Sigur Ros Tracks

Sigur Roswebsite’s download section has some great songs in it. If you’ve never listened to this awesome band before give these a try. I really like #4 “the nothing song” and #8 “the pop song”. My kids call this “meditation” music 😉

Tech – No Life Balance

I’m uncomfortable with Marc Andreesen’s recent Career Planning disclaimer


* These posts are aimed at high-potential people who want to excel throughout their careers and make a significant impact on their fields and the world. These posts are not appropriate for people for whom work/life balance is a high priority or for whom lifestyle is particularly important — if that’s you, there are plenty of existing career planning resources for you already!

I have to agree with him that career advancement in technology comes at the expense of “life balance”. I remember one of the first actions that PMCS’s first HR director took — She rounded up the founding team, and then told us that the fact that none of us used any of our holiday time for 4 years straight was a recruiting nightmare. I was, personally, reprimanded for not taking any time away from work when my first child was born. (yes I’m that dumb).

That said — I’m very uncomfortable with the “glorification” of “no balance” without discussing the ramifications of this choice. If one is going to choose this route, they need to treat themselves like a pro athlete. I wrote a very personal note on the topic in my marketing rants — I Forget What 8 Was For? – What the !@#$ Does Marketing Do?

DSL Prime quotes – Does ATM-like control live on at DT? More FTTH converts. WiMax dreams

Dave Burstein’s DSL Prime always has good bits. I particularly like this weeks banter on Deutche Telekom (control) vs Iliad’s Free (simple) discussion. It reminds me of Wired’s 1996 article describing ATM vs IETF in “Netheads vs Bellheads”.

Here are some other interesting quotes from the full post.

Coming in DSL Prime is the news KPN in Holland is junking their “fiber/DSL” for true GPON fiber all the way home capable of delivering hundreds of megabits. British Telecom has essentially made the same decision, but is trying to get concessions from Ofcom’s Ed Richards first.

WiMAX Future: One Day, Equipment Cost Similar to DSL
Waiting for the chipsets

Wimax modems are typically three times the $25-$40 cost of basic DSL gear, keeping growth slow. Mania Brooks pf ZyXEL, who won the contract to supply Sprint in the U.S., expects dramatic change when Intel and others ship their chipsets promised for late 2008. “Except for the chipset, WiMAX equipment is little different from DSL. The costs go up because most customers want WiFi, 2 channel VOIP, and other features, but the basic ships are the main reason prices are still high.” She predicts that prices for basic models will rapidly fall below $100 as the new chips arrive, although $50 pricing is still far away.

Jens Lekman & Jonathan Richman

I’m really enjoying Jens Lekman’s new album.

The longer I listen to it the more Jens reminds me of Jonathan Richman. Brings back great memories of seeing JR play at the East Van Cultural Center. After the show JR came out and chatted with the audience in the adjacent bar. I remember him commenting on my sweater. Great Memories 😎 and great album. I’m going to go see Jens when comes to town.

System-on-a-Chip (SoC) vs Network Processor (NPU) – What’s the Difference?

This week Broadcom announced their latest SoC a “3G phone on a chip”. It reminded me that I’ve been very hard on Network Processor’s (NPU‘s) for a long time, and that I’ve been rather silent about my support of SoC’s like BRCM’s. What gives?

Many point out to me that SoC’s and NPU’s are technically the same. NPU’s and SoC’s are both highly integrated “programmable” semiconductor devices. The subtle difference is that an SoC vendor is deploying programmable elements to solve specific problems in a narrower application space. The vendor of an SoC is providing a finished ( or close-to-finished ) solution. The SoC vendor could have easily “hard-coded” the device, but the best way to provide the solution was to deploy programmable elements.

In summary, the subtle difference is that an “SoC Solution/Ecosystem” is provided by a “system focussed vendor leveraging technology” and the “NPU device” is provided by a “technology focussed vendor”. The SoC vendor knows the system problems that they want to solve and thus can prove that the solution delivers. The NPU vendor does not fully know the system problems that their device will be required to solve and thus have to work very closely with their customers to prove that it works.