of today's global economy."

Globalfoundries Files Patent-infringement Lawsuits Against TSMC in the U.S. and Germany

GLOBALFOUNDRIES (GF), the world's leading specialty foundry based in the United States, today filed multiple lawsuits in the U.S. and Germany alleging that semiconductor manufacturing technologies used by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Ltd. (TSMC) infringe 16 GF patents. The lawsuits were filed today in the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), the U.S. Federal District Courts in the Districts of Delaware and the Western District of Texas, and the Regional Courts of Dusseldorf and Mannheim in Germany.

In filing the lawsuits, GF seeks orders that will prevent semiconductors produced with the infringing technology by Taiwan-based TSMC, the dominant semiconductor manufacturer, from being imported into the U.S. and Germany. These lawsuits require GF to name certain major customers of TSMC and downstream electronics companies, who, in most cases, are the actual importers of the products that incorporate the infringing TSMC technology. GF also seeks significant damages from TSMC based on TSMC's unlawful use of GF's proprietary technology in its tens of billions of dollars of sales.

AMD Patents new System and Method for Protecting GPU Memory Instructions Against Faults

With ever increasing number of exploits, processor manufacturers are finding new and improved ways to secure their system against such dangers. Exploits can be found on hardware and software level, but ones on hardware level are harder to patch and protect against. If you remember Spectre and Meltdown, they used CPU's branch speculation to enforce unwanted instruction stream. At software/firmware level we also got a fair number of exploits like recent "Screwed Drivers" incident, where drivers signed and approved by Microsoft are susceptible to privilege escalation.

However, AMD has patented a new way for protecting GPU memory instruction against faults by using a new system method. The proposed method uses system's "master and slave" devices and manipulates their instruction streams and check for any errors in the process. Firstly, the proposed system converts "slave" device request to dummy operations like NOP (No OPeration) is, and modifies the memory arbiter to issue N master and N slave global/shared memory instructions per cycle, sending master memory requests to memory system. Then it uses slave requests to check for errors and enter master requests in to memory FIFO aka First In First Out memory buffer. Slave request is stored in a register. Finally two values from register, where slave request was stored, and FIFO are compared to see if there are any differences.

AMD Patent Shines Raytraced Light on Post-Navi Plans

An AMD patent may have just shown the company's hand when it comes to its interpretation of raytracing implementation on graphics cards. The patent, titled "Texture Processor Based Ray Tracing Acceleration Method and System", describes a hybrid, software-hardware approach to raytracing. AMD says this approach improves upon solely hardware-based solutions:
"The hybrid approach (doing fixed function acceleration for a single node of the bounded volume hierarchy (BVH) tree and using a shader unit to schedule the processing) addresses the issues with solely hardware based and/or solely software based solutions. Flexibility is preserved since the shader unit can still control the overall calculation and can bypass the fixed function hardware where needed and still get the performance advantage of the fixed function hardware. In addition, by utilizing the texture processor infrastructure, large buffers for ray storage and BVH caching are eliminated that are typically required in a hardware raytracing solution as the existing vector general purpose register (VGPRs) and texture cache can be used in its place, which substantially saves area and complexity of the hardware solution."

AMD Patents a New Method for GPU Instruction Scheduling

With growing revenues coming from strong sales of Ryzen and Radeon products, AMD is more focused on innovation than ever. It is important for any company to re-invest its capital into R&D, to stay ahead. And that is exactly what AMD is doing by focusing on future technologies, while constantly improving existing solutions.

On June 13th, AMD published a new method for instruction scheduling of shader programs for a GPU. The method operates on fixed number of registers. It works in five stages:
  • Compute liveness-based register usage across all basic blocks
  • Computer range of numbers of waves for shader program
  • Assess the impact of available post-register allocation optimizations
  • Compute the scoring data based on number of waves of the plurality of registers
  • Compute optimal number of waves

AMD Patents Variable Rate Shading Technique for Console, VR Performance Domination

While developers have become more and more focused on actually taking advantage of the PC platform's performance - and particularly graphical technologies - advantages over consoles, the truth remains that games are being optimized for the lowest common denominator first. Consoles also share a much more user-friendly approach to gaming - there's no need for hardware updates or software configuration, mostly - it's just a sit on the couch and leave it affair, which can't really be said for gaming PCs. And the console market, due to its needs for cheap hardware that still offers performance levels that can currently fill a 4K resolution screen, are the most important playground for companies to thrive. Enter AMD, with its almost 100% stake in the console market, and Variable Rate Shading.

As we've seen with NVIDIA's Turing implementation for Variable Rate Shading, this performance-enhancing technique works in two ways: motion adaptive shading and content adaptive shading. Motion adaptive shading basically takes input from previous frames in order to calculate which pixels are moving fast across the screen, such as with a racing perspective - fast-flying detail doesn't stay focused in our vision so much that we can discern a relative loss in shading detail, whilst stationary objects, such as the focused hypercar you're driving, are rendered in all their glory. Valuable compute time can be gained by rendering a coarse approximation of the pixels that should be in that place, and upscaling them as needed according to the relative speed they are moving across the frame. Content adaptive shading, on the other hand, analyzes detail across a scene, and by reducing shading work to be done across colors and detail that hasn't had much movement in the previous frame and frames - saves frame time.

