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New Nano-ITX Boards Shown At Cebit 228

Posted by timothy
from the lust dept.
Subartik writes "The new nano-itx boards from Via have been shown at the CeBit show in Germany. It looks like it will be a suitable platform for all kinds of small form factor devices. See VIA embedded and Linux Devices for the specs and pictures" An anonymous reader points to PC World articles about the Nano-ITX board itself as well as the first system which will include it.
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New Nano-ITX Boards Shown At Cebit

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  • Ironic Advertising (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 20, 2004 @08:02PM (#8623599)
    I load up the PC World article [pcworld.com] on nano-tech and what ad do I see? That's right, an ad for ENIACS [www.fitg.de] on the cheap.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 20, 2004 @08:02PM (#8623601)
    hmmmm??
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 20, 2004 @08:13PM (#8623652)
    Somebody needs to write a Linux driver for that shit! That would be so badass. The Eden chip is sweet and all (low power usage, low heat emission -- so no CPU fan) but it's not nearly as computationally capable as Intel or AMD's latest and greatest. But I bet if the Linux loopback encrypted filesystem had a driver for that chip, it would fly in comparison to even the fastest PIII!
  • IPv6 (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Zathras26 (763537) <pianodwarfNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Saturday March 20, 2004 @08:17PM (#8623670)
    A few people earlier today were wondering why anyone would need IPv6, since IPv4 "obviously has enough address space". Developments like this should pretty clearly demonstrate that that's not the case. It probably won't be too terribly long before even your fridge will need an IP so you can program your refrigerator to know when it needs to order more groceries and the like. And that's just practical applications; toy and game manufacturers are going to go nuts with this.
  • by G4from128k (686170) on Saturday March 20, 2004 @08:38PM (#8623814)
    A few people earlier today were wondering why anyone would need IPv6, since IPv4 "obviously has enough address space". Developments like this should pretty clearly demonstrate that that's not the case. It probably won't be too terribly long before even your fridge will need an IP so you can program your refrigerator to know when it needs to order more groceries and the like.

    Absolutely. In fact, your fridge might demand an entire subnet. Smaller, cheaper boards drive appliance makers to a federated, modular architectures in which every new function has its own CPU. Your fridge might need range of IPs addys if it has an ice maker, RFID-reading intelli-chiller, home-message center, Kalory-Kounter terahertz sensor array, Phreshness Gas Sensor, Open-Door SMS alert sender, remote shopping list VPN website, etc.

    Its just much easier to make a bunch of modules that sit on a network than create a bloatware central system that has wires for every conceivable add-on function.
  • Tons of uses... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by l33t-gu3lph1t3 (567059) <arch_angel16&hotmail,com> on Saturday March 20, 2004 @08:42PM (#8623835) Homepage
    Here's some ideas:

    -Homebrew $200 firewalls (routers, gateways, etc) with much, much greater capabilities than those little D-Link units.
    -Personal NAS devices that, again, are mega-cheap and tiny
    -home automation devices: c'mon, who hasn't dreamed of fully automating their house?
    -motorcycle-based GPS system anyone?
    -cheapass public terminal systems: incorporate one of these into an LCD screen?
    -smaller tablets, laptops with longer battery life? Sure there's not much computational power, but if you're just doing surfing or doing office chores...
    -add a single wifi chip/small antenna and you have instant access point. I bet Starbucks would love this idea. Instant, easy, cheap wireless internet.

    Now, personally, I think these things could be great building blocks for doing distributed computing research. You could build a rather large network of these tiny things into a standard ATX tower, and have yourself a portable beowulf cluster, or hell, nice little units to experiment with distributed computing ideas. I can see it now: a couple of 8-drive HDD external bays, with each slot housing full systems!
  • Re:Heat? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by JPriest (547211) on Saturday March 20, 2004 @08:58PM (#8623923) Homepage
    And a 1GHz via C3 is also comparable to a 400 MHz celeron.
  • by l33t-gu3lph1t3 (567059) <arch_angel16&hotmail,com> on Saturday March 20, 2004 @09:19PM (#8624081) Homepage
    Design a custom 4U case, and mount these blade-style in the case, each with a tiny little 2 or 4GB flash drive. I'm willing to bet that a 4U half-depth case could support 12 of these things, with a low-power redundant PSU to power the array. Get a 72U rack, fill it with these things, and you have 216 systems on a single half-depth rack, consuming ~600 watts of power.

    Oh god, would I love to build such an array...oh baby...
  • Re:Heat? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by smallfries (601545) on Saturday March 20, 2004 @09:42PM (#8624237) Homepage
    Not really. The 1Ghz nehemiah next to me has no problems decoding divx movies that a P3-500 can't handle. I'm not sure exactly, but I think its about the same as a P3-800.
  • Re:useless to me (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NerveGas (168686) on Saturday March 20, 2004 @10:04PM (#8624344)
    I once had the DMA controller on a motherboard go bad on me. Do you think that I've stopped buying motherboards without replaceable DMA controllers?

    Just because you once blew out the onboard video doesn't mean that every motherboard will have that happen, or even any more than a very few motherboards.

    Besides, you're just as likely to blow a regular video card as you are to blow the VGA on this board - and that regular video card might just cost *more* to replace than this entire mortherboard!

    If anything, I've found most computer hardware to be much more resiliant and hard to "blow" than I would have imagined. I've hot-(un)plugged just about every type of PC interface there is without damaging the computer (sometimes on purpose, sometimes on accident). And if I went into the stories of things I've seen people do without damaging a computer, your eyes would probably pop out of your head.

    The only thing I've had damaged by hot-(un)plugging was one particular model of monitor from one particular vendor. They weren't designed well, and they'd go "pop" quite often if you plugged them in to a running computer. However, that hasn't stopped me from doing it with some uncountable number of monitors, and no others have ever given me any problem.

    Besides, don't tell me that you'd never buy an Opteron for fear that the memory controller in it would get blown, rendering the rest of the CPU useless.... :)

    steve
  • Re:Tons of uses... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by kinema (630983) on Sunday March 21, 2004 @12:34AM (#8625207)
    a portable beowulf cluster
    Take a look at PROTEUS [mini-itx.com]. It's a 12 node massively parallel Mini-ITX cluster. It was built by Glen Gardner. According to Glen it has the processing power of between four and six 2.6GHz Pentium IV boards. The nodes run FreeBSD 4.6 and use MPICH 1.2.5.2 for message passing.

Given its constituency, the only thing I expect to be "open" about [the Open Software Foundation] is its mouth. -- John Gilmore

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