A Christmas Gift: Intel Accuses Qualcomm of Stifling Competition

An Intel Newsroom post penned by the company's Steven Rodgers takes a stab at Qualcomm over their patent litigation cases. Titled "Qualcomm's Patent Litigation Campaign isn't Really about Vindicating Intellectual Property Rights", Rodgers cites the number of times Qualcomm has been fined by various authorities around the world, "nearly a billion dollars in China, $850 million in Korea, $1.2 billion by the European Commission and $773 million in Taiwan (later reduced in a settlement) for anti-competitive practices." Citing consequences such as reduced innovation and raised prices for consumers, Intel calls out Qualcomm in that its goal isn't to "vindicate its intellectual property rights, but rather to drive competition out of the market for premium modem chips, and to defend a business model that ultimately harms consumers."

Now, the collective hardware enthusiast memory isn't one to be trifled with, so I will leave it to you to figure out exactly where the irony is in these accusations. Of course, bad history on a company's part doesn't preclude any responsibility from any other company that is currently employing anti-competitive tactics that do, ultimately, stifle innovation and increase prices for consumers. As some Portuguese humorists would say, "one thing is one thing, another thing is another thing". But I'd say, jibbing my way through this, that it takes one to know one.

Apple Files Patent for a MacBook with Virtual Keyboard and Invisible Trackpad

Did you know, that the home buttons on the iPhone 7/Plus, and iPhone 8/Plus aren't real buttons? It's a flat surface with pressure and fingerprint sensors, and when pushed hard enough, the Taptic module underneath simulates the tactile-feedback of pushing a real SMD button (which is why the button feels jammed when the iPhone is powered down). Apple's latest generation of MacBooks already have real keyboards with extremely short key travel, that's well enough received by its users to convince the company to toy with a notebook with completely virtual keyboards.

Apple filed patent applications for a new generation of MacBooks that completely lack physical keyboards, and instead have two screens on the opposing halves of the traditional notebook clam-shell. The upper half has a higher-resolution main screen, while the lower half has a slightly lower-resolution screen that's good enough to display virtual keyboards of any shape, layout or character-set; in addition to more content. This screen will have toughened glass, and a super-sensitive capacitive 3D touch layer, and Taptic modules underneath. The trackpad, too, is virtual, and can be located wherever you like. Apple will give MacOS more gesture-based control riding on the success of the iPhone X. The patent application shows that Apple has succeeded in simulating keyboards' tactile-feedback on Taptic, and it's only a matter of time before notebooks with real keyboards could be relegated to sub-premium market segments.

Samsung Facing Fine of $400 Million Over FinFET Patent Infringement

Bloomberg is reporting that Samsung was hit with a $400 million fine last Friday, (ahem) courtesy of a Texas federal jury. The source of the patent infringement relates to FinFET-specific technology that is being said was "illegally, and willfully taken" from the licensing arm of Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), the South Korean university. If you're wondering why was such a case between two South Korean institutions settled in Texas, well - KAIST IP US, the university's licensing arm is strangely (or not) based in the Dallas suburb of Frisco, Texas, - a venue considered "particularly friendly" to patent owners.

The $400 million is just the initial sum; since Samsung's mishandling of the intellectual property (usage without payment) was found to be "willful", the company could be faced with up to three times those charges. Bloomberg's report says that KAIST claimed in its initial complaint that Samsung was dismissive of the FinFet research at first, believing it would be a fad. Apparently, that all changed when rival Intel Corp. started licensing the invention and developing its own products, according to KAIST IP. Samsung, naturally, disagrees: the company that it helped the university develop the technology in the first place, and that it was "disappointed by the verdict", and "will consider options to obtain an outcome that is reasonable, including an appeal."

ENERMAX launches T.B.SILENCE ADV, the Superior Ultra Silent Fan

ENERMAX, a leading designer and manufacturer of high-performance PC hardware products, launches T.B.SILENCE ADV fan series. The 2nd generation of the highly acclaimed T.B.SILENCE fans incorporates several new features, including optimized low starting speed to 300RPM, Enerflo channel blade design, and vibration-damping rubber pads, to deliver smooth and persistently silent operation. Moreover, T.B.SILENCE ADV also retains some of proven designs from the predecessor series, such as Twister Bearing technology, detachable blade design, and modular frame with aluminum ring, which enables stable and silent running of the fan.

Intel's "Bitcoin Mining Hardware Accelerator" Patent Filling Published

A filed patent by Intel has shed some light on the company's idea to somewhere, along the fuzzy lines of the future, introduce a Bitcoin mining hardware "accelerator" to the market. The application itself, for a "Bitcoin Mining Hardware Accelerator With Optimized Message Digest and Message Scheduler Datapath" was originally submitted in September 2016, so it's not exactly a novel idea. However, the fact that it has just now been published doesn't really mean there hasn't been work behind closed doors at Intel towards development of working silicon of this technology.

In the filing, it appears it's Intel's intent to create a chip that could augment the existing Bitcoin mining process by increasing energy efficiency. As they themselves put it, "Because the software and hardware utilized in Bitcoin mining uses brute force to repeatedly and endlessly perform SHA-256 functions, the process of Bitcoin mining can be very power-intensive and utilize large amounts of hardware space. The embodiments described herein optimize Bitcoin mining operations by reducing the space utilized and power consumed by Bitcoin mining hardware."
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